Thursday, March 24, 2011

A Political Update and A New Beginning

Before we get started - it's official. DC Brau is the first commercial brewery operating in our nation's capital in more than 50 years! Find them on FB and on the Interwebs for great pics and updates.

On to the news of the day.  This is a bit of a good news-bad news piece on recent DMV brew-related legislation.

Maryland Poised to Increase Alcohol Tax: There's something about being below the Mason-Dixon line that makes state politicals act funky. OK, it's all politicals in all locales. Anyway, the folks at Heavy Seas have led the charge against a possible increase in alcohol taxes. It looks like this valiant effort is going to fail.

According to the Washington Times, which some people actually read, the tax is ready to pass. Don't worry Marylanders, this is probably the only tax increase you'll face this year. So, our recommendation is that you purchase your alcohol in DC, Virginia, Delaware, or West Virginia, or Pennsylvania. By our guesstimate, this really only screws residents in Baltimore. Everybody else seems to live/work close enough to a state or DC to avoid the tax.

DC Hearing on Allowing Samples Announce: We previously mentioned that inside the District commercial breweries are prohibited from offering samples on site. For half a century this was not a concern to anybody primarily because there hasn't been a commercial brewery actually brewing in the District. Well, now there is (see above) and they need to offer samples on site just like breweries in just about every other locale in the country.

The DC Council has legislation on the table to right this wrong. We'll say it's because of a need for due diligence but Councilmember Graham requested a hearing and his request was granted. The Human Services Committee Hearing will be held on March 31, 2011, at the Wilson Building - Room 412. Again, the bill is here. You can contact Benton Heimsath if you would like to testify. Don't hesitate to contact your Councilmember asking for their support of this bill.

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