The Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) issued a “Special Ruling” this week, defining activities permitted under the State’s limited brewery licenses. This ruling is meant to clarify and replace a similar Special Ruling that was issued six months ago but was suspended after outcry from limited brewery license holders and the public.
Under the new special ruling, craft breweries are still subject to the 25-per-year limit on special events that can be held on their premises, which was a major sticking point in the originally proposed special ruling. However, the definition of special event is changed to include only events that are promoted through media that provide entertainment in the form of live championship sporting event broadcasts, live amplified music, or DJ performances.
The new ruling also allows limited breweries to participate in 12 off-premises events with a permit issued by the ABC that would allow them to sell beer in open containers at civic or community events. For more information please review the ABC’s Special Ruling or the executive summary highlighting the Special Ruling’s other notable changes.
At the moment the Special Ruling is merely acting as guidelines and will not be strictly enforced by the ABC. However, in the near future the ABC will engage in formal notice and comment period rulemaking processes where these guidelines will be proposed as regulations which upon adoption will be fully enforced.
We are evaluating the possible impact of the Special Ruling and will be closely monitoring any proposed rulemaking.
Frank Marshall, Esq., League Staff Attorney, firstname.lastname@example.org, 609-695-3481 x 137.