The Alabama Brewers Guild thanks Governor Kay Ivey for signing House Bill 303 by Representative Daniels.
HB303 clarifies existing law by clearly exempting brewery, distillery, and winery tasting rooms from a statewide law preventing alcohol manufacturers from selling alcohol between 9 PM Saturday and 2 AM the following Monday. This decades-old law was designed to regulate business-to-business transactions between alcohol manufacturers and wholesalers.
However, there was concern that it could be interpreted to prevent tasting rooms from operating during these times. HB303 clearly exempts tasting room sales from this law, clarifying that these businesses can operate their retail side during the same times and in the same manner as other bars and restaurants in their area.
This clean-up bill was written and introduced after personnel with the Alabama ABC Board discovered the conflicting restriction on alcohol sales and suggested that the law should more clearly exempt tasting rooms from the restriction. The language for HB303 was developed with input from ABC and other industry members such as wholesalers.
HB303 overwhelmingly passed the State House of Representatives on March 8 by a vote of 74-8. It later unanimously passed the State Senate on March 27 by a vote of 29-0. The bill was signed by Governor Ivey on Wednesday, April 4, and enacted as Alabama Act 2018-513.