A few victories to report today.
COVID-19 Information and Resources updates
I am updating the Guild’s COVID-19 information and resources page daily as new information comes in. All the recent changes are reflected below.
Curbside to be increased
The ABC Administrator called me yesterday to let me know that they were going to increase the curbside pickup allowance. It will be one case of beer. The wine/liquor will also be increased, but I don’t know by how much. I’ll let everyone know as soon as it is official.
I know there’s some confusion out there about this. If you carry the product to the customer’s car (and they don’t actually enter the licensed premises or an adjacent patio area), that’s “curbside service.” If they walk onto the premise, including an adjacent patio, that’s just a normal sale.
Sales tax deferment available on a case-by-case basis
I also talked to the Director of Tax Policy at the Department of Revenue about the fact that many of our breweries do not fall into either the “small retailers” exemption or the Sector 72 exemption. They have updated their website with the following statement:
This relief is automatic for small retailers and Sector 72 businesses who file their February, March, and April 2020 state sales tax returns. Similar sales tax relief may be available on a case-by-case basis to other businesses significantly impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) and the preventative measures being taken to limit its spread in Alabama. These taxpayers may contact the Department’s Sales and Use Division at 334-242-1490 to request relief.
They should be aware of our situation at this point. So give them a call if you would like to defer your sales taxes. My understanding is that they will want you to submit a letter.
Beware of possible sting operations
I have received two reports from breweries about folks somewhat-aggressively asking to be able to come in to the taproom to have a drink. On at least one occasion, the person’s vehicle appeared to have emergency lights in the dash. Be vigilant out there!
Birmingham Strong business loans now available
According to al.com, the loans are for for-profit businesses in Birmingham that have fewer than 50 employees. Loans of $10,000 or $25,000 are available interest-free for 180 days.