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Michigan craft beer industry gets boost with new laws

Snyder also signs landline telephone, welfare reform legislation and three other bills

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

LANSING, Mich. - Gov. Rick Snyder today signed bipartisan legislation that will help create jobs and increase tourism by helping expand the state’s booming craft beer industry.

The nine-bill package doubles the amount of beer microbrewers may produce, from 30,000 barrels per year to 60,000. It also allows brewpub owners to now have interest in five other pubs, up from the previous two, so long as the combined barrel production does not exceed 18,000 barrels per year. Additionally, small microbreweries that produce less than 1,000 barrels of beer per year are now able to distribute their product directly to retailers under certain conditions.

Michigan-made beer is award winning and world renowned,” Snyder said. “We have the fifth-largest number of microbreweries and brewpubs in the nation, and this legislation will empower our great craft beer industry to keep growing.”

According to the Michigan Brewers Guild, the state’s brewing industry contributes more than $133 million to the economy and more than $24 million in wages.

The package, House Bills 4709-4711, and Senate Bills 329, 504-507 and 650, do the following:

HB 4709, sponsored by state Rep. Kevin Cotter, doubles the amount of beer microbrewers may produce, from 30,000 barrels per year to 60,000. It is now Public Act 42 of 2014.

HB 4710, sponsored by state Rep. Peter MacGregor, increases the total number of brewpubs in which a single owner can have an interest from three total to six total, with a maximum combined capacity of 18,000 barrels of beer per year. It is now PA 43.

HB 4711, sponsored by state Rep. Andy Schor, allows a brewer to sell its beer for on-premises consumption at two locations on its licensed brewery premises. It also allows a microbrewer that produces less than 30,000 barrels of beer per year to sell its beer for on-premises consumption at any brewery licensed premises, and allow a microbrewer that produces between 30,000 and 60,000 barrels of beer per year to sell its beer for on-premises consumption at not more than three licensed brewery locations. It is PA 44.

SB 329, sponsored by state Sen. Dave Hildenbrand, allows a wine maker, distiller, and brandy manufacturer, or parent company, subsidiary, or affiliate located in Michigan to acquire, develop, lease, finance, maintain, operate, or promote property occupied or to be occupied by another vendor, except a wholesaler, under certain conditions. It is Public Act 45.

SB 504, sponsored by state Sen. Joe Hune, revises existing law so that the Liquor Control Commission may only take actions that are consistent with the liquor control code and that protect the public health, safety and welfare. It is PA 46.

SB 505, sponsored by Hune, allows suppliers, wholesalers and warehouses to provide certain advertising items to licensees for marketing their alcoholic beverage products in Michigan. It also allows retailers to purchase certain items that have value, use, or purpose beyond the actual advertising value to market alcoholic beverage products in their licensed establishments. It is PA 47.

SBs 506 and 507, sponsored by Hune, remove a requirement that brewers, wineries, liquor makers or their wholesalers have to pay a state beer, wine or liquor tax more than once every three months. It also revises details for which entities are required to deliver the tax. They are PAs 48 and 49.

SB 650, sponsored by Hune, allows microbreweries that produce less than 1,000 barrels of beer per year to distribute directly to retailers under certain conditions. It is now PA 50.

Snyder also signed the following five bills:

SB 276, sponsored by Hune, permits community service as an allowable activity that may be included in a family self-sufficiency plan for recipients of Family Independence Program cash assistance benefits. It is now PA 51.

SB 636, sponsored by state Sen. Mike Nofs, increases consumer protections and ensures that every Michigan resident will continue to have access to high-quality home phone service. It modifies the process telephone providers must go through in order to transition traditional landline phones to new technologies while ensuring consumers will continue to have access to reliable home phone service, 911 and emergency services. The bill is now PA 52.

SBs 711 and 735, sponsored by state Sen. Jim Marleau, extend the sunset date on sales and use tax exemptions for materials purchased or used in the renovation of Detroit’s Cobo Hall, because work is taking longer than expected. The tax breaks will now end on Jan. 1, 2016. The bills are PAs 53 and 54.

SB 389, sponsored by state Sen. Judy Emmons, allows veterans of the armed forces who served during the conflict in Vietnam but did not graduate high school to receive a diploma. It is now PA 55.

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