PA 14-181—sHB 5538

Judiciary Committee


SUMMARY: This act prohibits café permit holders, or their agents or employees, who operate juice bars on the premises from serving alcohol to a customer without a conspicuous wristband issued by the permittee showing they have verified that the customer is of legal drinking age (at least age 21). By law, a “juice bar” is a place where nonalcoholic beverages are served to minors (under age 21) on the premises of a café permit holder. The law allows a café to operate a juice bar in a room or separate area where alcohol is not sold, consumed, or dispensed.

Prior law required a café permittee, at least 48 hours before a scheduled event, to send the chief law enforcement officer of the municipality where the café is located, written notice of when the café premises would have a juice bar during that event. The act instead requires this notice to be sent (1) between five and 30 days before the scheduled event and (2) by certified mail or email, to the designated email address for the chief law enforcement officer, in a way that ensures the notice is received within the 25-day notice window. It also allows the chief local law enforcement officer to designate more than one officer to attend the scheduled event, rather than one officer under prior law.

The act also (1) applies the penalty for violating the juice bar operation requirements to a permittee's agent or employee and (2) increases the maximum fine for violations. Under prior law, violations were punishable by a fine of up to $1,000, up to one year imprisonment, or both (CGS § 30-113). Under the act, violators are subject to a maximum fine of:

1. $2,500 for a first offense,

2. $5,000 for a second offense, and

3. $10,000 for a third or subsequent offense.

The act retains the maximum one-year prison term for any violation.

EFFECTIVE DATE: July 1, 2014

OLR Tracking: MK: DC: JKL: ro