OLR Bill Analysis

sHB 5585 (as amended by House "A")*

AN ACT ESTABLISHING AND FUNDING A STATE PARKS SUSTAINABILITY ACCOUNT.

SUMMARY:

This bill requires in-state transporter permittees for alcoholic liquor (i.e., beer, liquor, and wine) that knowingly transport alcohol into the state to file a report with specified information to the Department of Revenue Services (DRS). Each violation of this reporting requirement is punishable by a fine of up to $1,000. The bill specifies that all the functions it assigns to DRS must be performed with available appropriations.

Current law requires in-state transporter permittees, when shipping or delivering wine directly to a Connecticut consumer, to follow certain age verification requirements (e.g., obtaining a signature from someone age 21 or older, see BACKGROUND). Under the bill, these requirements only apply when the permittee knowingly ships or delivers the wine.

The bill also makes it a separate offense to (1) transport alcoholic liquor into the state without the correct permits and (2) violate the age verification requirements. Currently violators may only be fined if they are convicted of both offenses. Under the bill, a violator may be fined if convicted of either offense. It lowers the fine from $2,000 to $1,000 for each offense.

*House Amendment “A” replaces the underlying bill (File 421) which established a state parks sustainability account with money from unclaimed bottle deposits.

EFFECTIVE DATE: July 1, 2016

DRS REPORT

Under the bill, in-state transporter permittees that knowingly transport alcoholic liquor into Connecticut must submit the required report in a DRS-prescribed electronic format by the 15th day of the month following the month the transport took place. The report must include the:

1. name of the person, corporation, trust, partnership, incorporated or unincorporated association, or other legal entity filing the report;

2. time period covered by the report;

3. name and business address of each person or entity that delivered the alcohol (i.e., consignor);

4. name and address of each person or entity that received the alcohol (i.e., consignee); and

5. alcohol's shipment or delivery date.

DRS must provide a copy of the report to the Liquor Control Commission and the consumer protection commissioner when they request it in writing.

BACKGROUND

Direct Wine Delivery Requirements

 By law, in-state transporter permittees must (1) make certain that all packages of wine shipped to Connecticut consumers bear labels stating, “CONTAINS ALCOHOL—SIGNATURE OF A PERSON AGE 21 OR OLDER REQUIRED FOR DELIVERY” and (2) obtain the signature of a person age 21 or older before delivery, after requiring the signer to prove his or her age by showing a valid driver's license or Connecticut identity card.

The law prohibits permittees from delivering to any address in the state where the sale of alcoholic beverages is prohibited under the local option provision of the Liquor Control Act. It also prohibits them from delivering alcoholic beverages unless applicable sales taxes have been paid. 

COMMITTEE ACTION

Environment Committee

Joint Favorable Substitute

Yea

29

Nay

0

(03/16/2016)

Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee

Joint Favorable

Yea

46

Nay

0

(04/18/2016)