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Sunday, August 14, 2022
New state laws to impact ABC operations

New state laws to impact ABC operations

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Five laws impacting the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority (ABC), its licensees and applicants for ABC licenses took effect on July 1.

The General Assembly passed the following ABC-related legislative proposals during the 2022 session, and Gov. Youngkin signed them into law.

Third-Party Delivery License/Cocktails To-Go (HB 426 and SB 254) – Both bills create a third-party delivery license that will be necessary to deliver alcoholic beverages purchased by consumers from retail licensees.

Created to address safety issues including age-verification and food requirements, the new license requires delivery personnel to pass an alcohol-delivery safety and responsibility course and certify their compliance with the regulations annually.

In addition, the bills extend from July 1, 2022, to July 1, 2024, the sunset of prior legislation that allowed certain licensees to sell mixed beverages for off-premises consumption.

Alcohol Licenses for Casinos (HB 455 and SB 519) – Both bills create a new mixed-beverage casino license for the sale of alcoholic beverages for on-premises consumption in areas designated by ABC during all hours of operation. It also authorizes the licensee to provide gifts of alcoholic beverages to patrons, and establish loyalty or reward credit programs under certain conditions.

Funding for Virginia Distilleries to Market Their Products (HB 20 and SB 196) – Both bills allocate from the General Fund an amount equal to 20 percent of the 20-percent tax levied on the sale of Virginia-distilled spirits to the Virginia Spirits Promotion Fund.

Bringing Alcohol from Out of State (SB 325) – This law increases the amount of alcoholic beverages that a person can transport into the commonwealth from one gallon to three gallons.

Removing Sunset Clause for the Sale of Grain Alcohol (SB 527) – This bill removes the sunset clause from the authorization for the sale of neutral grain spirits or alcohol up to a proof limit of 151 in ABC stores.

The Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority (ABC) has contributed more than $2.6 billion in profits to the state government’s General Fund in the last five years. Virginia ABC currently operates 395 state stores, and provides alcohol education and prevention programs for people of all ages.

Its Bureau of Law Enforcement oversees approximately 19,000 ABC-licensed establishments.

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