News from the Alaska State Legislature, the Office of Senator Micciche
For Immediate Release: May 10, 2018
Micciche Opposes Cut to Serving Sizes for Breweries & Distilleries
JUNEAU – Today, Sen. Peter Micciche (R-Soldotna), Majority Leader of the Alaska Senate, withdrew his request for a House Finance Committee hearing on SB 76 following the adoption of an unfair and self-serving amendment in the House Labor & Commerce Committee on day 109 of the legislative session. The action essentially kills the bill for this year.
The amendment cut the on-site retail sale volumes for craft manufacturers by one-third, a direct cut to the income of Alaska businesses that comprise roughly four percent of the alcohol industry.
“I introduced this bill because I agree with and admire its spirit of consensus,” said Sen. Micciche. “A primary goal during the formation of this bill was to protect the rights that Alaskan business owners have today. This amendment goes against all of that. I will not allow a singular special interest group to hijack my legislation to the detriment of other Alaskan businesses because they are viewed as competition. It is antithetical to Alaskan values, small business and economic freedom.”
SB 76 seeks to overhaul the State of Alaska’s alcohol laws. The Title 4 Review project involved an unprecedented level of collaboration between groups that has been ongoing since 2012.
“Title 4 is a mess,” said Sen. Micciche. “It’s a mess for the industry, the public, and the state that attempts to enforce it. I think one of the most powerful parts of this process, and one of the reasons we’ve made it this far, is that everyone who participated was able to look beyond their own self-interest and consider the big picture, and a system that is better for everyone than the one we have today.”
Sen. Micciche first introduced a version of the legislation in 2015, SB 99. That version also met resistance from an interest group, and its critical pieces were stripped and passed in separate legislation, SB 165, which largely addressed the issues surrounding minors consuming alcohol.
SB 76 was delayed for over a year in Senate Labor & Commerce until finally released with less than two weeks left in the 90-day session. Since its eventual dislodging from the first Senate committee of referral, the bill moved swiftly and nearly all interested parties were hopeful of its passage this year.
Although the effort has been stymied yet again, Sen. Micciche intends to continue pushing forward.
“SB 76 was never meant to be the last alcohol bill in the State of Alaska,” said Sen. Micciche. “It is a critical starting point from which tougher conversations can be based on in separate, smaller, and more focused pieces of legislation in the future.”
For more information, contact Senate Majority Press Secretary Daniel McDonald at (907) 465-4066.
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