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Pay Close Attention: H.R. 5034

House Bill 5034 has been making the news since its introduction in mid-April. If you are in the business of alcoholic beverages, you need to be watching this bill. It could be a game changer.

The bill is referred to as the CARE Act, which is short for Comprehensive Alcohol Regulatory Effectiveness Act of 2010. If passed, the bill will strengthen state control over alcoholic beverage regulation by making it nearly impossible to challenge state alcoholic beverage laws, even if there is a conflicting federal law.

Though it is a short bill, it has three very significant elements:

1) State laws are presumed valid

2) Any person challenging a state law has the burden of proving the invalidity of the state law by clear and convincing evidence in all phases of the legal action

3) The state law will be upheld unless the challenging party proves the law has no effect on:

  1. The promotion of temperance
  2. The establishment and maintenance of orderly alcoholic beverage markets
  3. The collection of alcoholic beverage taxes
  4. The structure of the state alcoholic beverage distribution system
  5. The restriction of access to alcoholic beverages by those under the legal drinking age

You can track the bill by entering HR 5034 under “bill number” here: http://thomas.loc.gov/

Imbiblog is published for general informational purposes only and is not intended as legal advice.

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