Governor Eliot Spitzer has given approval to a new law, Chapter 391 of the Laws of 2007, ordering a systematic review that is expected to lead to a major overhaul of the 1934 state law that still governs the sale and distribution of wine, beer and other alcohol beverages almost 75 years later.
The new law directs the state’s Law Revision Commission to review New York’s Alcoholic Beverage Control Law and make recommendations to the Governor and the Legislature for improving the effectiveness of the law and furthering New York State's policy goals relating to alcoholic beverage control. The purpose of the initiative, authored by Assemblyman Robin Schimminger, is to modernize and reform New York State’s liquor laws. Schimminger chairs the Assembly Committee on Economic Development, Job Creation, Commerce and Industry, which has jurisdiction over the state’s alcoholic beverage laws.
“This measure directs the Law Revision Commission to review the Alcoholic Beverage Control Law and make recommendations, including necessary proposed revisions of the law,” said Schimminger. “The state’s ability to effectively and appropriately regulate the manufacture, sale and distribution of alcoholic beverages in today’s society is hampered by the archaic structure of the Alcoholic Beverage Control Law. These antiquated laws were originally enacted in 1934 upon the ending of Prohibition – we need to modernize and rationalize them.”
The new law specifies that the Commission shall make a preliminary report to the Governor and the Legislature of its findings, conclusions and recommendations no later than March 1, 2008, and a final report that includes a proposed revision of such law, no later than September 1, 2008.
“Comprehensive reform of the state liquor laws also will eliminate incongruities and ambiguities and bring greater clarity to the law,” concluded Assemblyman Schimminger.