Another Round on the House!
Well, well, well, another round of significant changes to the Liquor Code in less than a few months. The Legislature passed HB 1196 last night, and we are now waiting for Governor Wolf to sign the law into effect, which is anticipated to happen very soon (http://www.pennlive.com/politics/index.ssf/2016/10/viva_la_six-pack_gov_tom_wolf.html#incart_2box_politics).
We were surprised by Act 39 and how quickly it was passed and signed. Given the speed of those changes, it was expected that there would be additional work to be done down the road to fix some of the provisions and possibly add additional amendments to the Liquor Code. HB 1196 is that attempt (in some respects, it also takes away some things that Act 39 granted). On the whole, Act 39 was viewed as pro-retail license, especially Restaurant Licensees. HB 1196 (which will get its own Act No. when officially law) is more pro-distributor, allowing them to sell beer in six-packs and singles. There are some other nuances to the law that we will discuss in more detail as well when it becomes effective. For now, if you want to take a look at the language, here is the most recent version that is awaiting the Governor’s signature: