Virginia Wine Bill Articles and Info

Sorry to bore those who aren’t interested in this topic, but there are only 45 days in the legislative session, and I would like to help draw as much attention as possible to this issue. Especially since it seems that all anyone cares about in the legislature this term are Virginia Transportation issues.

An article in The Free Lance Star, Making a Case, out of Fredricksburg.

Another article in the Daily Progress out of Charlottesville, Bill Seeks to Aid Small Wineries.

Inside Nova has printed Law Makers See Support for Wine Distribution Bill.

The Roanoke Times published Small Wineries May Get a Break.

The Daily Press out of Hampton Road has Pushing Their Case for a New Solution.

In the Newsleader out of the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia Wineries’ Progress Corked by Unecessarily Stringent Federal Court Ruling.

I also urge you to continue monitoring Allan’s site at the Cellar Blog. In addition to his interview with Saxman, he has now interviewed the owners of two small Virginia vineyards on the effect of the current law on their business.

I also see that Doug on Below the Beltway is offering some thoughts.

Again, here is the link to find your legislator. Call or write now!

More on Virginia Bill

Just a round up of some recent articles and blog posts concerning the new Virginia Wine Bill that would allows both instate and out of state wineries to self-distribute up to 3000 cases of wine in Virginia a year, effectively reinstating a right held by Virginia wineries for the last 20+ years.

Popping the Cork in The Virginian Gazette out of Halifax County, published this morning.

Virginia Wineries Want Law Changed also in the Potomac News.

A Call to Action issued by the Virginia Vineyards Assocation, including talking points about the proposed bill.

The article I already posted on WTOP News from January 4.

Dezel over at Virginia Vine Spot offers his thoughts on the matter.

Allan at The Cellar Blog has several posts on the topic, including an interview with Delegate Saxman, a sponsor of the bill.

Kelly from Kelly’s Grape Times posts a short synopsis.

Wine and Spirits Daily has a small blurb.

You can find your legislator here.

I urge you to call or write your legislator ASAP. There isn’t much time in this legislative session to get this law through. I will post more links as they become available.

Good News for VA?

I think this article today may be good news for VA vineyards. If this new legislation passes, it will once again allow VA vineyards and, other vineyards from anywhere, to self-distribute up to 3000 cases of wine per year in VA. The part for out-of-state vineyards has to do with the Commerce clause and laws affecting interstate commerce that can be and are struck down due to the fact that they are often found to be unconstitutional. Disparate treatment of similarly situated businesses…..etc. I could give you a whole lecture on Con Law, but really, it’s not all that interesting!

My one concern is that one of the sponsoring lawmakers states that the purpose is to allow VA wineries a break until they become large enough to need and afford the services of a wine distributor. I would have to see the proposed legislation to look at the wording, but I wonder what size that would be? And then, what of the new wineries that have developed? Is it until all are big enough or what specifically would be the conditions triggering the end of the ability to self-distribute?

It’s a big step in the right direction for the lawmakers to realize that banning self-distribution is not a great way to help a young industry develop. I’ll continue watching this to see how it develops. Let’s hope it passes without issue. Thanks to Cellar Blog for pointing out the article.

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