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New York ‘At-Rest’ Legislation Sparks Debate

April 16, 2013

New York’s state senate is considering a bill requiring all alcoholic beverages entering New York to be stored in-state at a licensed warehouse for at least 48 hours before being distributed to retailers. The bill has evoked criticism from smaller distributors, who say it will raise prices and hinder the availability of smaller labels.

The bill before the state senate—S1393-2013—would establish a reciprocal “at-rest” provision for shipments from states such as New Jersey and Connecticut that have their own “at-rest” laws for wine shipments from out-of-state distributors.

New York wholesalers often store their wine in New Jersey because it’s closer to the shipping piers receiving imports, space is less expensive and it’s near New York City. While 33 states have “at-rest” laws, out-of-state shippers can currently directly distribute wine to New York retailers. Opponents claim the bill would eliminate jobs and negatively impact consumers, but proponents say it will raise tax revenue and create jobs in New York.

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