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AB-711 Beer manufacturers: free or discounted rides.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 09/12/2017 09:00 PM
AB711:v93#DOCUMENT

Assembly Bill No. 711
CHAPTER 226

An act to amend Section 25600 of the Business and Professions Code, relating to alcoholic beverages.

[ Approved by Governor  September 11, 2017. Filed with Secretary of State  September 11, 2017. ]

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 711, Low. Beer manufacturers: free or discounted rides.
Existing law, the Alcoholic Beverage Control Act, regulates the application, issuance, and suspension of alcoholic beverage licenses by the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control. The act prohibits any licensee from giving a premium, gift, or free goods in connection with the sale and distribution of any alcoholic beverage, except as provided. Existing law, until January 1, 2018, authorizes a manufacturer of distilled spirits, distilled spirits manufacturer’s agent, out-of-state distilled spirits shipper’s certificate holder, winegrower, rectifier, or distiller, or its authorized unlicensed agent, to provide free ground transportation home, as described, to consumers at an invitation-only event in connection with the sale or distribution of wine or distilled spirits. Unless otherwise specified, a violation of the act is a misdemeanor.
This bill would authorize a beer manufacturer, as defined, to provide consumers free or discounted rides, as described, for the purpose of furthering public safety. The bill would prohibit conditioning a free or discounted ride, or the provision of a voucher, code, or other method of delivery, upon the purchase of an alcoholic beverage. The bill would prohibit a beer and wine wholesaler from directly or indirectly underwriting, sharing in, or contributing to, the costs of free or discounted rides or from serving as an agent of a beer manufacturer to provide free or discounted rides to consumers.
The bill, by expanding the scope of an existing crime, would impose a state-mandated local program.
The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YES  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 25600 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

25600.
 (a) (1) No licensee shall, directly or indirectly, give any premium, gift, or free goods in connection with the sale or distribution of any alcoholic beverage, except as provided by rules that shall be adopted by the department to implement this section or as authorized by this division.
(2) (A) Notwithstanding paragraph (1), for purposes of this section, a refund to, or exchange of products for, a dissatisfied consumer by a licensee authorized to sell to consumers shall not be deemed a premium, gift, or free goods given in connection with the sale or distribution of an alcoholic beverage.
(B) A winegrower may advertise or otherwise offer consumers a guarantee of product satisfaction only in newsletters or other publications of the winegrower or at the winegrower’s premises. A winegrower may refund to a dissatisfied consumer the entire purchase price of wine produced by that winegrower and sold to that consumer, regardless of where the wine was purchased.
(b) (1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), no rule of the department may permit a licensee to give any premium, gift, or free goods of greater than inconsequential value in connection with the sale or distribution of beer. With respect to beer, premiums, gifts, or free goods, including advertising specialties that have no significant utilitarian value other than advertising, shall be deemed to have greater than inconsequential value if they cost more than twenty-five cents ($0.25) per unit, or cost more than fifteen dollars ($15) in the aggregate for all those items given by a single supplier to a single retail premises per calendar year.
(2) (A) No rule of the department may impose a dollar limit for consumer advertising specialties furnished by a beer manufacturer to the general public other than three dollars ($3) per unit original cost to the beer manufacturer who purchased it.
(B) With respect to beer, a beer manufacturer may give consumer advertising specialties to the general public that do not exceed three dollars ($3) per unit original cost to the beer manufacturer who purchased it. For purposes of this paragraph, “beer manufacturer” includes a holder of a beer manufacturer’s license, a holder of an out-of-state beer manufacturer’s certificate, an out-of-state vendor that holds a certificate of compliance, or a holder of a beer and wine importer’s general license. A licensee authorized to give consumer advertising specialties pursuant to this paragraph shall not be precluded from doing so on the basis of holding any other type of alcoholic beverage license.
(C) A beer manufacturer, as defined in subparagraph (B) of paragraph (2) shall not require a beer wholesaler to fund the purchase of consumer advertising specialties that beer manufacturers are permitted to give under paragraph (2).
(D) Consumer advertising specialties furnished by a beer manufacturer are intended only for adults of legal drinking age. Coin banks, toys, balloons, magic tricks, miniature bottles or cans, confections, dolls, or other items that appeal to minors or underage drinkers may not be used in connection with the merchandising of beer.
(c) With respect to distilled spirits and wines, a licensee may furnish, give, rent, loan, or sell advertising specialties to a retailer, provided those items bear conspicuous advertising required of a sign and the total value of all retailer advertising specialties furnished by a supplier, directly or indirectly, to a retailer do not exceed fifty dollars ($50) per brand in any one calendar year per retail premises. The value of a retailer advertising specialty is the actual cost of that item to the supplier who initially purchased it, excluding transportation and installation costs. The furnishing or giving of any retailer advertising specialty shall not be conditioned upon the purchase of the supplier’s product. Retail advertising specialties given or furnished free of charge may not be sold by the retail licensee. No rule of the department may impose a dollar limit for consumer advertising specialties furnished by a distilled spirits supplier to a retailer or to the general public of less than five dollars ($5) per unit original cost to the supplier who purchased it.
(d) Notwithstanding any other provision of this division, a beer manufacturer may provide directly to consumers free or discounted rides through taxicabs, transportation network companies, or any other ride service for the purpose of furthering public safety. The free or discounted rides may be provided by vouchers, codes, or any other method to deliver the free or discounted ride. A free or discounted ride, or the provision of a voucher, code, or other method of delivery, shall not be conditioned upon the purchase of an alcoholic beverage. A beer and wine wholesaler shall not directly or indirectly underwrite, share in, or contribute to, the costs of free or discounted rides or serve as an agent of a beer manufacturer to provide free or discounted rides to consumers. Nothing in this provision authorizes a beer manufacturer to provide a gift or anything of value directly or indirectly to a retail licensee. For purposes of this subdivision, “beer manufacturer” has the same meaning as defined in subparagraph (B) of paragraph (2) of subdivision (b).

SEC. 2.

 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.