Responsible Alcohol Management Program (RAMP)

RAMP, Responsible Alcohol Management Program, stems from legislation enacted in 2001 by the Pennsylvania General Assembly. RAMP establishes a voluntary certification program that provides incentives to holders of liquor licenses in Pennsylvania. What are the benefits to a licensee who completes RAMP certification? A RAMP certified licensee receives the following benefits:

  • Possible reduction in fines and penalties issued by an Administrative Law Judge if the licensee is found to be guilty of serving alcohol to a minor or visibly intoxicated patron. The licensee must be in compliance to Act 141 at the time of the violation and must be free of any violations in the previous four years
  • Possible discount for liquor liability insurance
  • Knowledgeable, responsible, well-trained alcohol service staff and management.
  • Recognition as a responsible licensee in the community.

Act 26 of 2006 mandates RAMP participation and certification for any licensee found guilty of sales to minors or visibly intoxicated persons.

RAMP consists of five components:

  1. Owner/Manager Training – This component consists of training focusing on those most responsible for determining daily operations and policies – the owner/manager. In order to comply, the owner and/or manager of record must attend a free training session offered by the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (PLCB) at various centrally-located sites.
  2. Alcohol Server/ Seller Training – This component consists of training for a licensee’s alcohol service staff. This staff consists of anyone involved with the service of alcoholic beverages and or the checking of identification. This training is conducted by PLCB-approved independent trainers. To comply, at least 50% of the licensee’s alcoholic beverage serving staff must complete a PLCB-approved server/seller program. This percentage must be maintained at all times. Upon completion of the program, employees are required to complete a course examination and must receive a minimum score of 80%.
  3. New Employee Orientation – Orientation must be provided to each member of the licensee’s current alcohol service staff and to each new hire within thirty days of their hire. The PLCB will provide a checklist and appropriate learning methods to the licensee. The licensee is required to keep records of the appropriate training.
  4. Signage – Licensees are responsible for posting signs regarding responsible alcohol service. There is signage available from the PLCB; however the licensee may use other signage that is the equivalent of that provided by the PLCB. The signage must be displayed where it is readily visible to all patrons. “ Signage shall minimally include the following information: Acceptable forms of ID (Drivers license and/or Commonwealth issued ID cards for non-drivers) & Refusal of alcohol service to minors and visibly intoxicated patrons (VIPs)
  5. Certification Compliance Appointment and Visit – The final component consists of a compliance visit from the Regional RAMP Representative. After successful completion of the four above-listed components, a licensee must arrange a visit by their Regional RAMP Representative to receive official PLCB-RAMP Certification. At that time the RAMP Representative will review the licensee’s records and complete the necessary documentation.

There is currently a bill being considered by the Pennsylvania Senate Law and Justice Committee (this bill was previously passed by the House of Representatives), that would require a “manager appointed by any restaurant, eating place retail dispenser, hotel, club or distributor licensee be required to complete the manager/owner training within 180 days of approval by the board” (PLCB Board). This requirement will apply to the application for appointment of managers, when a new license is applied for or when a license is transferred.

This bill will be considered and voted upon in the near future and, if passed, will require all licensees to have their managers/owners RAMP certified to insure compliance with the first RAMP component discussed earlier.

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