Proposed Liquor Legislation on House Bill 327 During the COVID-19 Pandemic

By Frank C. Sluzis, Esq.

The Pennsylvania State House is expected to consider House Bill 327 in an effort to ease the economic effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on retail liquor licensees. House Bill 327 originally dealt with the single issue of local municipal election to permit or prohibit the sale of alcoholic beverages with a municipality. However, with the state shut down of the restaurant industry for dine-in patrons, the House has added an amendment which would allow restaurant liquor licensees to obtain spirits-to-go permits during the pandemic emergency. The spirits-to-go permits would be akin to the current wine expanded permits. The spirits-to-go permits would allow holders of restaurant liquor licenses to sell hard spirits for off-premises consumption. The holder of this permit would be permitted to sell 3,000 milliliters (4 bottles) of spirits per single transaction.

Although not directly tied in to the COVID-19 pandemic House Bill 1279 would allow a holder of a wine expanded permit (wine-to-go) to sell up to 9,000 milliliters (one case) of wine in a single transaction. Currently the Liquor Code permits the sale of 3,000 milliliters of wine for off-premises consumption in a single transaction.

Should you have any questions concerning this legislation, or should you need assistance with any liquor related matter, please contact us at Scaringi Law.

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