ALBANY, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--With the introduction of Assembly Bill 5991, New York State is poised to open the door for the state's wine consumers to enter the 21st century. The bill, sponsored by Representative Amy Paulin, would give New York wine consumers the right to receive wine shipments from out-of-state wine stores, Internet retailers, wine-of-the-month clubs and wine auction houses.
The National Association of Wine Retailers (NAWR) today announced its support for A5991. Additionally, a number of New York’s top wine retailers endorsed the legislation along with its commitment to free and fair trade. Among the prominent New York retailers supporting A5991 are:
Acker Merrall & Condit
Astor Wine & Spirits
Chambers Street Wines
Crush Wine & Spirits
Grapes the Wine Company
Morrell & Company
New York Wine Warehouse
Sherry-Lehmann Wine & Spirits
Sokolin Fine Wine Merchants
Suburban Wine & Spirits
The Wine Cellarage
The Wine Connection
Winfield Flynn Wine & Spirits
Zachys Wine & Liquor
NEW WEBSITE LAUNCHED TO SUPPORT WINE FREEDOM AND A5991
NAWR has also established WineFreedom.org, a website that provides New Yorkers with access to a variety of tools for supporting the long-needed change to the laws governing how the state’s consumers access the wines they want.
“Consumers of fine wine in New York State are slowly learning that it is currently illegal for them to receive shipments from out-of-state wine stores. They cannot fathom why these shipments would be illegal, while out of state wineries, New York state wineries, and New York state retailers are legally able to ship them wine.” said Tom Wark, executive director of the National Association of Wine Retailers. “A5991 would give New Yorkers access to nearly every wine available in the American marketplace and that is a privilege that they should have had years ago.”
In addition to delivering consumers access to wines not currently available locally, the bill would also increase tax revenue for the state through its requirement that out-of-state retailers remit sales tax to New York. Protections against minors obtaining the wine are also in the bill and mimic the same requirements for adult signatures at the time of deliver that are required of wineries that ship wine into the state.
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“Wine retailers across New York understand that if they want to see the development of a free market in wine across the country, that free market needs to start right here at home,” said Daniel Posner, president of NAWR and owner of Grapes the Wine Company located in White Plains. “The kind of protectionism currently written into the law that bars New Yorkers from accessing the wines they want from out-of-state wine stores isn’t good for New York, for its consumer, nor for the state’s own retailers.”
In December 2011, in a Veto Message of A5920, Governor Cuomo reiterated in his view that the New York State Alcohol Beverage Code laws “need to be amended for modern-day business practices, specifically regarding E-commerce”. A5991 provides a vehicle for achieving this goal. Senate Bill 5330 has been filed in the Senate by Senator Terrance Murphy as the companion bill to A5991.