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Gopal introduces bill in support of small breweries

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Sen. Vin Gopal introduced a bill Tuesday that would allow microbreweries to hold special events both on- and off-site with prior notifications to the Alcoholic Beverage Control.

Senate Bill 3155 requires notification 10 days prior to on-site events and 21 days prior to off-site, and notification of the host municipality.

The bill also allows microbreweries to use virtual tours to fulfill tour requirements and clarifies they do not need to fulfill tour requirements when selling products intended for off-premises consumption.

Currently, customers are required to take brewery tours before consuming alcohol on premises.

“We have a growing number of breweries here in Monmouth County which employ countless hard-working local residents and attract multitudes of customers to the area,” said Gopal, D-District 11, in a prepared statement. “From the Asbury Park Brewery to the Jughandle Brewing Company, breweries have become an integral component of Monmouth County's business community, serving as an added destination for residents and visitors alike. As this industry continues to grow, it is imperative that we have legislation in place to ensure its success.”

Gopal was a vocal opponent of the ABC’s Sept. 21 special ruling that limited the number of events breweries could hold. Enforcement of that special ruling was suspended Oct. 2, pending additional study.

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Gabrielle Saulsbery

Gabrielle Saulsbery

Albany, N.Y. native Gabrielle Saulsbery is a staff writer for NJBIZ and the newest thing in New Jersey. You can contact her at gsaulsbery@njbiz.com.

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