Saturday, March 08, 2008

Home-brewing fee license nixed for now

*From:* Joe Foley
*Sent:* Tuesday, February 26, 2008 10:22 AM
*To:* Schuler, Todd Delegate; Boteler, Joseph Delegate; Bromwell, Eric
*Subject:* House Bill 674

Hello Gentlemen,

News of House Bill 674 has recently popped up on several maryland homebrew & beer listserves and i'm trying to get some more information on what the intent is behind this legislation. in creating a "home brewing instructors permit" is the intent to require a permit for a *all* home brewing instruction (ie, me going over to a friend's house and helping him out the first time he brews a batch of beer) or to allow people/businesses to charge for this instruction. there seem to be two schools of thought and i was wonder which is true (or closer to the truth).

thanks in advance

Joe Foley
Silver Spring, Md.


From: Boteler, Joseph Delegate <>
Date: Fri, Mar 7, 2008 at 2:45 PM
Subject: RE: House Bill 674
To: Joe Foley

Thank you for contacting me regarding *House Bill 674*, entitled *Alcoholic Beverages - Home Brewing Instructor's Permit*. I appreciate hearing from my constituents in the 8th District.

This bill came about after we were contacted that the State was interfering with home brewing classes in our district. In fact, the home brewer that contacted us was actually fighting being shut down by the state because the state claimed he could not teach these classes. In an effort to correct this problem and codify that home brewing was legal, HB 674, was drafted.

Unfortunately, I was misinformed about certain provisions of the bill and did not realize that there was a permit fee attached. I have been opposed to the many tax increases recently passed by the state and certainly would be opposed to this kind of fee.

Fortunately, I realized this and decided not to support the bill. I am very happy to relate to you that House Bill 674 was voted down by the Economic Matters Committee. If this bill is reintroduced next year I will not support it if it has a permit fee.

Thank you again for contacting my office. Please feel free to contact me again with any questions or concerns you may have.

Joe Boteler, III

[Reprinted with permission from Joe Foley.]

Unfortunately, the vote-down does not appear to prohibit the Maryland ATTB from licensing the teaching of homebrewing. It simply does not explicitly authorize it.

Alcohol regulators often deem that that which is not explicitly permitted is therefore implicitly proscribed, and vice-versa.

Original story here.

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