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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Alcohol wholesalers on attack in Illinois

Illinois alcohol wholesalers are behind a bill that would make it illegal for wine consumers in that state to order wines from out-of-state shops. However, the bill (HB 429) would allow residents to continue ordering wine directly from wineries.

Illinois residents have been able to order wine from wineries and out-of-state retailers since 1992, providing that the state the shipper was in allowed similar shipments from Illinois retailers.

The bill disregards last year's Supreme Court ruling requiring reciprocal agreements between shipping states. According to that ruling, if out-of-state shops are not allowed to ship into Illinois, then Illinois retailers would not be permitted to ship out of state. This would be disastrous for such merchants as the Skokie-based, which does a significant amount of online business.

HB 429 will be a battle between the lobbyists of the Illinois alcohol wholesalers and the Specialty Wine Retailers Association among others, and one that will be watched with interest in other states.
M. Zane Grey, 12:16 PM