News:

  Senate Bill 51-49 includes a two-year version of the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act, which cuts the federal excise tax on spirits, wine and beer, allows in-bond transfers of bottled spirits and provides for the expensing of certain costs related to the aging process of alcohol. The Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act creates a tiered excise tax rate for distilled spirits, a shift from the flat $13.50 per proof gallon rate. The rate of tax is lowered to $2.70 per proof gallon on the first 100,000 proof gallons of distilled spirits, $13.34 for all proof gallons in excess of that amount but less than 22,130,000 proof gallons, and $13.50 for amounts greater. Like many others in the alcohol industry, the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) is experiencing the effects of the Act. Sizeable federal excise tax reductions on beer, wine, and spirits will undoubtedly impact the TTB’s regulations in one way or another, but for the moment TTB officials are still trying to narrow the practical implications of the Act which went into effect January 1, 2018. TTB has not yet released guidance but their website reads “On December 22, 2017, the President signed into law the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, which makes extensive changes to the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, including provisions related to alcohol that are administered by TTB. Those changes are effective January 1, 2018. We are currently assessing the impact of these changes on TTB forms, regulations,…

Posted in ACSA, alcohol beverage law, Craft Spirits, TTB | Tagged Ashley, Congress, Craft, FET, TTB | Comments Off

After Sessions Takes Off the Gloves, the Legalized Cannabis Industry Strikes Back. Here is Hoban’s official response to today’s Jeff Sessions memo (Ryan Malkin is Of Counsel at Hoban Law Group:   While the gloves are off, it’s unclear who will be throwing the first punch: United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions or the legalized cannabis industry. In this morning’s attached internal guidance to all United States Attorneys entitled “Marijuana Enforcement,” Mr. Sessions rescinded some of his office’s prior guidelines instructing that, like its predecessors, his guidance creates no “rights, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law by any party in any matter civil or criminal.” See January 4, 2018 Sessions Memo Concerning Marijuana Enforcement, attached hereto. Although initially misreported by many news outlets, Mr. Sessions did nothing more then re-state that each United States Attorney’s office has discretion in choosing which laws to enforce. While a shock to the industry, such a move was not unexpected. It has been the pattern of Mr. Sessions to make bold public statements as a matter of course each time that the momentum of the commercial regulated cannabis industry gains the attention of the mainstream media. Monday (New Year’s Day) was one of those days. With the landmark retail legalization news (and resultant national coverage) coming out of California on Monday, and the seemingly normalized coverage of cannabis use on New Year’s Eve by CNN, (http://fortune.com/2018/01/01/cnn-new-years-everandi-kaye-marijuana/), frankly, Mr. Sessions was compelled to do something. Importantly, this does not change the legal status of marijuana; the…

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