Care Act Version 3 Has Dropped

FILED MARCH 17, 2011

Dear Client:

Just as WSD learned that Rep Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) has filed the latest version of the CARE Act (now HR 1161), statements from various trade groups started pouring in.

WSWA chief Craig Wolf said Chaffetz, along with the other co-sponsors including Bruce Braley (D-Iowa), Howard Coble (R-N.C.), John Conyers (D-Mich.), Ted Deutch (D-Fla.), Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), Dennis Ross (R-Fla.) and Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (D-Fla.), "deserve credit for supporting legislation that will reinforce the ability of states, and the officials elected by the citizens of those states, to continue to regulate alcohol within their borders as they see fit."

"It is important for our supplier, importer and retailer partners to understand that we don't consider this an 'intra-industry' squabble. This is not 'us versus them.' After all, no legitimate player in the industry feels litigation is an appropriate method for establishing or altering alcohol policy. We are supporting this legislation in an effort to ensure that policy disputes are resolved by local elected officials rather than unelected and unaccountable federal judges," he continued.

The WSWA said it, along with the NBWA, "pledge to continue to work with Congress to pass the CARE Act."

Industry suppliers, including the Brewers Association, WineAmerica, Distilled Spirits Council of the United States, Wine Institute, Beer Institute and the National Association of Beverage Importers, also issued a united statement. They asked Members of Congress "to reject the CARE Act," claiming it "is unnecessary." They went on to say: "Its provisions would harm consumers and the marketplace, limit consumer choice, and allow states to enact protectionist and anti-competitive laws. If this bill became law, it would make it much harder for brewers, vintners, distillers and importers to get their products to market."

"Since Prohibition's repeal, a balanced system of state and federal regulation has evolved to maintain a well-regulated and orderly market for the sale and distribution of alcohol beverages. Nothing has changed to warrant upsetting this careful balance, and we do not believe that Congress should spend valuable time wading into an intra-industry squabble, nor should it favor one segment of an industry at the expense of other industry members and American consumers."

Stay tuned as this story develops.

Until tomorrow, Megan

"The real hero is always a hero by mistake; he dreams of being an honest coward like everybody else."
Umberto Eco

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