Add Winery Direct Shipping to Budget

As an adult voter in Massachusetts, I urge you to ADD A WINERY DIRECT SHIPPING AMENDMENT to the Senate’s version of the budget which mirrors the House’s budget amendment.

If passed, this will allow wine lovers like me to purchase a limited amount of wine directly from wineries licensed by our state to ship.

The House’s amendment is based on the model direct shipping bill being used successfully by the majority of U.S. states. It requires wineries to purchase a state-issued shipping license, to mark boxes as requiring signature at delivery, to pay taxes, and to limit the quantity of wine shipped to individuals. The language is a proven solution that remedies the current statute which was ruled unconstitutional by the 1st Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals four years ago.

Other states have found that similar laws provide tax revenues and do not hurt local wholesalers and retailers. The direct shipping programs of Virginia and New York created $3 million and $4.5 million in annual state tax revenues, respectively. The December 2012 report by the Maryland Comptroller noted that wholesale-to-retail business actually increased 3.6% the year following implementation of their statute.

Massachusetts is the second largest state for wine enjoyment that continues an archaic ban on wine direct shipping, and excludes 98% of US wine from direct purchase. Consumers like me, not the influential special interests, should determine which wines we can enjoy and how we purchase them.

Please let us know if you intend to support an amendment.

Thank you.

4 replies on “Add Winery Direct Shipping to Budget”

  1. Amendment of the senate budget would have allowed direct shipment of wines. I did cosponsor this amendment. The sponsor, Senator Tom Kennedy, withdrew the amendment at some point in the debate. Generally members withdraw amendments as a courtesy when it appears that they do not have support. Direct wine shipment is one of those things that isn’t sufficiently related to the state budget. We always throw ideas in as amendments, hoping to get them done in the budget — knowing that the budget is a vehicle that absolutely has to get moved — but usually unrelated matters are rejected. The budget is hard enough to settle without adding a lot of extraneous public policy measures.

  2. I am ALL for allowing wine to ship directly to Massachusetts customers. I know the local liquor store and big distributors are fearful of this, but in reality the people who join vineyard wine clubs are such a small segment of the total drinking population that it will not affect their sales at all. It’s just stupid that we cannot ship wine here – I believe Massachusetts is the only state left in the nation that you can’t. Let’s move on….

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