Change brewing in city beer laws

city-hallYou really want to pay $9 for a big bottle of pumpkin beer without tasting it?

Regulators said they don’t remember why the city has a law against breweries giving free beer to folks, and it’s time for change.

The city council public safety committee today advanced an ordinance that would allow microbreweries and wineries to give free drinks.

The change also eliminates what regulators said was an unenforced city law saying that such places could not make retail sales for less than wholesale prices.

It all goes to the city council next week for final approval.

Councilman John Sharp said the impetus for free drinks is that they allow tastes of pricey craft beers before shelling out money for them.

Councilman Scott Taylor said the change just puts the city microbreweries on equal footing with others in the state and nationwide.

“It’s just an update to the ordinance so businesses can continue to grow in Kansas City,” he said.

Jim Ready, director of city Regulated Industries, said they rejected the idea of putting any kind of limit on how much free beer can be given to customers.

Microbreweries want to make money, he said, and that matter will take care of itself.

“No one is looking to give anyone a bunch of free beers,” he said.




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