Press Release from Senator John Carona

February 22, 2013
Contact: Steven Polunsky
(512) 463-0365

Senator John Carona's Statement on Beer Legislation

"The outlook is bright for legislation to create new opportunities for craft brewers and brewpubs in Texas. For months we have worked to get to this point -- several important pieces of legislation have been filed and placed before the public for discussion and debate. I applaud Senator Eltife, Senator Van de Putte, and the others who have brought these ideas forward.

"My support of craft beer is well known. Pro-craft beer legislation has passed out of my committee before and will again. I have insisted on bringing stakeholders to the table, created the framework for it, and was one of the first few legislators to respond to the Open the Taps survey. The bill I filed is a step along the path to passage of comprehensive legislation. We are remiss if we do not take the long and wide view on these important provisions. Provisions such as reach back pricing, the alteration of a price by a manufacturer based on the price a distributor charges a retailer. This practice borders on price-fixing and must be addressed. But comprehensive legislation also includes a "tap room" provision, which will allow brewers to serve customers beer at their brewery, as well as legislation that will allow brewpubs to use a distributor to get their product into stores and in front of more customers.

"As with any issue, there are many stakeholders with varying interests -- this is the very reason I created working groups during the interim to begin to address these important issues. We will continue to work together, and in the end I am confident that this Session we can pass legislation beneficial to craft brewers and brewpubs."