CAVE employs a full-time lobbyist who is dedicated to monitoring important issues, informing members, facilitating discussion and acts as a liaison to the Colorado wine industry. CAVE also has a legislative committee. This committee is devoted to navigating the direction of future legislation, giving the membership and the industry a cohesive voice.
SB23-264, Alcohol Beverage Festival Participation
Rep. Julie McCluskie, Rep Mike Lynch, Sen. Bob Gardner, Sen. Robert Rodriguez
SB23-264 was CAVE’s proactive priority bill of the 2023 legislative session. Prior to the bill’s passage, wineries wanting to attend events pulling a festival permit were capped at nine (9) in a 12-month period. SB23-264 changes the window during which festivals are counted from 12-months after the issuance of a permit to a calendar year. It also authorizes a licensee to jointly participate in up to 52 festivals held by another licensee. It also requires the licensee to file a permit application 30 calendar days before the festival, changed from 10 business days as well as increases the fee for a permit from $25 annually to $50 per festival;
HB21-1044, Winery License Include Noncontiguous Areas
Rep. Edie Hooton (D, Boulder) Rep. Colin Larson (R, Littleton)
Sen. Jeff Bridges (D, Littleton) Sen. Bob Gardner (R, Colorado Springs)
Signed into Law
HB-1044 was CAVE’s proactive priority bill of the 2021 Legislative Session. Prior to the
bill’s passage, the licensed premises of a limited or manufacturing winery must be
contiguous, mean it must be a single space or an adjacent space sharing a wall. This
presents a problem if the space directly adjacent is not available. This bill allows a
winery to expand their premises to up to two noncontiguous spaces within a ten mile
radius. This allows a winery to expand their business under a single license while
retaining the investment of their existing location.
SB18-173 Removal of Vinous Liquor from Licensed Premises
Senator Bob Gardner (R, Colorado Springs) Representative Leslie Herod (D, Denver)
Signed Into Law
The original “cork and carry” law permits a licensed premise that serves full meals to allow a customer to leave with one opened, partially consumed bottle of wine. Limited wineries have historically been unable to cork a partially consumed bottle of wine for customers because they lack the minimum food requirement to do so. SB-173 expands the food requirement to include “sandwiches and light snacks”, which now allows limited wineries that fulfill that food requirement to “cork and carry”. The “sandwiches and light snacks” requirement only applies to those licensees that choose to participate in “cork and carry” If a licensee does not wish to cork bottles of wine for customers, the additional food requirement does not apply.
The passage of this bill enables limited wineries who, by law, serve only wine to provide a valuable service to their customers. This bill is a step forward in ensuring Colorado’s wineries continue to sell their exceptional products while avoiding over consumption and promoting public safety.
HB17-1145 Amateur Wine Making Contests and Judging
Representative Leslie Herod (D, Denver) Senator Bob Gardner (R, Colorado Springs)
Signed Into Law
Prior to HB-1145, amateur wine making competitions could only be held at non-liquor licensed locations. Due to this inability, Colorado has not been and could not be considered to host the WineMaker Magazine Conference. The passage of this legislation allows for amateur wine making competitions to be held on a liquor licensed premise such as a limited winery or hotel venue. The legislation only allows twenty-year old participants and judges and sample sizes are limited.
The passage of this legislation has made Colorado an attractive candidate for national wine conventions and has provided parity for Colorado’s blossoming craft wine industry as well as keeps Colorado at the forefront of agricultural innovation and economic development.
HB17-1092 Retail Establishments and Performing Rights
Representative Steve Lebsock (D, Thornton) Senator Jack Tate (R, Centennial)
Signed Into Law
Performance Rights Organizations, such as BMI and ASCAP own the licensing rights to the large majority of songs played in any given retail establishment. However, there has been a lack of transparency regarding several pieces of how business is conducted. For example, how these companies formulate their charges and what the specific criteria is for charging each individual retailer. HB-1092 now prohibits PRO’s from double charging an establishment if they use a commercially licensed music service such as business Pandora or Spotify. It also requires PRO’s to list their song libraries as well as a template of their contracts on the Secretary of State’s website. This would prohibit a PRO from charging two different establishments with the same criteria two different amounts. It also allows an establishment to see the list of songs each PRO owns the right to prior to any live performances.
This is a strong step in the right direction for more transparency with PRO’s and bolstering retailers’ knowledge on their rights regarding both live and pre-recorded music.
HB16-1271 Limited Winery Direct Delivery Personal Consumers
Representative Dan Nordberg (R, Colorado Springs) Representative Jonathan Singer (D, Boulder) Senator Cheri Jahn (D, Thornton) Senator Kevin Lundberg (R, Loveland)
Signed Into Law
Prior to HB16-1271, it was illegal for limited wineries to ship product directly to consumers. Wineries were required to use a common carrier, such as UPS and FedEx. HB-1271 allows a limited winery that holds a direct shippers permit to deliver product directly to personal consumers in addition to using a common carrier.
This legislation created an additional avenue for wineries to promote and sell their products while remaining compliant with the law. Countless wineries have taken advantage of this ability and continue to benefit.
SB16-197 Liquor Licensed Drugstores Multiple Licenses
Senator Pat Steadman (D, Denver) Rep. Dan Nordberg (R, Colorado Springs) Rep. Angela Williams (D, Denver)
Signed Into Law
SB-197 was the most significant change to Colorado’s liquor code since the repeal of prohibition in 1933. The law now allows for liquor licensed drugstores to sell full strength beer, wine and spirits provided certain criteria are met. One section of the bill speaks specifically to liquor licensed drugstore’s manager’s permit. CAVE was successful in inserting language that encourages managers to purchase and promote locally produced alcohol beverage products. This has aided in the preservation and promotion of Colorado’s unique craft market and maintained Colorado wineries’ presence in the ever growing grocery market.