BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



          SENATE COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATION
                              Senator Isadore Hall, III
                                        Chair
                                2015 - 2016  Regular 

          Bill No:           SB 685           Hearing Date:    4/14/2015
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          |Author:    |McGuire                                              |
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          |Version:   |4/7/2015                                             |
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          |Urgency:   |No                     |Fiscal:      |No              |
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          |Consultant:|Arthur Terzakis                                      |
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          SUBJECT: Alcoholic beverage service:  veterans' club license:   
          beer and wine tasting


            DIGEST:    This bill adds a new provision to the Alcoholic  
          Beverage Control (ABC) Act that authorizes a holder of a  
          veterans' club license, as part of a beer tasting, wine tasting,  
          or beer and wine tasting event, to sell and serve beer, wine, or  
          food for consumption within the licensed establishment to  
          members of the veterans' organization and their guests, as well  
          as to members of the "general public."

          ANALYSIS:
          
          Existing law:
          
          1)Establishes the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC)  
            and grants it exclusive authority to administer the provisions  
            of the ABC Act in accordance with laws enacted by the  
            Legislature.  This involves licensing individuals and  
            businesses associated with the manufacture, importation and  
            sale of alcoholic beverages in this state and the collection  
            of license fees for this purpose.
          
          2)For purposes of the ABC Act, defines "club" to mean a  
            corporation or association which is the owner, lessee, or  
            occupant of an establishment operated solely for objects of a  
            social or athletic nature but not for pecuniary gain, having a  
            bona fide membership list, and the majority of the members of  







          SB 685 (McGuire)                                   Page 2 of ?
          
          
            which pay dues at least once in every year, and the property  
            as well as the advantages of which belong to the members, and  
            which sells alcoholic beverages only to its members and its  
            bona fide guests.  (B & P Code Section 23037)
          
          3)Provides for the issuance of a "club" license allowing the  
            sale of alcoholic beverages to a plethora of  
            clubs/organizations (e.g., golf club, swimming club, tennis  
            club, horse riding club, beach and athletic club, handball or  
            racquetball club, nonprofit mobile homeowners social club,  
            national fraternal organizations, rod and gun club, peace  
            officers and firefighters associations, nonprofit social and  
            religious club, National Guard or Air National Guard club,  
            labor council, American Citizens club, local dental society  
            club, condominium homeowners' association, Hidalgo Society,  
            nonprofit lawn bowls club, etc.).
          
          4)Also, authorizes the issuance of a "veterans" club license and  
            defines veteran to mean any person who has served in the  
            United States Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast  
            Guard, or as an active nurse in the service of the American  
            Red Cross, or in the Army and Navy Nurse Corps in time of war,  
            or in any expedition of the Armed Forces of the United States,  
            or who has served in one of these services during the period  
            September 16, 1940, to December 7, 1941, and received a  
            discharge under conditions other than dishonorable.  (B & P  
            Code Section 23450)
          
          5)Provides that the holder of a veterans' club license may  
            exercise all of the rights and privileges permitted by an  
            on-sale general license but may sell and serve alcoholic  
            beverages for consumption within the licensed establishment  
            only to bona fide members of the veterans' organization and  
            their bona fide guests.  Also, provides that a veterans' club  
            license is not transferable, as specified.  

          This bill:

          1)Expands the privileges of the holder of a veterans' club  
            license by creating a new provision in the ABC Act that  
            authorizes the licensee, as part of a beer tasting, wine  
            tasting, or beer and wine tasting event, to sell and serve  
            beer and wine, or food for consumption within the licensed  
            establishment to members of the general public, as well as to  
            the members of the veterans' organization and their guests. 








          SB 685 (McGuire)                                   Page 3 of ?
          
          

          2)Makes other conforming changes, as specified.

          Background

          Purpose of SB 685:  Over the years numerous "club" licenses have  
          been added to the ABC Act allowing the license holder to sell  
          and serve alcoholic beverages for consumption within the  
          licensed establishment and "only" to members of the club and  
          their guests.  

          According to the author's office, existing law pertaining to  
          club licenses limits the ability for veterans' clubs to  
          fundraise and support vital programs which provide assistance to  
          California veterans due to the fact that the club license  
          authorizes the sale of beverages for consumption within the  
          licensed establishment and only to  members of the veterans'  
          organization and their guests. This measure is intended to  
          expand this existing privilege and allow veterans' clubs to  
          invite the general public on the premises for beer and wine  
          tastings. 

          Prior/Related Legislation
          
          AB 2793 (Governmental Organization Committee), Chapter 273,  
          Statutes of 2010.  Among other things, authorized the Department  
          of ABC to issue a club license to nonprofit lawn bowls' clubs  
          that do not discriminate or restrict membership, as specified.

          FISCAL EFFECT:                 Appropriation:  No    Fiscal  
          Com.:             No           Local:          No


            SUPPORT:  

          AMVETS, Department of California (sponsor)
          American Legion, Department of California
          California Association of County Veterans Service Officers
          California State Commanders Veterans Council
          Military Officers Association of America, California Council of  
          Chapters
          Jewish War Veterans
          Veterans of Foreign Wars, Department of California
          Vietnam Veterans of America, California State Council
           








          SB 685 (McGuire)                                   Page 4 of ?
          
          
          OPPOSITION:

          California Council on Alcohol Problems

          ARGUMENTS IN SUPPORT:    Proponents note that this measure would  
          give veteran organization posts which hold a veteran's club  
          license the opportunity to sell and serve alcohol within the  
          licensed establishment to members of the public as well as the  
          members of the post and their guests.  Proponents state that SB  
          685 would "enable posts to not only increase revenues from  
          non-member patrons, but could also grant them the ability to  
          utilize their post buildings for non-member community events."    

          
          ARGUMENTS IN OPPOSITION:   Writing in opposition, the California  
          Council on Alcohol Problems (CCAP) states that SB 685 "will  
          increase commute dangers and other safety concerns in  
          residential neighborhoods, generate additional cost to  
          taxpayers, and will legally permit community establishments to  
          morph into bars to peddle drinking as a means of fundraising,  
          under the guise of tasting events."  
          
          DUAL REFERRAL:  Senate Appropriations Committee