TABC News & Updates | December 2019
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Empowering Texas Veterans
TABC has launched a new effort to help military veterans who are starting a business in the alcoholic beverage industry. The Empowering Texas Veterans initiative includes a website with resources for starting a business and a mentorship program that will pair a veteran mentor who has an established business in the alcohol industry with a veteran protégé who is seeking to begin a business. The mentor will advise the protégé on issues and challenges associated with establishing a new company.

TABC Disaster Assistance
Businesses impacted by the severe weather event that began on October 20 may be eligible for certain regulatory relief. Read this industry notice and visit TABC's Disaster Assistance webpage for more information.
TABC licensing staff works to ensure everyone seeking to conduct licensed/permitted activities meets state law requirements and to approve qualified applicants as quickly as possible.

Make Sure Your Contact Information is Current
Licensed/permitted businesses are required to have accurate contact information on file with TABC at all times. TABC uses mail, email, and calls to contact businesses on matters that are critical to their operation. If TABC is unable to contact a business, the business’s license/permit is subject to suspension or cancellation and pending applications will not be processed. If your business’s contact information changes, update it with TABC’s Licensing staff.

Reminder About Bond Cancellations
Bonds are required for certain TABC-licensed/permitted businesses. Thus, when a bond is cancelled, TABC requires specific documentation from the licensed/permitted business. As a courtesy, TABC notifies a business if their bond company cancels their bond. Please contact TABC’s Licensing Division promptly if your business receives such a notice. Failure to respond to this notice could result in the cancellation of your license or permit.

Wait Times for Original License/Permit Applications
It takes TABC approximately 50 days from the date it receives a complete application to issue a license/permit. Plan ahead if you wish to open a business or a new location.

Remember to Renew Online
License/permit holders are responsible for monitoring their license/permit expiration date and filing a timely renewal application to ensure they experience no disruption in business operations. Make sure you are current with city and county fees prior to renewing.
TABC auditors investigate, inspect, and educate TABC-licensed/permitted businesses in order to ensure compliance with licensing, tax, and marketing laws.

Delinquent Compliance Reports
December 1 was the deadline for TABC license and permit holders to submit a compliance report for each of their licensed/permitted locations in Texas. However, TABC is providing a 30-day grace period (ends December 31) to submit the reports using the TABC: Compliance Reporting mobile device app. This ultimately saves you time in complying with the law.

Click here to learn how to register for and conduct a compliance report, and watch the success story of liquor store owner Betty Lewis, 75, in the short video below.
New Monthly Excise Tax Reports for Texas Manufacturers and Brewers
Texas Manufacturers and Brewers must now use new monthly report forms, which were updated due to new laws that allow certain breweries to conduct beer-to-go sales. The updated forms are available on TABC’s website. Click here for more information .

Wait Times for Label Approval
  • Distilled Spirits: 15 days (down nine days from October).
  • Malt Beverages: 14 days (down 13 days from October).
  • Wine: 21 days (down 12 days from October). 
TABC conducts enforcement operations on TABC-licensed/permitted locations to keep communities safe and protect businesses complying with the law. In special circumstances, TABC offers assistance to fellow law enforcement entities.

Preventing Human Trafficking
The 86th Legislative Session established the prevention of human trafficking at licensed and permitted locations as a TABC priority. TABC and the alcoholic beverage industry have a duty to prevent this form of modern-day slavery at licensed locations across Texas. You can help in three simple ways:

TABC has engaged in several human trafficking operations that have led to arrests, the liberation of victims, and the closure of permitted businesses that supported trafficking activities.

Public Safety Notice for Austin Retailers
To assist Governor Abbott's goal to promote public health and safety in Austin, TABC is reminding alcohol retailers in Austin of their duty to prevent common public safety risks on their premises, which may include sidewalks, parking lots, or other areas they control.

Preventing Alcohol Sales to Minors
In October, TABC released a report on the results of its annual statewide Back-to-School Undercover Operations . These are timed to coincide with the start of the fall semester at colleges across Texas in order to have the maximum effect in enforcing state laws that prohibit the sale of alcohol to minors. The operations found that 145 retailers out of 1,800 visited (8 percent) sold alcohol to a minor. This violation rate is lower than the statewide average violation rate of nearly 10 percent. Retailers that need information about avoiding sales to minors can download free educational materials at . Business owners can also request free training by TABC auditors on best practices to avoid selling alcohol to minors.
Access TABC’s commission meeting archives for past agendas, documents, decisions, and full video recordings of the meetings.

Two New Commissioners at TABC
Following a change in the law this year that expanded the number of TABC commissioners from three to five, Governor Greg Abbott has appointed two new Commissioners to the TABC :
  • Commissioner Scott Adkins of El Paso is the president of PyroCom Systems, a fire and security company, and he is the CEO of Currey Adkins, an information technology company. Adkins received a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance and Accounting from Texas Christian University.
  • Commissioner Debbie Marino of San Antonio is the senior vice president of Corporate Relations at SWBC, where she coordinates national, state, and local relationships with non-profit, trade, civic, and other corporate industry groups. Marino received a Bachelor of Science in Journalism from Texas A&M University.

Rules Recently Adopted
TABC Commissioners adopted six rules during their November 26 meeting:
  • New Rule 31.13, Enhanced Contract Monitoring
  • New Rule 33.28, Consumer Delivery Permit Fee
  • New Rule 33.29, Registration of Nonresident Brewer's/Manufacturer's Agent
  • Amendments to Rule 34.3, Schedule of Sanctions and Penalties for Major Violations
  • New Rule 41.57, Warehouse Registration
  • Amendments to Rule 45.105, Advertising

Rules Published in the Texas Register for Public Comment
TABC Commissioners approved publication of five proposed rules during their November 26 meeting:
  • New Rule 31.6, Advisory Committees
  • New Rule 35.50, Physical Inspection of Licensed and Permitted Premises
  • New Rule 35.51, Risk-Based Inspection of Licensed and Permitted Premises
  • New Rule § 41.18, Providing Retailer Samples: Distiller's and Rectifier's Permit
  • New Rule § 41.19, Providing Retailer Samples: Non-Resident Seller

The deadline to provide public comments is Monday, January 13, 2020 . Formal written comments may be submitted to Shana Horton, TABC Rules Attorney by email to .

Stakeholder Meeting on Draft Rules (not yet proposed to commissioners)
TABC will hold a stakeholder meeting on Friday, December 13 at 11 AM at TABC Headquarters to discuss draft rules related to new state laws: the removal and disposal of damaged products, an alcohol delivery driver training program, and minimum requirements for alcohol delivery software and applications. TABC plans to propose these draft rules during the January 28 commission meeting for publication in the Texas Register.

TABC's Next Commission Meeting
Tuesday, January 28, 2019 , at TABC Headquarters . All information and documents for this meeting can be found here when they become available.
Advisories provide guidance on regulatory issues impacting industry to ensure consistent statewide application of laws and rules.
  • TABC is currently considering publishing an Advisory on merchandising services that are provided to retailers. TABC solicited public comments on the draft in October.
  • No new advisories have been published since the last Industry Brief. 
TABC Talks
TABC’s monthly webcast helps you comply with state laws and regulations.
Recent Industry Events TABC Has Participated In
October 1: North Texas Winery Association Meeting
October 3: Texas Municipal Clerks Association’s Lone Star Chapter Meeting
October 8: Texas Distilled Spirits Association Board Meeting
October 22: Art of the Gala
October 30: Greater Houston Restaurant Association’s 8 th Annual Restaurant Industry Summit
October 30: Greater Houston Retailers Cooperative Association’s C-Store Trade Show

Upcoming Industry Events TABC Will Participate In
December 3: Texas Distilled Spirits Association Board Meeting
February 24: Texas Restaurant Association Board Meeting  
Upcoming TABC Events
December 4: Distributor’s Executive Summit
December 13: Stakeholder Meeting on Draft Rules
December 19: Human Trafficking Training for Ben E. Keith’s Dallas Personnel
January 8: Human Trafficking Training for Ben E. Keith’s Denton and Frisco Personnel   
Check out the Industry Brief Archive for previous publications.
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