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An Unfortunate Direct Shipping License Clarification in Texas

Wineries applying for a Texas Direct Wine Shipper’s Permit or renewing their existing permit must now pay a surcharge of $160 in addition to the $75 annual permit fee. Currently the Direct Shipper’s permit is renewed annually. However, beginning January 1, 2009 all Direct Shipper licenses will be valid for two years. Applicants will have to pay license fees and surcharges for 2 years totaling $470 when applying for a permit in 2009. The Texas Alcohol Beverage Commission added significant surcharges to a wide range of licenses affecting both in-state and out-of-state applicants.

Annie Bones, State Relations – Wine Institute

Good News from Texas

On September 1, 2008 Texas will begin requiring direct shipping reports to be submitted on a quarterly basis. Reports will be due within 15 days of the completion of every 3 month quarter. Currently, direct shippers must file a report and pay taxes every month. The new report will no longer require direct shippers to report the common carrier tracking number for each shipment, the name of the common carrier will be sufficient.

All permit holders have been mailed a copy of the Quarterly Direct Shipper’s Report by the Texas Alcohol Beverage Commission and the form will soon be available on the TABC and Wine Institute website. The last monthly reporting period is August 2008. Shipments sent on or after September 1, 2008 should be included in the quarterly report.

Texas Quarterly Shipper Report

Annie Bones, State Relations – Wine Institute

Another Paper Return Bites the Dust: Required Electronic Filing in New York (Due July 15th)

On July 1st, 2008, New York announced that their semi-annual “New York Wine Manufacturer’s Report of All Wine Directly Sold and Shipped” is required to be filed online. Shipments made from January 1, 2008 to June 30, 2008 must be reported to the New York Liquor Authority by July 15th, 2008. Online submission of the report consists of emailing data files, in a .csv or .xls format to Direct.Shipment@abc.state.ny.us.

Even though the new reporting format was forced upon direct shippers rather abruptly, for many, filing the Wine Manufacturer’s Report electronically is a much more reasonable request than the old paper format. Because the old paper format contained only twelve rows per page on which to report detailed order information (one product per row, per shipment), the report was sometimes more than 500 pages long! That’s some serious paper waste.

Information that is reported in the new electronic format is very similar to the information reported in the old paper format. Among details to be reported via the data file: product name, COLA numbers for each product shipped, quantity shipped, price paid by the purchaser, the name and address of the purchaser, and the name and address of the common carrier.

You can view further information on the new requirement and New York’s instructions for submission on the New York State Liquor Authority’s website. Remember, the use of paper forms to submit the required information is no longer permitted. All reports containing the required information must be submitted by way of a computer data file.

TTB Expo 2008

The ShipCompliant research team is attending the first annual TTB Expo at the Northern Kentucky Convention Center, just outside of Cincinnati, today and tomorrow. The turnout here is quite impressive. In the opening remarks, the TTB team said their original goal was to get about 300 attendees from across the country. They had over 650 pre-register, and it seems like the actual attendance today is more like 1,000.

The turnout from the wine industry is equally impressive. We’ve run into a number of friends and partners in the industry from across the country today.

John J. Manfreda, Administrator of the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB), gave an excellent keynote address this morning, stressing an open dialog between the TTB and key industry stakeholders. They seem genuinely committed to listening to the industry to improve the ease of compliance with TTB regulations. If you have any questions or topics that you would like to get answers to while we are here, please feel free to leave a comment on this post or to drop us a private email at blog (at) shipcompliant (dot) com.