Legislators appear to be considering allowing a 10 percent discount on a half-case of wine, rather than at least a case or more. Photo from Wine Gallery Facebook page

WINE SALE: Ohio lawmakers may allow 10% off a HALF case

UPDATE:

John Fortney, spokesman for the Ohio Senate Majority Caucus, provided some clarification this afternoon, Thursday June 22, on the issue of discounts:

“The 10 percent discount is available for any number of cases if the retailer wants to offer it,” Fortney told reporter Lynn Hulsey in an email. “It just requires that the case be between 6 to 12 bottles. So you could have a case of 8 bottles, and you could buy however many cases you like, and the discount of 10 percent would be up to the retailer.”

Current law allows wineries to define a “case” for 10 percent discount purposes any way they want, as long as they are consistent across wholesale and retail sales channels, according to Donniella Winchell, executive director of the Ohio Wine Producers Association. Most wineries, and nearly all retailers, define a case as 12 standard-sized bottles, or six 1.5-liter bottles.

We will monitor the budget-bill language and how it may affect wine buyers in Ohio and bring you the latest updates.

Wine lovers, listen up: There appears to be a golden nugget of potentially good news nestled in the reams of documents being generated in Columbus as state legislators hammer out a final two-year state budget.

On page 2 of a document entitled “Amended Substitute House Bill 49/Senate Finance Committee Summary of OMNI Amendment” dated today, June 20, 2017, in the fourth bullet point out of 20 crammed onto the page, is this little gem about the budget proposal:

“Codifies an existing rule allowing liquor stores to offer a 10 percent retail discount on a case of wine, and allows the discount to be applied to purchases of not less than six bottles and not greater than 12 bottles.” (Emphasis added.)

RELATED: State may reduce tax break for small businesses

State law hasn’t allowed a discount on anything less than a full 12-bottle case of wine since, well, forever, has it?

Curious.

Here’s what we know for sure: The proposal is part of a slew of amendments to the Ohio Senate’s proposed two-year $130 billion biennial budget.

RELATED: New Ohio law allows for free alcohol tastings at retailers (May 2014)

The Senate Finance Committee today is considering the amendments and is expected to vote on a final version today before sending the measure to the full Senate on Wednesday.

The House passed a different version of the budget so a conference committee will come up with a final version of the 2018-2019 budget, which must be balanced and signed by the governor by June 30.

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