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(TRENTON) – The Senate Law and Public Safety Committee has advanced legislation by Senator Donald Norcross (D-Camden/Gloucester) to allow for the licensure of micro-distilleries in New Jersey. Earlier this year, Senator Norcross’s bill to update the state’s craft-brew industry was signed into law. Similarly to that bill, S2286 seeks to expand micro-distilleries in New Jersey as tourist destinations as well as job-creators.
“We have seen the success of craft breweries in New Jersey, as well as growing interest in craft-distilleries across the country,” said Senator Norcross. “By capitalizing on this interest and creating an industry around it, we can stimulate New Jersey’s economy in a sustainable way.”
A plenary distillery license costs $12,500 per year in New Jersey and has no production limits. These smaller distilleries would be limited to producing 20,000 gallons of distilled alcoholic beverage per year for a $938 license, and tour participants will be allowed to purchase up to five liters of distillery product for consumption off-site. Another condition of Norcross’s bill is that 51% of the materials must be sourced in New Jersey.
“These distilleries have the potential to become destinations, not just production facilities,” Senator Norcross added. “We’re opening our doors to new industry, creating jobs where there weren’t before. If we can do that while helping strengthen the businesses that already employ and support our residents, it becomes a win-win.”
The bill was passed out of committee by a vote of 3 to 2, and now awaits consideration by the full Senate.
Alexis Degan - 856-547-4800
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"Enlisting Fox is another reminder of how much Christie has truly relied on insiders, including Democrats, to bolster his agenda or bail him out of trouble. Not long after arriving in Trenton in 2009, Christie began collaborating with George Norcross, the deeply entrenched Democratic Party kingmaker, to help him cut deals with a Democratic-controlled Legislature.
When his close ally David Samson resigned as chairman of the Port Authority over conflict-of-interest questions earlier this year, Christie replaced Samson with John Degnan, a pillar of the Democratic Party establishment. And now, confronted with a crisis, Christie has turned to “Jamie,’’ as Fox has been known throughout political circles since he began as an aide in the Democratic Senate in the 1980s." - columnist Charles Stile
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