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Ex-law enforcement group opposes NY distilleries from directly shipping to customers: ‘Recipe for disaster’

Ex-law enforcement opposes NY distilleries from making shipments to customers

New York’s wineries have had the right to make direct home shipments since 2005.

“Direct to consumer shipping has been proven to weaken alcohol beverage control and contribute to increased underage drinking,” said the Coalition for Responsible Alcohol Shipping, headed by former New York City Sheriff Edgar Domenech, also former deputy director of the US Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms & Explosives, in a new letter to Hochul.

“Investigations across the country have illustrated that alcohol shipment to underage consumers without age verification is commonplace where direct shipping is legal,” the group said.

“One would think that the state’s recent catastrophe rolling out recreational cannabis would be instructive: expanding access to adult products without proper enforcement is a recipe for disaster.”

The group claimed that the State Liquor Authority lacks the administrative capacity to handle a significant increase in enforcement.

“Now is not the time to weaken the state’s liquor laws to enrich a small group of private businesses at the expense of public health and safety,” the letter said.

The bill passed both houses of the legislature but it has yet to be sent to Hochul’s desk.

“Gov. Hochul will review the legislation,” a rep told The Post.

New York is home to about 200 craft distilleries whose alcohol products such as bourbon are sourced from local farms that would benefit from shipments in the online market.

One lawmaker who authored the bill claimed the group of retired cops and regulators in the opposition group is carrying water for the liquor store industry.

The Metropolitan Package Association and the state Liquor Store Association oppose the legislation, as do large distributors.

“They didn’t exist before two months ago. They’re a front group,” said state Sen. James Skoufis (D-Cornwall), of Domenech’s group.

“If there was an actual safety concern — there’s not — you would see legitimate police groups raise objections. They haven’t,” Skoufis said.

“They didn’t exist before two months ago. They’re a front group,” said state Sen. James Skoufis (D-Cornwall), of Domenech’s group.

State Sen. Andrew Gounardes (D-Brooklyn) held a press conference Monday at  Barrow’s Intense Ginger Liqueur & NY Tasting Room in the Industry City complex in Brooklyn urging Hochul to approve the legislation.

Barrow’s is known for its crafted ginger liqueur and wants to ship its 44-proof bottles directly to consumers in New York and across the country.

Gounardes said he has more micro-craft distillers in his district than anywhere in the state, and a handful of them were in attendance.

“This [law] will be a huge economic boon for small businesses here,” the senator  said.

Brian Facquet, president of the New York State Distillers Guild, said, “This bill is a step toward fairness. This will allow us to get bottles shipped across the country.”

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