Gov. Butch Otter’s legislation to do away with Idaho’s 62-year-old quota system for liquor licenses cleared the state Senate today on a 23-12 vote, and now heads to the House. Among the concerns raised by opponents was that the measure would weaken penalties for those who sell to underage drinkers. The current system sets population-based quotas for liquor licenses, but has allowed 235 licenses to be issued outside those quotas under special exceptions approved by the Legislature. The new system would let cities and counties issue new non-transferable licenses, while existing licenses would remain transferable. Developed by a task force over the past two years, the bill, SB 1148, also makes a series of other changes; here’s a link to it.
Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.
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