Warren liquor reform bill passes House

The bill includes an emergency provision that would allow certain licensed restaurants and hotels to sell prepared mixed drinks during COVID-19

State Rep. Perry Warren, D-Bucks, announced his liquor reform bill H.B. 327 passed the House today with overwhelming bipartisan support. The bill would amend the Liquor Code to clarify the process for a referendum on whether to allow for the sale of liquor in their municipality in a primary, municipal or general election.

“The passage of this bill, coupled with Act 48 enacted last year, streamlines the process for residents’ right to decide whether to permit alcohol sales in a municipality,” Warren said. “This bill is about modernizing the state liquor system to better suit the needs of Pennsylvanians.”

House Bill 327 also has a COVID-19 emergency provision which would allow licensed restaurants and hotels that have lost more than 25 percent of their average monthly sales during the disaster to sell prepared beverages or mixed drinks for off-premise consumption in quantities of 4 oz. to 64 oz. during the disaster emergency and mitigation period.

“This amendment will support our local restaurants selling food, beer and wine for curbside pickup and takeout during this time of crisis by allowing them to expand the products they can provide to consumers,” Warren said. “I thank my colleagues on both sides of the aisle for supporting this legislation.”

Lower Makefield Township has scheduled a liquor referendum for the June 2 primary election. The bill now goes to the Senate for vote on the bill.