SERVICE OF ALCOHOL AT BEVERAGE MANUFACTURERS: The House passed SB 418 with amendment. As amended, it would allow wineries to sell up to one 5-ounce glass in lieu of 2-ounce samples, or if food is made available, to sell 2-five ounce glasses. Additionally, it would allow beverage manufacturers to serve one pint of their product in lieu of 4 oz samples, and two full pints if food is available. Meanwhile, a similar bill, HB 1725, remains on the table in the Senate. HB 1725 will eventually die on the table in the Senate. The House and Senate haven’t yet come to agreement on this issue, so they will likely create a committee of conference next week on SB 418 to try and resolve their differences.
LABOR LAW CHANGES: The Senate voted to non-concur with the House changes to SB 318 and to request a committee of conference with the House. As amended by the House, the bill increases the number of hours 16 or 17 year olds can work during shortened school weeks. Current law limits the number of hours during any school week to no more than 6 consecutive days or more than 30 hours. As amended, the bill keeps the 30 hour limit on regular school work weeks, but loosens it as follows: no more than 6 consecutive days or more than 40 hours if school is in session for 4 days that week; and no more than 6 consecutive days or more than 48 hours if school is in session from 1 to 4 days. The bill further makes it clear that employees can purchase company garments beyond any uniform that is purchased for the employee by the employer. Finally, it makes it clear that there will be no penalty for failure of an employer to provide notification to an employee concerning changes to their wage when the minimum wage is increased by statute. Senator Andy Sanborn was disappointed that the House removed many reforms the Senate had passed earlier this Session. He wants to try to get some of them incorporated back into the bill. NHLRA supports the bill.
ENTERTAINERS CONSUMING ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES WHILE PERFORMING: The Senate passed HB 1285, which would allow entertainers and “dancers” in establishments that are licensed to serve alcoholic beverages to drink alcohol while performing. The bill now goes to the governor for his signature.
SEPARATE BATHROOMS FOR EACH SEX: The Senate voted to lay HB1382 on the table. The bill would repeal the requirement that restaurants provide separate bathrooms for each sex. May 3 was the last day for the Senate to act on bills in its possession, so this means that HB 1382 will die on the table when the Session ends in three weeks.