Iowa: Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division releases study of Iowa’s tied house laws

Mark Willingham Uncategorized

Iowa: Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division releases study of Iowa’s tied house laws

Study focuses on prohibited cross-tier ownership interests and will assist the Iowa legislature in determining whether Iowa’s tied house laws should be updated in 2019.

Source: The Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division

July 12, 2018

The Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division (ABD) released the Alcoholic Beverage Control Study on June 28, 2018. The study was ordered by the Iowa legislature and focuses on Iowa’s tied house laws, in particular prohibitions on cross-tier ownership interests in the three-tier system.

The study can be found at this link: https://www.legis.iowa.gov/docs/publications/DF/967633.pdf

“This study serves as the seminal work for understanding Iowa’s tied house laws in regards to prohibited cross-tier ownership interests,” said ABD Administrator Stephen Larson. “I am confident that this study will help the Iowa legislature determine if Iowa’s tied house laws adequately meet the needs of the modern marketplace and protect the welfare, health, peace, morals and safety of the people of Iowa.”

The study was ordered by the Iowa legislature through the passage of Senate File 516 during the 2017 legislative session. In conducting the study, ABD was to review Iowa Code section 123.45 – Iowa’s tied house law – and determine its impact on the ability of manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers to meet changing marketplace conditions and business opportunities.

“Our goal through the study was to provide relevant information to help the legislature better understand the complex – but important – tied house laws meant to protect the independence of the individual tiers within the three-tier system,” said Lolani Lekkas, an ABD compliance officer and author of the study.

The recommendations of the study are for the Iowa legislature to evaluate whether Iowa’s current tied house laws meet the public policy purpose of Iowa’s alcohol laws to protect the welfare, health, peace, morals and safety of Iowas; to determine whether the tied house laws are clear and concise; and to determine the reach and depth with which tied house prohibitions are intended to extend.

During the time period of the study and consideration of the issue by the Iowa legislature during the 2019 legislative session, the ABD administrator was granted the ability to defer on a final determination regarding the eligibility of applicants for a license or permit who may have prohibited cross-tier ownership interests. This ability to defer is repealed July 1, 2019.

About the Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division: The Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division serves Iowans through responsible and efficient licensing, regulation and distribution of alcohol. For more information about ABD, visit https://abd.iowa.gov

——