Question 3 proposes more outlets for alcohol sales – Lowell Sun

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Question 3 proposes more outlets for alcohol sales – Lowell Sun

THE HOUSE AND SENATE: There have been no roll calls within the Home or Senate final week. This week, Beacon Hill Roll Name continues its take a look at the questions that will likely be on the November poll for voter consideration. This week: Query 3: Further licenses for the gross sales of alcoholic drinks.

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QUESTION 3 — EXPANDS AVAILABILITY OF LICENSES FOR OFF-PREMISES CONSUMPTION OF ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES — The third query on the November poll asks voters in the event that they help a regulation that will enhance the statewide limits on the mixed variety of licenses that one retailer may management for the sale of alcoholic drinks and beer and wine for off-premises (non-restaurant and bar) consumption. Off-premises contains package deal shops, supermarkets and different venues the place alcohol could be bought however not consumed. The regulation would enhance the quantity from the present 9 to 12 licenses in 2023; 15 licenses in 2027 and 18 licenses in 2031.

Different provisions would prohibit retailers from permitting clients to self-checkout and would permit solely face-to-face checkout between a buyer and a cashier; permit retailers to simply accept an out-of-state drivers’ license as proof of age of consumers; and alter the present system of calculating the positive that the state is allowed to simply accept as an alternative of suspending a license due to a violation of the regulation. Present regulation bases the positive on the gross earnings of the sale of alcoholic drinks. The poll query would base the positive on the gross earnings of all retail gross sales.

The proposal is sponsored by the twenty first Century Alcohol Retail Reform Committee. Chief opposition to the proposal is listed because the Meals Shops for Client Alternative.

Listed here are the official arguments of the supporters and opponents as they seem within the Redbook — the guide, distributed by the Secretary of State to households throughout the state, which offers Data to voters on poll questions.

IN FAVOR:

Written by Rob Mellion

twenty first Century Alcohol Retail Reform Committee

www.masspak.org

“A ‘Yes’ vote fulfills shopper need for expanded comfort in an inexpensive and balanced method that additionally protects towards unlawful gross sales.

A ‘Yes’ vote expands comfort by step by step rising the full variety of alcoholic beverage licenses that any individual or firm can personal. Bundle shops, comfort shops, supermarkets, superstore retailers, and others will be capable of apply for extra licenses for his or her present places that don’t at present promote alcohol and for brand spanking new places they open.

A ‘Yes’ vote concurrently enhances public security and encourages vigilance by retailers via prohibiting self-checkout of alcohol drinks and basing the positive for promoting to a minor on a retailer’s whole gross sales and never simply its alcohol gross sales.

A ‘Yes’ vote additionally helps state tourism and brings Massachusetts in step with each different state within the nation by permitting for legitimate out of state IDs to be relied upon by alcohol beverage retailers.”

AGAINST:

The identify of the creator will not be revealed

Meals Shops for Client Alternative

www.FoodStoresMA.org (as famous earlier, the hyperlink to this web site doesn’t work).

“Our alcohol licensing legal guidelines do want severe reforms, however this poll measure will not be the reply. It affords an incomplete resolution to a fancy downside, doing little to advertise competitors or increase shopper selection.

Regardless of some superficially fashionable provisions designed to entice voters, it fails to carry outdated restrictions on native decision-making, whereas the truth is shifting Massachusetts backwards in a number of important methods: imposing unfair penalties towards retailers who promote extra than simply alcohol, like grocers and different meals shops; outlawing handy and dependable point-of-sale applied sciences already in widespread use by retailers throughout the state; and reducing the variety of full liquor licenses that retailers can personal.

This flawed method favors particular pursuits within the alcohol trade, on the expense of cash-strapped shoppers and their favourite native retailers.

We deserve extra. Vote ‘No’ on this query, and as an alternative ask your state lawmakers to help complete laws that may really make a distinction.”

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ALSO UP ON BEACON HILL

CHANGE DISTRIBUTION FORMULA FOR $2.9 BILLION IN TAX RELIEF (HD 5394) – Rep. Mike Connolly (D-Cambridge) has filed a invoice that will change the system for a way $2.9 billion in tax refunds will likely be distributed to taxpayers primarily based on Chapter 62F, a 1986 regulation authorised by the voters. That regulation requires that tax income above a certain quantity collected by the state return to the taxpayers on a proportional foundation equal to the quantity of state revenue tax they paid the state in 2021. Auditor Suzanne Bump has decided that the web state tax revenues of $41,812,654,358 for the fiscal yr ended June 30, 2022 is $2,941,499,731 above the allowable state tax revenues of $38,871,154,627.

Connolly’s measure would set up a $6,500 restrict on the utmost tax credit score a person taxpayer in Massachusetts can obtain below the necessary refund regulation.

Gov. Charlie Baker’s workplace has estimated that people’ refunds will whole about 13 % of how a lot a taxpayer paid to Massachusetts in private revenue tax in 2021. MassBudget says that the common millionaire will get a refund examine of an estimated $22,000, whereas the common low-income employee will obtain a mere $9.

“In this time of soaring inflation and economic hardship for so many of our constituents, the goal of this bill is to limit Chapter 62F tax credits for those with million-dollar incomes and then redistribute the resulting excess to taxpayers who have incomes under one million dollars,” mentioned Connolly. “Under our proposal, 99.4 percent of Ch. 62F refund recipients would see an additional $200 included in their refund checks next month. That’s why I’ve dubbed the bill ‘Putting More Money In More People’s Pockets.’ The fastest way to get this bill approved would be to include its concepts in the pending economic development bill or the closeout supplemental budget. For my part, I am advocating for a return to formal sessions if necessary because we understand many residents are being crushed by the rising cost of living and these bills could offer some additional relief.”

Co-sponsor Rep. Jamie Belsito (D-Topsfield) mentioned, “When I am at home talking with my mother who lives in senior housing, and she’s telling me that her friends in her housing complex can’t even buy food that they normally could have bought six to 12 months ago because of inflation—we’re not going to cut a $25,000 check for top earners in our state and turn around and say to our seniors, who are barely keeping it together, ‘here’s a $9 check for you.’”

RIGHT WHALE DAY (H 3869) – The Home authorised and despatched to the Senate a invoice that will set up an annual Proper Whale Day in Massachusetts on April 24.

“I filed this bill on behalf of a constituent from Pembroke, Matt Delaney, who had a special encounter with a right whale while visiting Cape Cod with his family a number of years ago,” mentioned sponsor Rep. Josh Cutler (D-Pembroke). “Matt wanted to do something to help promote the preservation of this critically endangered species and so we filed this bill together.”

The story was informed by Rob Moir, President and govt director of Ocean River Institute in Commonwealth Journal. Moir wrote:

“Ramona Delaney’s 93-year-old grandmother died peacefully on a Tuesday in April. The funeral service was held on Friday. On Saturday, Ramona, with husband Matt Delaney and 14-year-old daughter Katrina, purchased an over-sand permit for their jeep and drove out through the sand dunes of Race Point at the northernmost tip of Cape Cod. A ripple in the seawater quite close-by drew their attention. Suddenly, an enormous black head rose up. Gazing their way was a huge eye the size of a softball. The right whale wheeled forward and disappeared beneath the waves. Later, a right whale breached. Its entire body came out of the water and, rotating, it splashed down on its backside sending up great curtains of spray. The right whale breached many times over the course of about an hour.”

The Delaney household all felt this unbelievable, but intimate, encounter was an indication that Ramona’s grandmother was okay. They discovered the solace they had been in search of when the spirit of life shined brightly in an impressive proper whale on that day, April 24, 2004. The Delaney household has celebrated April 24 as whale day ever since and requested that this special occasion turn into a time when everybody within the Commonwealth can cherish North Atlantic proper whales.”

REVENUE COMMITTEE BILLS SENT TO A STUDY COMMITTEE – A number of payments affecting the state’s tax insurance policies had been despatched to a research committee the place payments are not often really studied and are basically defeated. It’s a option to kill a proposal with out holding a vote on the invoice itself. Listed here are among the income payments that had been despatched off to a research committee:

TAX EXEMPTIONS FOR DISABLED VETERANS (S 1934) – Would create property tax exemptions for the first properties of veterans who’re disabled on account of their service. The state would reimburse cities and cities for this exemption.

“In my mind, helping disabled veterans is never a question,” mentioned sponsor Sen. Mike Moore (D-Millbury). “Many vets struggle financially and struggle to find full time employment, resulting in a disproportionately high rate of poverty and homelessness among this group. By creating a property tax exemption for disabled veterans’ homes, we can help support those who have sacrificed so much for our country. I am saddened that this legislation will not be moving forward this session—a decision will be made on whether I will refile this legislation before the start of the next session.”

UP TO $250 TAX CREDIT FOR PURCHASE AND INSTALLATION OF PLANTS AND LANDSCAPING INTENDED TO REDUCE WATER USAGE (H 3058) – Would create a 25 % private revenue tax credit score of as much as $250, on the acquisition and set up of crops and landscaping gadgets supposed to scale back water utilization together with drought resistant crops that final for a couple of yr; kits or units particularly designed for producing compost; rainwater restoration and storage units the place they’re used for watering crops; and underground drip irrigation methods.

“The drought Massachusetts experienced this summer shows that we must prepare for greater weather extremes,” mentioned sponsor Rep. Paul Schmid (D-Westport) who plans to refile the invoice subsequent yr. “We should be getting ahead of possible water shortages now.”

FOUR MORE TAX REDUCTION BILLS – Sen. Patrick O’Connor (R-Weymouth) filed a number of payments that had been shipped off to a research committee together with:

S 1946: Permits a credit score for childcare prices as much as $3,000 per yr. The childcare supplier have to be licensed in Massachusetts and the kid have to be a dependent of the taxpayer.

S 1947: Employers who rent veterans inside 90 days of their honorable discharge obtain a credit score of $500 per 30 days for 12 months for every full-time veteran, and $750 per 30 days for 12 months for every disabled veteran. Every enterprise will get $50,000 for these credit per enterprise calendar yr.

S 1948: Offers a $2,500 tax credit score for a taxpayer who pays for greater than half of the bills of a relative over age 70 or of somebody disabled by Alzheimer’s/dementia. The relative will need to have lived with the taxpayer for a minimum of 6 months.

S.1950: Offers a credit score of as much as 20 % to a most of $5,000 towards the price of tuition for greater training. The credit score will likely be allowed for the taxable yr by which the tutoring was billed.

“These pieces of legislation would have made a difference for those who need it the most right now in our commonwealth—our small businesses, those caring for elderly relatives, parents, veterans and students,” mentioned O’Connor. “Although I am disappointed that these bills did not move further along in the legislative process this past session, I have hope that they can move forward next session upon re-filing.”

HOW LONG WAS LAST WEEK’S SESSION? Beacon Hill Roll Name tracks the size of time that the Home and Senate had been in session every week. Many legislators say that legislative classes are just one facet of the Legislature’s job and that a whole lot of necessary work is finished exterior of the Home and Senate chambers. They notice that their jobs additionally contain committee work, analysis, constituent work and different issues which might be necessary to their districts. Critics say that the Legislature doesn’t meet recurrently or lengthy sufficient to debate and vote in public view on the hundreds of items of laws which were filed. They notice that the infrequency and transient  size of classes are misguided and result in irresponsible late-night classes and a mad rush to behave on dozens of payments within the days instantly previous the tip of an annual session.

Through the week of Oct. 10-14, the Home met for a complete of 21 minutes and the Senate met for a complete of 25 minutes.

Bob Katzen welcomes suggestions at [email protected]

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