You could make your own alcohol in Ohio if new bill passes

COLUMBUS, Ohio — A new bill introduced in the Ohio Senate would allow Ohioans to manufacture and consume moonshine.

Moonshine, which is usually home-made distilled liquor made illegally, has been banned since before the ban.

As co-founder of Black Yeti Beverages, Eric Truehart tackles alcohol every day. It’s time for Ohio to update its liquor laws, he said.

“The Moonshine Act is a remnant of prohibition, not enacted to stop people’s safety or individuals.” They were put in place to stop organized crime like Al Capone. “

Senate Bill 13 allows everyone in Ohio over the age of 21 to make, drink and serve moonshine as long as they don’t charge a fee. The law, introduced by Senator Frank Hoagland (Republican Mingo Junction), allows one person to produce up to 100 gallons per year, but two or more people in her household can produce up to 200 gallons per year. can be produced.

According to the bill, distilleries could only serve alcohol to family, neighbors, co-workers and friends on private property located in the state. I allow it.

“It’s a fun hobby, something you can share with your friends, and it gets even better,” said Trueheart.

Michael Benza, a professor at Case Western Reserve University, said some people could set their homes on fire if they didn’t make a lot of flammable liquids at home and didn’t have the proper training.

“You may want to take out insurance,” Benza said.[But] Insurance is legal under Ohio law and illegal under federal law, so getting insurance can be tricky. ”

He said that even if Ohio passed the bill, the manufacture of liquor would still violate federal law.

“It creates tension between the two levels of government,” he added.

The federal government could treat it like marijuana, he said.

“The federal government often refrains from prosecuting in states where prosecution is legal, at least within state law,” he said.

Ohio is not the first state to legalize the production of moonshine.

Even in Arizona, distilling requires a permit. Consumers may consume alcohol only on Massachusetts property.

North Dakota allows it too — in a way. Distillers can make private moonshine up to the number of gallons allowed by the federal government (zero), so they can produce zero gallons of moonshine in the state. This is likely to be a trigger law, meaning that if federal law changes, state law will quickly follow suit.

Benza is unsure why the bill was introduced to the General Assembly so early given that it affects a very niche group of people. I theorized that it might be a way to start chipping away at some of the .

This isn’t the first time Congressman Hoagland has proposed legislation to remove or reduce licenses. At the 134th GA, which was reintroduced this week, lawmakers proposed a bill that would allow veterans to be taught without an educational background. He also rewrote a bill to reduce the amount of training for bringing firearms into schools.

“It’s also very interesting from a political science perspective that it comes from a Republican-dominated General Assembly, which has historically been a very conservative social policy,” Benza said.

While the bill doesn’t include any other regulations, restrictions, or government oversight of the home distillation process, Trueheart has some advice.

“I can’t sit down and drink 200 gallons by myself,” he laughs. “That’s bad”

News 5 reached out to both the bill’s sponsors and the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Authority, but received no response.

Follow WEWS State Capitol Correspondent Morgan Trau twitter and Facebook.

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