Bill would end some Michigan alcohol regulations

Would eliminate outdated regulations, increase size of the industry

Published On: Feb 22 2013 04:20:31 AM EST   Updated On: Feb 22 2013 04:23:38 AM EST
LANSING, Mich. -

Legislation in the Michigan Senate would overhaul regulation of the state's alcohol industry.

Sen. Howard Walker said Thursday the bill he introduced this week would eliminate outdated regulations and increase the size of the industry. The Traverse City Republican wants to let microbrewers have off-site tasting rooms and to allow more resort liquor licenses and beer and wine festivals.

One change would make it harder to prosecute those who sell alcohol to someone who's intoxicated. The bill says stores and bartenders would have to "knowingly allow" an intoxicated person to be served rather than simply "allow" it.

The legislation incorporates many recommendations unveiled last summer by Gov. Rick Snyder's Office of Regulatory Reinvention.

Beverage producers and police and school groups opposed some changes.