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H.712

Introduced by   Representatives Marron of Stowe, Deen of Westminster, Dunsmore of Georgia, Livingston of Manchester, McAllister of Highgate, O’Donnell of Vernon, Perry of Richford, Severance of Colchester, Smith of New Haven, Winters of Swanton and Zuckerman of Burlington

Referred to Committee on

Date:

Subject:  Alcoholic beverages; drinking age; alcohol education; alcohol license

Statement of purpose:  This bill proposes to permit a person who is 18 years old, but not yet 21, to consume alcoholic beverages when in the presence of a parent or legal guardian and to permit certain 18- to 20‑year‑old Vermont residents or full-time students in a Vermont postsecondary educational institution to acquire a license that would permit the licensee to purchase and use alcoholic beverages.

AN ACT RELATING TO USE OF ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES BY INDIVIDUALS WHO ARE THE AGE OF MAJORITY

It is hereby enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:

Sec. 1.  7 V.S.A. § 2(26) and (31) are amended to read:

(26)  As used in this title, “minor” means a person an individual who has not attained the age of 21, but does not include an individual who has attained the age of 18 and is one of the following:

(A)  A holder of a valid alcohol license issued pursuant to section 242 of this title.

(B)  Possessing or consuming alcoholic beverages in the presence of the individual’s parent or legal guardian.  

(31) “Legal age” means 21 years of age or older, but means 18 years of age or older if the individual is one of the following:

(A)  A holder of a valid alcohol license issued pursuant to section 242 of this title.

(B)  Possessing or consuming alcoholic beverages in the presence of the individual’s parent or legal guardian

Sec. 2.  7 V.S.A. § 242 is added to read:

§ 242.  ALCOHOL USE BY INDIVIDUALS 18 YEARS OR OLDER;

            ALCOHOL EDUCATION; ALCOHOL LICENSE

(a)  An individual who has attained the age of 18 may possess and consume alcoholic beverages when the individual is in the presence of the individual’s parent or legal guardian.

(b)  An “eligible individual,” which for the purposes of this section means an individual who is 18 years old but not yet 21, has completed secondary education, and is either a Vermont resident or a full-time student in a Vermont institution of postsecondary education, may enroll in an alcohol education course conducted or certified by the department of liquor control.  The course shall be designed by the department and require at least 42 hours of education.  The department may charge a fee for the course in an amount that reflects the actual costs of conducting the program.

(c)  The department may issue to an eligible individual an alcohol license that permits the licensee to purchase, possess, and consume alcoholic beverages if the eligible individual complies with all the following:

(1)  Has successfully completed the alcohol education course required in subsection (b) of this section, as determined by the department.

(2)  Has submitted to the department a fee in the amount of $25.00.

(3)  Has no violations of section 656 or 657 of this title.  However, an eligible individual who has any violations of those sections shall be prohibited from acquiring an alcohol license for 12 months for each violation from the date the individual became eligible.

(d)  When the department grants an alcohol license to an eligible individual, the department of motor vehicles shall issue a photographic alcohol license in a form approved by the department of liquor control to the applicant, provided the applicant submits sufficient photographic identification and written approval for the license from the department of liquor control.  This alcohol license shall be effective until the licensee reaches the age of 21 or is found to have violated any laws relating to the use or possession of alcoholic beverages in Title 7 or Title 23, in which case the license shall be revoked.  Revocation of this license shall not affect the individual’s right to purchase, possess, or consume alcoholic beverages when the individual reaches the age of 21.



Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont


www.leg.state.vt.us