liquor commission

JOE SHLABOTNIK / FLICKR/CREATIVE COMMONS

The New Hampshire Legislature is scheduled to vote this week on a bill that cuts the Liquor Commission’s budget for the next fiscal year. The size of that cut, though, is far less than what’s called for under state statute.

Since 2015, there’s been a law in place that automatically reduces the Liquor Commission’s budgeted appropriation if the state-run liquor stores don’t generate a targeted amount of revenue for the general fund.

Shunichi kouroki via Flickr CC / https://flic.kr/p/pQoYLt

The New Hampshire Liquor Commission, which operates the state’s liquor stores, says it plans on getting into the business of shipping wine directly to consumers.

But at the same time, in its role as a regulator, the commission has been taking steps to limit out-of-state wine retailers from selling to New Hampshire customers, making the business of ordering a favorite Bordeaux a lot more complicated.  

New York State Department of Taxation and Finance

A week after requesting information about possible contacts between the New Hampshire Liquor Commission and a New York man charged with bootlegging, the IRS is now withdrawing its summons, according to the Commission.

N.Y. Tax Department of Taxation

Internal Revenue Service agents want to review communications between New Hampshire state liquor store employees and two New York residents, one of whom was arrested in that state in December on charges of bootlegging.

Todd Bookman/NHPR

Agents from the Internal Revenue Service made unannounced visits to New Hampshire liquor stores last week, according to multiple sources. The action comes in the wake of allegations made by an elected official that the state-run stores aren’t doing enough to stop potentially illegal all-cash transactions, exposing the state and liquor store employees to possible lawsuits and harm.

Courtesy of NH Liquor Commission

The New Hampshire Liquor Commission has fired a retail employee who it says violated policies by improperly completing a large all-cash sale at a state liquor store last month.

That transaction, involving $24,000 worth of Hennessy cognac, is at the heart of allegations being made Executive Councilor Andru Volinsky into wrongdoing by the Liquor Commission.

Lauren Chooljian/NHPR

Large all-cash transactions. Out-of-state customers going store to store to buy enormous quantities of Hennessy cognac. Employees unsure about how to handle potentially illegal liquor sales.

After receiving allegations about potential money laundering taking place at state-run New Hampshire liquor stores, Gov. Chris Sununu says the source of the allegations--an elected official--may have acted improperly in gathering information.

Andru Volinsky, Letter to Governor and Attorney General

Executive Councilor Andru Volinsky is calling for an investigation into the New Hampshire Liquor Commission, alleging that the state’s liquor stores are engaging in business practices that could “unquestionably facilitate money laundering related to criminal activities.”

Weekly N.H. News Roundup: February 16, 2018

Feb 15, 2018

We parse the Governor's State of the State address for what it might tell us about his agenda for the state in 2018.  EPA chief Scott Pruitt jets into New Hampshire to meet privately about water contamination.  NHPR's Todd Bookman  unpacks allegations made against the NH Liquor Commission. And we follow up on the court battle over the lottery ticket that's been called the "most valuable piece of paper on Earth."  

GUESTS:  

Via Penuche's Ale House's Facebook page

Sam Penkacik looks hip enough to hang out a bar in Brooklyn, but New Hampshire enough to show up to the NHPR studio in a t-shirt, even though it’s below freezing.

Or maybe he hasn’t bought a new jacket since he moved back from San Diego.

"The bars out there - like I really got into the craft cocktail scene out there because there’s a lot to experience. I mean it’s a city, so you’re going to have a lot more options," Sam told me.

Keno in N.H. Starts Friday, Lottery Plans Rollout

Dec 14, 2017
AP

  The electronic bingo game Keno can be officially played in New Hampshire, as of Friday.

Joe Shlabotnik / Flickr/Creative Commons

 

A New Hampshire judge has dismissed a Pennsylvania liquor distributor's suit alleging corruption in the state Liquor Commission's awarding of a 20-year, $200 million warehousing contract.

XTL-NH was the second highest bidder for the contract, which was given to Ohio-based Exel Inc. in 2013.

Judge Richard McNamara of the Merrimack County Superior Court rejected XTL's suit, calling it "nothing more than the grousing of a disappointed bidder."

Paige Sutherland/NHPR

UPDATE: On Thursday the New Hampshire Senate without debate killed a bill that would have repealed a law requiring ex-felons to get a waiver from the state liquor commission in order to serve alcohol to the public. Original story follows below.

If you want to work as a server or bartender in New Hampshire, and you have a felony on your record, you have to do a little more than just fill out the application – you also need approval from the state liquor commission.

This requirement has been on the books since 1969 and an effort to change it, goes before the state Senate Thursday afternoon.

The N.H. Senate has voted to undo a policy that would penalize the state liquor commission for not hitting financial targets. Senators fear enforcing budgets cuts at liquor will hurt overall state revenues. 

Under a provision tucked into the current state budget, the liquor commission is supposed to trim spending to offset any shortfall in revenue, up to five percent of its budget. Liquor was expected to generate $144 million dollars by July, but is now likely to fall millions of dollars short.

Joe Shlabotnik / Flickr/Creative Commons

 

New Hampshire has pulled hundreds of bartending guides after workers complained that the drink manuals contained sexually explicit and derogatory drink names.

The Concord Monitor reports that the New Hampshire Liquor Commission paid $3,300 for 500 copies of the "The Bartender's Black Book Tenth Edition" as a resource for retail store employees to answer consumer questions.

Workers started complaining in April about dozens of drink titles including "stripper mom" and "panty dropper."

In July, Gov. Maggie Hassan told the commission to recall the guides.