Washington Legislature Sends Direct-To-Consumer Bill To The Governor.

The Washington State Legislature passed a favorable direct-to-consumer shipment bill (ESB 6537), transitioning Washington from a reciprocal state to a permit state. This was done to ensure that our shipping privileges can be maintained without any Constitutional challenges in the future. With a wine shipper’s permit, wineries will be able to ship an unlimited amount of wine directly to Washington consumers. This is a significant increase from the current two cases annually. Certificate of approval holders are deemed to hold a wine shipper’s permit without payment of an additional fee. Wineries must collect and remit sales taxes, and pay excise taxes on all wine shipped directly. A winery may also advertise that direct shipment to consumers is available. Following the Governor Gregoire’s anticipated signature, the bill will take effect on or about June 7, 2006. The necessary permit applications and other required materials will be passed on to members as soon as they are available. For further information, please contact State Relations at (415) 356-7530.