Kansas Association
of Beverage Retailers





Senate Introduces Big Box Bill with Local Option - Hearing March 31

26 Mar 2015 8:42 PM | Anonymous

Senate Hearing next Tuesday, March 31 Provides New Opportunity for Retailers

Show Up to Topeka Tuesday, March 31!

The public hearing on SB 298 will begin at 10:30 a.m. in Room 346-S (the old supreme court room) with proponents speaking first.  The Committee will break for lunch, then return to hear the balance of the testimony.  It could extend up to 2:00 p.m.   Coffee and donuts will be provided outside the hearing room beginning at 8:00 a.m. Tuesday.

The Senate Hearing next Tuesday on new Big Box Liquor Bill SB 298 provides a late session opportunity for retailers to make a big impression on Kansas senators.  There has been no action in the Senate on any Uncork bills since 2011, when SB 54 was passed out of committee and then sat on general orders for the rest of the session – unable to garner enough support from the full Senate for a vote.

While KABR has urged members to talk to Representative and Senators each year about the Big Box Liquor issue, many retailers have put most of their focus on the House of Representatives – where the action was.   Meanwhile, Uncork has hired even more lobbyists to spread their message in the Capitol.

SB 298 is similar to HB 2200 as it came out of the House Commerce Committee.  However, the bill includes a county option for corporate chain liquor sales – either by county commission resolution or by petition and election.  It also seems to forego the three year delay for big box and grocery stores where a local election adopts corporate chain sales.

Read SB 298 here

Contact Information for Senators Linked Here.

Action Items:    (scroll to bottom of this message for more tools)

1.        RSVP – Show Up on Tuesday for the Senate Hearing on SB 298 -  

We must make an impression!   RSVP Here.

2.        Send your written testimony to Amy at KABR email by midnight Sunday night.  We need updated testimony from you, your accountant, lawyer, friends, pastor, mayor, sheriff.

3.        Contact your Senator and Representative – Set up a meeting on Tuesday for before or after the hearing.  The hearing is expected to run 10:30 to 12 noon (but you could leave a few minutes early to meet your legislator for lunch) then resume at 1:00 p.m. or so.  Meet in their office, meet for lunch, meet for dinner or a drink.  You must let your senator and representative know that you will be in Topeka and set up a time to talk to them while you are there.  Either or both of them may end up voting on Big Box Liquor before this session ends.  Could be next week, could be during veto session when they come back to Topeka April 29.

4.        Generate phone calls and emails to Senators and Representatives to oppose Big Box legislation.  While there are some legislators who are hearing from a lot of opponents.  There are several who have told me they are discouraged at the lack of communication.  Even if you know your legislator supports you – he or she needs to hear from your employees, customers, vendors, church members, community leaders, local law enforcement in order to support his or her position.  You must provide that support.   

Kansas Association of Beverage Retailers       P.O. Box 3842, Topeka, KS  66604      Email KABR  

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