Washington State Mulls Out-of-State Retailers Shipping Wine to Local Consumers

Out-of-state retailers would be allowed to ship a bottle of wine to a consumer in Washington State under a bill being considered by the legislature.  Presently, out-of-state wineries can ship direct to consumers, but not out-of-state retailers.

The out-of-state retailers would have to get a permit and pay state and local taxes as well as a sales tax.  “It’s the exact same rules under which out-of-state wineries currently ship,” says Tom Wark, executive director of the National Association of Wine Retailers (NAWR).

Scott Hazelgrove, representing Washington Wine and Beer Distributors Association, testified that his father frequently receives wine from LastBottle.com, a California-based retailer.

“This is a company that is not collecting and remitting taxes, or the [Liquor and Cannabis Board] would clearly know that they are an out-of-state retailer selling in violation of the law,” he says. “The last thing we should be doing is expanding a system that isn't currently working.”