In order for a bill to become law, the same bill number must pass both the House and the Senate. It then goes to the Governor. We introduced two Brewery Modernization Act bills in the legislature this year – one in the Senate (SB328) and one in the House (HB406). Although they are the same bill, only one must make it through both chambers.

Since SB328 has already passed the Senate, it would be pointless to pass HB406 today. It wouldn’t really accomplish anything, so do not expect a House vote today. Instead, we are focusing on moving the Senate-passed SB328 to a House vote. Unfortunately, that takes a mandatory amount of time.

At this time, SB328 has received its first reading in the House, which just means it has been introduced to the second chamber, and has been assigned to the House Tourism and Travel Committee.  After the committee gives it a favorable report, it will be reintroduced to the full House, its second reading. After that, we have to wait at least one more day before the House can put us on the Special Order Calendar for final passage, its third reading.

These are procedural requirements mandated by the Alabama Constitution and adopted legislative rules. I can’t tell you exactly how long the process will take because it’s dependent on the Tourism and Travel Committee’s schedule and agenda. Our plan is to get Tourism and Travel to approve the bill when they meet before the session on Tuesday. We then have to wait at least one more legislative day before we can be placed on the Special Order Calendar. So the earliest possible date for a House vote is Thursday. Realistically, we may have to wait until the week after that.