Bill could slow Florida craft beer industry growth

SANTA ROSA BEACH, Fla. (AP) - Republican Senate President Don Gaetz is boasting in emails to beer lovers that he helped a craft brewery in his district get started. But now he's also supporting legislation that would hurt the same brewery.

Gaetz wrote the legislation that set up an economic development grant program with BP oil spill recovery money. In emails to people who oppose Senate bills that craft brewers say will hurt them, Gaetz is pointing out that Grayton Beer Company used the program to get started.

But Gaetz also supports a bill that brewery owner Jamey Price said would destroy the business plan he based his grant application on.

The bill would make brewers buy their own bottled beer from distributors before being able to sell it at their breweries, as they now can.


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