Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Virginia State News

January 31, 2014

Va officials relax restrictions on happy hour ads

— — Virginia officials are changing the way bars and restaurants around the state can advertise happy hour specials.

The Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control had prohibited happy hour ads, except inside a restaurant, for fear of encouraging overdrinking.

But The Virginian-Pilot reports that now businesses can advertise happy hour in outlets such as radio, newspapers and Facebook.

Restaurants and bars are permitted to advertise the time frame for happy hour, which generally provides discounts on drinks in the late afternoon or early evening. Many also have food specials.

They can use the phrases “happy hour” and “drink specials” but can’t use the word “discounted” or name specific drinks or list most prices.

ABC officials say the department made changes after it reviewed its rules and spoke with business owners. The prohibition on advertising prices was retained so as to not start price wars between retailers.

Virginia will continue to require happy hour to end at 9 p.m., ABC spokeswoman Carol Mawyer said.

The advertising changes stemmed from a review of state regulations launched in 2011. They did not require legislative action, she said, but were approved by former Gov. Bob McDonnell’s administration, Mawyer said.

The agency will respond to the first violation of the happy hour ad rules with a written warning. But subsequent violations could trigger a fine of up to $2,000 and a seven-day suspension of a business’s liquor license.

According to ABC’s website, about 15 businesses statewide were fined for happy hour violations from July 2012 to June 2013.

1
Text Only
Virginia State News
West Virginia State News
AP Video
Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit New Bill Aims to Curb Sexual Assault on Campus Russia Counts Cost of New US, EU Sanctions 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey Raw: Obama Eats Ribs in Kansas City In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo NCAA Settles Head-injury Suit, Will Change Rules Raw: Amphibious Landing Practice in Hawaii Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA
Sister Newspapers' News