Michigan’s new law requires beer keg identification tags

BEER KEGS will be sold with identification tags to be able to verify who purchased the keg beginning Nov. 1. 2011

The new Michigan law will require buyers to sign a receipt with their name, address, telephone number and driver’s license or state identification card number.

Isabella County Sheriff Leo Mioduszewski said the law will allow police to easily be able to identify who purchased the keg at a busted party.

“Right now, when we go to parties without tags on the kegs, no one knows where it came from,” he said. “Now this way we’ll know who is responsible for it.”

He said if nothing else, it will make the purchaser more responsible if they are serving to minors.

“Those who are caught serving to minors will get a ticket for a misdemeanor,” he said.

A $30 keg deposit will not be returned if the tag is unattached upon returning. Removing the tag is a misdemeanor punishable by up to 93 days in jail and a fine of up to $500.

Ken Los, co-owner of Bottle and Barrel, 1635 E. Broomfield St., Triple Deuce Party Store, LLC, 222 S. Washington St., and Pickard Party Store, 5114 E. Pickard St., said the new law will greatly affect his businesses.

“We’re expecting more than 75 percent of keg sales to go down,” he said. “We’ll begin taking orders for people who want them and carry less inventory.”

Los consequently expects package beer sales to increase.

“People will not be happy with the $30 deposit and there won’t be as many keg parties anymore,” he said.

The Pickard Party Store sells around 45 to 50 kegs a month, mostly to senior students, Los said.

“We expect only bigger parties like wedding receptions to be the only thing people will get kegs for,” he said. “As a college town, we are going to try to find the best way to serve our students.”

Canton junior Alex Ruedger said he thinks students should change the way they drink since it is just another way to get college kids in trouble.

“Stop buying kegs and start buying cases of beer,” Ruedger said. “It may not taste as good, but whoever puts their information on that keg will be going to jail whenever the police bust a party.”

This post was written by:
Jessica Fecteau – who has written 77 posts on Central Michigan Life.

Jessica is a senior reporter at Central Michigan Life.