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Senate Bills could help beer brewers

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(TYLER MORNING TELEGRAPH) - A series of bills designed to grow the state's multi-billion craft brew market are on the way to the governor's desk after passing from the House today.

Sen. Kevin Eltife, R-Tyler, authored and successfully guided four Senate Bills that would give microbreweries and beer brewing entrepreneurs more access to the marketplace. He believes, as do many other legislators, that market access will translate into increased commerce and employment.

If micro-brews' place in the market follows the same trajectory as Texas wineries, which gained similar provisions in 2001, Eltife said economic impact studies show Texas breweries could create more than 55,000 jobs and $5.6 billion in commerce.

Eltife said the bills passed because there a compromise was found between lobbyist representing the "big three," -- major beer producers, distributors and retailers and representatives for burgeoning beer microbrewers around the state.

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