Kentucky Court Opinion and Judgment Posted

Sovos | December 27, 2006

The US District Court in Kentucky ruled yesterday on the lawsuit filed by Cherry Hill Vineyards, challenging provisions in Kentucky’s recent direct shipping legislation. Here are links to the court’s opinion [Huber Memorandum Opinion.pdf (324 KB)] and judgment [Huber Order and Judgment.pdf (239 KB)]. An excerpt from the opinion:

The court has evaluated the new statutory scheme put into place by SB 82. The new legislation has, for the most part, resolved the constitutional infirmities addressed by the Granholm decision. The court has rejected all challenges made by the plaintiffs but one. The court determined in the August, 2006 opinion and has reaffirmed herein that the in-person requirement in KRS 243.155 and 244.165 is unconstitutional as it discriminates in practical effect against out-of-state small farm wineries, and has not been shown to advance the legitimate local purposes asserted that cannot be adequately served by reasonable nondiscriminatory alternatives. For these reasons, the court will strike the in-person requirement from both statutes and uphold the remainder of the statutory scheme. A separate order will be entered this date in accordance with this opinion.

Update: Lexington Herald-Leader Article