Minors attempting to buy alcohol in Wisconsin could face a steep - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Minors attempting to buy alcohol in Wisconsin could face a steep penalty

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Minors who try to buy alcohol in Wisconsin could pay a hefty price, paid directly to the business.

The Brown Jug Bill would allow anyone with a liquor license to bring civil lawsuits against minors.  If they lose, the minor or their parents would have to pay the business $1,000.  A bar owner we spoke with supports the bill because the costs associated with checking ID's have increased.

"It would definitely deter some of the costs. Having that extra person or two on during the week to make sure everybody's of age coming into the establishment," Brad Windeshausen says, the owner of Whiskey's in Altoona.

The legislation is modeled after a similar bill in Alaska, with a slight difference. In Alaska, the money is split three ways but none of it goes to the business. Those opposed to the Wisconsin bill say bar owners are set to gain too much financially.

"The brown jug bill is disproportionately punishing students and minors for the behavior that happens. It is not taking into account that they're getting the alcohol from establishments who, in this bill, are being set up to benefit financially from that law-breaking," Jake Wrasse of the UW-Eau Claire Student Senate says.

Both the Senate and state Assembly approved the Brown Jug Bill.  It's now on its way to the Governor's desk.

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