On Friday, November 9, New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal announced that David P. Rible, New Jersey’s Director of the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control since only July 2017, will be leaving his post. The State’s official news release states that Director Rible is leaving to pursue other opportunities.
Director Rible, who was appointed by the prior administration, had issued the controversial Special Ruling setting forth the activities that craft breweries in New Jersey could and could not do. The Special Ruling was met with such significant resentment from New Jersey’s craft brewers, that it was suspended only one week after its publication. New Jersey’s legislators were quick to express their concern as well, leading to the introduction of a bill that would codify the “good,” and undo the “bad,” portions of the Special Ruling.
James B. Graziano, Esq., an attorney whose experience includes defending employment and product liability claims and serving as a municipal judge, will assume serve as the “Acting Director” until he can be confirmed by the State Senate. The change is effective November 26, 2018.
We hope that Acting Director Graziano will continue to work with craft breweries and maintain a dialogue with their owners so that a fair and balanced set of regulations are promulgated, which will allow New Jersey’s largest and smallest craft brewers to prosper.