By Margaret Mitschke*
This blog is part of our 60 Laws in 60 Minutes update to the SHSU community.
During the 84th session of the Texas Legislature, Senate Bill 1651 was passed. This bill relates to the employment of a person under 18 years old on the premises of certain businesses selling or serving alcoholic beverages. This bill went into effect immediately after being passed.
SB 1651 was written because of the changes in licenses that grocery stores must hold to sell alcohol. Previously, grocery stores held licenses from the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission that were for off-premise alcohol consumption. Since the permits were solely for off-premise consumption, grocery store cashiers could be age 16 and older. However, because additional services that a grocery store may offer, including the service of beer and wine with food for on-premise consumption, grocery stores must hold a on/off-premises consumption license. This meant that grocery cashiers would have to be 18 years or older.
This bill allows 16 and 17 year olds to work as grocery cashiers in grocery stores that hold the on/off-premise license. However, while the grocery store may employ someone under the age of 18 to work as a cashier for transactions involving the sale of alcoholic beverages, the beverages themselves must be served by someone 18 years or older.