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Offline Bayou-Ruler  
#181 Posted : Monday, June 23, 2014 6:49:14 AM(UTC)
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No big deal, I got a letter too....
Bayou Ethanol
AFP-LA-15027
www.bayouethanol.com
Offline old stump juicer  
#182 Posted : Monday, June 23, 2014 7:55:30 AM(UTC)
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We may just be the latest group to fall in disfavor and become worthy of some high level harassment. Kinda like the Tea Party groups that were attacked by the IRS!
Offline RCRed  
#183 Posted : Monday, June 23, 2014 7:57:49 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: old stump juicer Go to Quoted Post
We may just be the latest group to fall in disfavor and become worthy of some high level harassment. Kinda like the Tea Party groups that were attacked by the IRS!
I'd believe that with as much flack as I launch towards my congressmen and senators...
Offline rasher  
#184 Posted : Monday, June 23, 2014 8:39:23 AM(UTC)
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I got my letter in the mail today. I live in Missouri and distill for personal use in full compliance with MO state laws.
Can someone point me to some boilerplate "Decriminalize home distilling" text I can include in my letter to Congressman Emmanual Cleaver and Senator Claire McCaskill?
The letter looks to me like straight-up federal harrassment.
Offline admin  
#185 Posted : Monday, June 23, 2014 9:01:38 AM(UTC)
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Rasher- there is lots of information on the HDA website (www.hobbydistillersassociation.org (http://www.hobbydistillersassociation.org)), including a downloadable packet that you can send into your Senators and Representative. You can also point them to the HDA's lobbyist- Lobbyit.com, to help further this.

I have also composed what is meant to be an article for newspapers, etc., but a couple of people in the HDA thought that it may be a good letter for forward to our representatives in Congress. I am just waiting for confirmation from the lobbyist that it will not interfere or diminish anything that they are working on, but once they have confirmed that we will make it available for download on the HDA website, as well.

The two most important things that you can do about this are to contact your federal representatives, and to join the HDA (and get everyone that you know to do the same). I realize that we may sound like a broken record on the HDA, but every name added to our list of supporters helps further the cause, even if it is just signing up with the free account. We are making headway, but we are starting to get Senators asking about the level of support in their state. They are not even asking to see the list- just the number of supporters. So, let's get those numbers as high as we can while our representatives are listening!

Rick
Offline BigMo  
#186 Posted : Monday, June 23, 2014 9:04:27 AM(UTC)
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I live in Texas and I also got one of those letters. It stated "you may have" material and the stuff to distill. Sounds like they
are guessing and hoping. I did purchase a boiler about three years ago for making beer but loaned it out for a crab boil
and it never made it home. The strange part of this is that they are spending a bunch of money to mess with a few hobbiest
and when i was living in my home state of Kentucky i could find people selling shine about anywhere I went. Seems they were
not too serious about catching the Big Boys.
Offline smurray316  
#187 Posted : Tuesday, June 24, 2014 12:44:44 AM(UTC)
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I got my letter last night, looks like its time to get rid of the tower...... I'm pretty disappointed by this but I am part of the HDA and looks like I need to start sending letters to my reps. Has anyone in NC had any problems or have any suggestions as to the best person/people to be contacting? Hopefully one day soon it will be legal and I can make some liquor for me and my family!
Offline admin  
#188 Posted : Tuesday, June 24, 2014 1:20:00 AM(UTC)
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You can find your Senators at http://www.senate.gov/ge...mation/senators_cfm.cfm, and your Representative at http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/. I would also suggest contacting your state representatives, as the law will need to be changed both federally and in each state.
Offline kane  
#189 Posted : Tuesday, June 24, 2014 2:45:48 AM(UTC)
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i got my letter as well yesterday in fl
i have nothing assembled but i have a small 5 gallon barrel aging
what should i do ?
Offline dieselduo  
#190 Posted : Tuesday, June 24, 2014 3:28:04 AM(UTC)
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I don't think being unassembled makes any difference. I was wondering if you get rid of the column would that be safe
Offline RCRed  
#191 Posted : Tuesday, June 24, 2014 3:30:49 AM(UTC)
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The statue reads that way, Diesel. Assembled over or connected to a heat source. I'm at work now, so I'll find you the portion of the law later. Or you can look it up...
Offline dieselduo  
#192 Posted : Tuesday, June 24, 2014 3:50:21 AM(UTC)
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I heard that one guy got his still confiscated and it was still in the box.
Originally Posted by: RCRed Go to Quoted Post
The statue reads that way, Diesel. Assembled over or connected to a heat source. I'm at work now, so I'll find you the portion of the law later. Or you can look it up...
Offline admin  
#193 Posted : Tuesday, June 24, 2014 3:59:10 AM(UTC)
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We have a customer who told us that their unit was still in the box- never opened. However, FL law may require registration on ownership, not setup, I am not sure. Also, I do not believe that they were asked if the still was "set up", so if they handed it over nicely then it was probably better for them in the end.
Offline kane  
#194 Posted : Tuesday, June 24, 2014 4:02:40 AM(UTC)
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did anyone, that had there still confiscated get arrested for having it
seeing in Florida for what ever reason that gives them the right to violate our rights as a citizen to own a still , specially sense we deal with hurricanes
let alone several states like Mo where the hobbyist is aloud to make alcohol for personal use ( i think i read 250 gallons )
Offline dieselduo  
#195 Posted : Tuesday, June 24, 2014 4:03:24 AM(UTC)
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So do you think if you got rid of just the column you would be safe ?
Offline smurray316  
#196 Posted : Tuesday, June 24, 2014 4:26:50 AM(UTC)
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The way im looking at it is the column is what makes the alcohol so yes, I do beleive that if I dont have it anymore then all im left with is my kettle (which to use for boiled peanuts idea sounds great), fermintation buckets, and some coper and nothing that could be used to make any kind of strong alcohol. I could be wrong but I'm not 100% sure. I do have family in law enforcement in Florida, they will be talking to a family friend in the ATF to see what I should do. For now I have the forms printed off of HDA and will be mailing those out shortly.
Offline RCRed  
#197 Posted : Tuesday, June 24, 2014 4:50:49 AM(UTC)
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I just got off the phone with the TTB. I was told they did not cross reference against any registrations, and that my APF was in good standing and simply show my permit to any agent who might happen by and ask.

I know I saw that clause in the Law when we were reviewing changes for the legislation as part of the HDA build up... I just have to find it for you. I'll find her eventual, Diesel... just today's busy with a kajillion calls and meetings...But do keep in mind that the State you live in may have additional sanctions - like Florida. From above, it's clear you have to have a permit to even HAVE the unit.
Offline Alli  
#198 Posted : Tuesday, June 24, 2014 5:15:30 AM(UTC)
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"Why don't we turn the letters against them? Copy the letter and send it to your Congressman and Senators. Ask why federal funding is being cut to the states that resulted in school teacher layoffs and cut funding to infrastructure projects and the TTB is spending money to send out letters to individuals who they say
""may"" have purchased a small still and you consider these poorly written letters a threat. Every congressional website I have visited has a link to ""Problems with a Federal Agency"". They will most likely forward your letter to the TTB for a response. Do not admit that you actually have a still. Disassemble your still and cover it up/ put it out of site when not in use. If they can't see it, it does not exist and they can't search your house/garage without a warrant.

Next, do as they ask in the letter, apply for a permit. The only one available to homeowners is the AFP (Alcohol Fuel Plant) permit. Go to TTB applications online and follow the directions. The permit costs nothing, it is fairly long, but you are giving up no more information than they already have. What this will do is get your still registered and they will have no right to confiscate it unless you are caught selling (or drinking) the alcohol fuel produced. You do have to send in a report in January every year telling them how many gallons of fuel you produced and the date it was produced - of course no one but you knows that information. This registration of your still protects you from the laws concerning an unregistered still that ""could"" cost up the $10,000 and 5 years in jail. Obviously these maximum penalties are designed for the hard core moonshiner selling thousands of gallons on untaxed alcohol. If you chose to fill out the AFP application and have any questions, call the TTB. They will be happy to assist you. I'm serious- they are a really nice group in the Cincinnati office. Or email me, I will be glad to help if I can.

If you live in a state like Florida that has laws against possessing a still and you have a federal AFP permit, you are pitting the state and federal laws against each other. Kind of like the Colorado pot laws only in reverse. Federal law ""should"" prevail. Maybe not but the states are so strapped for cash, it is unlikely they will come after anyone on their own for simply possessing a still.

As Red said, the law says a still is not set up unless it is in position over a furnace or other heat source (see below section 29.55 below)

Diesel - to answer your question above, if the boiler and the tower are not attached or over a heat source and not even in the same area of the dwelling, by law the still does not meet the definition of being set up. This could get technical and an ambitious TTB agent could twist the law to suit his needs, but he would have to search your house to find it.


29.55 Registry of stills and distilling apparatus.
(a) General. Every person having possession, custody, or control of any still or distilling apparatus set up shall, immediately on its being set up, register the still or distilling apparatus, except that a still or distilling apparatus not used or intended for use in the distillation, redistillation, or recovery of distilled spirits is not required to be registered. Registration may be accomplished by describing the still or distilling apparatus on the registration or permit application prescribed in this chapter for qualification under 26 U.S.C. chapter 51 or, if qualification is not required under 26 U.S.C. chapter 51, on a letter application, and filing the application with the appropriate TTB officer. Approval of the application by the appropriate TTB officer will constitute registration of the still or distilling apparatus.
(b) When still is set up. A still will be regarded as set up and subject to registry when it is in position over a furnace, or connected with a boiler so that heat may be applied, irrespective of whether a condenser is in position. This rule is intended merely as an illustration and should not be construed as covering all types of stills or condensers requiring registration.


Tom
Hobby Distiller's Association"
Offline heeler  
#199 Posted : Tuesday, June 24, 2014 12:29:25 PM(UTC)
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When this info gets out about Fl and. just owning a still I hope Admin will advise anyone from my state (Fl) about this before he takes the order and money! I understand how business goes buuuuuut.......
Offline zoggins  
#200 Posted : Tuesday, June 24, 2014 3:03:23 PM(UTC)
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What are building/land requirements for getting an AFP?
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