(STATEHOUSE) - It appears beer and wine will return to the Indiana State Fair this year after 67 years.
The alcohol ban at the state fair has lasted 53 years longer than Prohibition, but the House voted 75-20 to repeal the ban. All that's left is for Governor Pence to sign or veto the bill.
Indianapolis Senator Jim Merritt, the bill's author, expects it to become law. He notes Pence chief of staff Bill Smith serves on the Indiana State Fair Commission, and says there's been no indication the governor opposes the change.
Merritt also serves on that commission. He anticipates the panel will begin planning the details as soon as the bill is signed.
Fair officials have said they envision a single beer and wine garden with Indiana craft beers and wine from Hoosier wineries.
Merritt says it's likely the fair will take things slow at first, with a tasting sampler of wines rather than a full glass.
Carmel Republican Jerry Torr, who sponsored the bill in the House, says North Carolina now allows limited alcohol service, making Indiana the last dry state fair in the U.S.
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