The federal government has reopened and that means the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) is back to work. The government shutdown was not kind to brewers looking to get a new brand (or entire company) to market. Some applications that would have been approved were automatically rejected. According to the TTB, those issues should have been addressed and everything should now be back to normal.
“We are actively working to address issues that arose from the shutdown as well as the processing delays that impede your operations and hinder economic activity,” the TTB’s latest newsletter stated. “We took immediate steps to resolve the applications that were automatically rejected by COLAs Online and Formulas Online during the shutdown, recovering expired applications and issuing guidance to industry. We also cleared all pending export certificate applications and sample import waiver requests that delayed trade activity during the shutdown. Lastly, we have temporarily redirected staff and authorized additional overtime to process the anticipated increase in label, formula, and permit applications in the coming weeks as we resume normal operations.
The TTB offices have re-opened and are providing their full services. The TTB website, TTB.gov, is back to normal operations, including the COLA Public Registry, and all of the TTB online e-filing systems are back up: COLAs Online; Formulas Online; and Permits Online.
The organization also provided advice to industry members looking to make this re-open process as smooth as possible:
Use our TTBOnline e-filing systems, COLAs Online, Formulas Online, and Permits Online, to expedite processing of your applications. (Read Impacts of Government Shutdown on TTB Online Systems-What You Need to Know for more information about how the government shutdown may have affected your Formulas Online submissionsand COLAs Online applications.)
Use TTB.gov, when possible, to check the status of any pending applications to minimize calls to our application processing offices, particularly status calls. Some offices may not be able to return calls requesting the status of applications.
Take full advantage of TTB policies and regulations that allow you make certain changes without TTB approval or notification, including our allowable revisions/changes to approved labels.
Double-check your applications. Error-free applications minimize the likelihood of corrections and rejections.