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TTB NEWSLETTER | Weekly News

April 13, 2018


IN THIS ISSUE

Greetings! This week's top news includes the proposal of the Upper Hudson AVA, a vacancy announcement for three auditor positions in Cincinnati, Ohio, administrative approval of the Mencia grape variety, and recent indictments stemming from a TTB criminal investigation.

TTB PROPOSES ESTABLISHMENT OF THE "UPPER HUDSON" AMERICAN VITICULTURAL AREA

We are accepting comments through June 8, 2018, on Notice No. 174, Proposed Establishment of the Upper Hudson Viticultural Area, which was published in the Federal Register on Monday, April 9, 2018. This approximately 1,500-square mile viticultural area is located in portions of Albany, Montgomery, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, and Washington Counties in New York. The proposed viticultural area is not located within, and does not contain, any established viticultural area.

We are making this proposal in response to a petition filed by a local wine industry member on behalf of local vineyard and winery owners. We designate viticultural areas to allow vintners to better describe the origin of their wines and to allow consumers to better identify wines they may purchase.

You may view all documents and comments related to this proposal within Docket No. TTB–2018–0005 at Regulations.gov. A link to that docket is posted on our Wine – Notices of Proposed Rulemaking page at TTB.gov under Notice No. 174. To comment electronically, use the Regulations.gov comment form for Notice No. 174. To submit comments by postal mail or hand delivery, see the instructions in the notice.

Read the TTB press release.

TTB IS LOOKING FOR CANDIDATES TO FILL THREE AUDITOR POSITIONS IN CINCINNATI, OHIO

TTB is recognized as one of the federal government's best places to work. We ranked #4 of 339 in the Partnership for Public Service's 2017 Best Places to Work in the Federal Government ratings (Agency Subcomponents category). If you're interested in working for TTB, consider applying on or before April 20, 2018, for one of three auditor positions.
TTB Auditors are responsible for performing excise tax audits at alcohol, tobacco, firearms and ammunition industry members, as well as other related activities. This position may be 100 percent telework. The selectees MUST reside within a 200 mile radius of the Cincinnati, Ohio local commuting area.

For more details view the vacancy announcement: 18-TTB-41-P.

MENCIA GRAPE VARIETY APPROVED FOR DESIGNATING AMERICAN WINE

We recently granted administrative approval for the use of the Mencia grape variety on American wine labels. Wine bottlers may use this name, as well as others granted administrative approval, to label American wines pending the results of our next rulemaking to revise the list (found in 27 CFR 4.91) of grape variety names approved for use in designating American wines.

Visit our American Grape Variety Names page at TTB.gov for additional information about the regulation of grape variety names.

THREE INDIVIDUALS INDICTED FOR BRIBING NAVAL EMPLOYEE TO ALLOW THEM TO MAKE UNAUTHORIZED LIQUOR PURCHASES

On Tuesday, April 10, 2018, Adam Agaev, 43, and David Manasherov, 37, both of Brooklyn, New York, and Edwin D. Fragoso, 44, of Freeport, New York, were indicted for providing cash bribes to an employee of the U.S. Department of the Navy. The indictments followed a criminal investigation in which TTB was a participant.

Agaev and Manasherov allegedly purchased liquor worth over $5 million, and Fragoso purchased over $1.3 million of liquor, over the course of the scheme. In addition to bribery, the defendants were also charged with conspiracy to defraud the United States, wire fraud, and honest services fraud. Manasherov was charged with tampering with an official proceeding and destruction of evidence subject to a federal search warrant. Fragoso was charged with making false statements to law enforcement agents.

A copy of the press release may be found at the United States Department of Justice website.

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