SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — By the end of the summer, all California liquor servers and their managers must complete mandatory training and hold a valid Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control responsible beverage service certification.
The law, which takes effect July 1, gives servers and their managers 60 days to meet the requirements of Assembly Bills 1221 and 82. AB 1221. An alcoholic server is any person employed in an ABC-licensed on-premises establishment who is responsible for verifying identification, taking customer orders, and pouring or delivering alcoholic beverages.
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Training can be delivered online and there are nearly 50 approved training providers and that number is expected to grow, according to ABC spokesman John Carr.
New employees who meet the criteria would be required to complete the certification within 60 days of their first day on the job.
RBS training and certification is a three-step process:
- Register with ABC as a server on the RBS portal
- Take RBS training from an approved RBS training provider
- Return to the RBS portal to take the ABC Alcohol Server Certification Exam.
As of June 4, 58,000 people have accessed the RBS portal as part of the certification process. That number is expected to increase as the summer continues, according to Carr.
“We want to make sure that people have a good time, but also that people get home safely. it’s a difficult balance,” said Kent Souza, executive chef and general manager of 58 Degrees and Holding in Midtown Sacramento.
Souza said the training is positive for new hires who are just starting their careers in the restaurant and service industry.
“It’s a great opportunity to learn and recognize their role as bartender and server,” Souza said.
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Saturday evening behind the bar of 58 Degrees and Holding, Kurra Stenberg, the bartender, made a round of shots ordered by the guests.
Stenberg has been a bartender for five months and said the hardest part of her job is after customers have had several drinks.
“You have to keep track of how many drinks everyone has had, or the tolerance level of different peoples, if they were drinking before you got here, and how you keep track of that interaction throughout that here,” Stenburg said.
She said she bonds with everyone who sits at the bar, just as she would with a table she was serving in a restaurant, because it’s an important part of serving safely.
“It’s a very human interaction and you adapt to where each person is,” Stenberg said.
The training covers five areas the effects of alcohol on the body and the community, laws and regulations, intervention and good management policies.
It takes 3-4 hours for training and 2 hours for the exam i.e. open book and open note. ABC grades exams.
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ABC spokesman John Carr told CBS13 that ABC will work with businesses through the new requirements and is focused on an education-first approach.