OLYMPIA, Wash. -- Washington senators are moving ahead with a proposal that would allow older teens to taste alcohol in college classes.
The proposal will benefit students enrolled in culinary, wine and beer programs at community or technical colleges.
The bill would create a special permit to allow students age 18 and older and enrolled in culinary, wine and beer programs to taste, but not consume alcohol.
The students must also be supervised by faculty or staff.
Supporters say the proposal would improve educational programs for students and help them learn about an important industry. Democratic Sen. Jim Hargrove of Hoquiam opposed the measure, saying he fears that the bill is the first of many that would lower drinking ages and expand access to alcohol. The measure now goes to the state House.