State senate committee approves bill allowing Sunday carryout alcohol sales

Angelo Anderson
January 12, 2018

Two committees discussed separate bills allowing Sunday sales from noon to 8 groceries, package liquor stores and for other permit-holders that now sell alcohol.

Wednesday, key lawmakers met to talk Sunday sales in both the House and the Senate. A Senate committee will consider that bill next week.

In the Senate, the Public Policy Committee voted 9 - 0 in favor of passing SB 0001.

State Senator Ron Alting (R-Lafayette) said, "If you notice, there's no one fighting in the halls, there's no one fighting in here". Meeting during the summer, the commission recommended Sunday sales but not the expansion of cold beer sales.

Alting said, "I'm hoping we don't get bombarded down in second readings, and that's why I mentioned that. That's also been the death of these good bills like this". In recent years, the General Assembly has continued to move closer than ever on approving proposals to allow for Sunday sales, but bills have come up short. "The additional few hours are important to our customers".

As for any benefits to the retail council, Monahan pointed out that Sunday is the second busiest day of the week and that IN typically loses $12 million a year IN sales and excise taxes as residents drive across state lines on Sundays to shop for alcohol and other items.

But Indiana's Coalition to Reduce Underage Drinking wants strict amendments to both bills if they pass, such as in-store advertising separation.

Earlier in the day, the House Public Policy Committee took its first steps in this session's Sunday sales debate.

"Whenever you expand alcohol sales, you're gonna have problems", Smaltz says.

"It's unanimous that it's simply the time to do a Sunday sales bill", said Sen.

For the latest breaking news and stories from across the Tri-State, follow Eyewitness News on Facebook and Twitter. The state now limits carryout sales of cold beer to liquor stores and some restaurants.

That measure would allow convenience stores, big box retailers and pharmacies to sell cold - and not just warm - beer. Sunday sales, he believes, stand "a pretty decent chance" of gaining legislative approval. "We appreciate how times change and how legislative priorities may change over time, we felt that, we felt and still feel today that the um the um coming together with the liquor stores was the right thing to do for both sides".

The committee's approval signals a step forward in repealing the state's post-Prohibition era laws.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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