One of the last blue law holdouts, Connecticut has become the 49th state to allow off-premises Sunday alcohol sales. Liquor stores and grocers can sell beer, wine and spirits seven days a week.
Resulting sales are expected to bring about $5.2 million a year into state coffers -- money that was instead being collected by neighboring states. For years, consumers fled to Massachusetts, New York and Rhode Island in search of Sunday alcohol and cheaper prices, according to Governor Dannel Malloy. He hopes that the changes will encourage residents to make local purchases.
Some aren't so sure this will be the case. For years, the Connecticut Package Stores Association has claimed that Sunday alcohol sales would put small stores out of business, explains the Associated Press. The costs associated with hiring additional staff would be too much. However, the group dropped opposition to the plan earlier this year.
Hopefully, a number of changes accompanying Connecticut's new Sunday alcohol rules will ensure that this does not happen. Retail sales will be allowed between 10 am and 5 pm on Sunday, according to the Associated Press. Liquor stores will also be able to sell other items used to prepare drinks, like fresh fruits and olives. They'll also be able to sell snacks like cheese and crackers, reports NBC.
Moreover, alcohol sales permit holders will now be able to own three package stores instead of two.
Now, back to the more pressing question -- which state doesn't permit off-premises Sunday alcohol sales? Surprisingly, it's Indiana. Despite Utah's strict liquor laws, consumers can buy 3.2% beer from grocery and convenience stores on Sunday.
Surprisingly, it is Indiana, not Utah, that remains the only state with a full ban on off-premises Sunday sales.
- Sunday Sales Are Good, But What About High Liquor Prices? (Hartford Courant)
- Utah Liquor Laws Makes Life Hard for Business (FindLaw's Free Enterprise)
- Enjoy Alcohol? It May Soon Be a Job Requirement in Utah (FindLaw's Legal Grounds)