Sunday alcohol bill dies in Indiana Statehouse

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A bill to allow Sunday carryout sales of alcohol in Indiana is dead. Indiana House Public Policy Committee chairman Bill Davis (R-Portland) denied a vote on House Bill 1146, which would have allowed Sunday carryout sales of alcohol in convenience, grocery, drug and liquor stores.

For now, it means that Indiana will continue to have the strictest laws in the nation concerning alcohol sales.

The debate has been raging in Indiana for decades. Liquor store owners have fought against Sunday sales, arguing that they can't compete against big box retailers. Breweries and wineries are allowed to sell alcohol from their premises on Sundays.

Liquor store owners have waged a robust fight against competition since prohibition ended. In 1954, drugstores were allowed to sell liquor. In 1984, the owners of Kocolene Convenience stores sued to sell beer. Now grocery stores and drug stores, gas stations and convenience stores all sell beer, wine and or liquor, but not cold beer. That is exclusive territory of package liquor stores.

Text of House Bill 1146:

Sunday sales of alcoholic beverages for carryout. Provides that a holder of an alcoholic beverage permit who is authorized by law to sell alcoholic beverages for carryout may sell carryout on Sunday.