Lawmaker from Houston area wants to OK sale of liquor on Sundays

January 15, 2013 3:00:37 PM PST
Many say Sundays are for rest, for family, for church -- but if one state lawmaker gets her way, something could be changing on Sundays. Liquor stores may be open for business.

On a Tuesday afternoon you can find liquor, beer or wine at any liquor store in town. But they're all closed on Sundays.

Customer R.C. Carmichael said, "It's a free country and capitalism is what you're allowed to do, so why not be able to serve it?"

"Bars are open on Sundays," said one woman. "I don't see why it makes a difference."

Another customer asked, "If you can buy liquor, beer, and wine Monday through Saturday, what's the difference with Sunday?"

State representative Senfronia Thompson agrees. She's sponsoring a bill that would allow stores to sell liquor on Sundays after noon. Grocery and convenience stores are already allowed to sell beer and wine after noon.

"It's two issues. It's an economic issue and there's also a convenience issue. And we are catching up in times," Thompson said. "We've seen there's been an increase in revenue and particularly, in the tax revenue."

She estimates the state would make $8 to $13 million in liquor sales.

Hermen Key with Spec's Liquor said, "We're really adamantly against this."

You might be surprised by who opposes the bill. Key is a spokesperson for Spec's Liquor, and he also represents the Texas Package Association.

"We're a family company," Key said. "Over half of the liquor stores in Texas are owned by single operators, so it would affect their only day off."

Plus, he doesn't think liquor stores will make more money on Sundays.

"We don't have any demand from our customers to be open on Sundays," Key said. "It would just be spreading our sales over seven days instead of six, thus increasing our overhead and our time and our labor."
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