An alliance this year between liquor and grocery stores could give the legislature the cover it needs to legalize Sunday alcohol sales, but reject any expansion of cold beer sales. And lawmakers say that alliance boosts chances for Sunday sales passage like never before.
The tug-of-war between grocery and liquor stores goes back decades – and lawmakers say those two lobbies have largely killed Sunday alcohol sales bills during that time. So Senate Public Policy Committee Chair Ron Alting (R-Lafayette) says the recent alliance between the two groups is a game changer.
“It’s a heck of an accomplishment for those two entities to come together for good public policy and say, ‘OK, you know, we’re in favor of something,’” Alting says.
House Speaker Brian Bosma (R-Indianapolis) brushes aside concerns that if the legislature finally passes Sunday sales – while rejecting cold beer expansion – it will look like lawmakers only did it because the groups told them to.
“Oh, we don’t worry about those things. We do what’s right, let the politics shake out for itself,” Bosma says.
A special alcohol study commission also made similar recommendations to legislative leaders earlier this year.