Providence, R.I., Feb. 5, 2003 – In testimony today before the Rhode Island House Corporations Committee, the Distilled Spirits Council urged legislators to pass a bill permitting sales of spirits on Sundays during the holiday season, stating it will result in “greater convenience for hectic holiday shoppers and more revenue for the state.” The legislation, HB 5212, would allow distilled spirits to be sold on all Sundays during the period from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day. Currently, spirits are only allowed for sale on Sundays before Christmas and New Year’s Day if those holidays fall on a Monday. “We shouldn’t let another holiday season pass with this costly and archaic inconvenience,” said David Wojnar, Distilled Spirits Council Eastern Region Vice President. “With so many dual income families today, Sunday has become the second busiest shopping day of the week. Rhode Island should be looking for ways to make it more convenient to shop within the state — not more difficult.” Many retailers say they are losing holiday sales and the state is losing much needed revenue to neighboring Massachusetts that permits statewide Sunday liquor sales during the holidays and year-round Sunday sales for retailers within 10 miles of the New Hampshire border. Wojnar pointed out that more and more states are re-examining the rationale behind outdated Sunday sales prohibitions. Last year, Pennsylvania and Oregon passed laws permitting Sunday sales of liquor, bringing the number of states that permit Sunday sales of liquor to 24. Other states, including New York, Delaware and Washington are also considering modernizing their Sunday sales laws. The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States is the national trade association representing producers and marketers of distilled spirits sold in the United States. Located in Washington, D.C., the Council is led by Dr. Peter H. Cressy, the former Chancellor of UMass Dartmouth.