DENVER, CO – Sunday alcohol sales supporters Representative Cheri Jahn and Senator Jennifer Veiga joined local retailers at Argonaut Wine & Liquor today to call on the full Colorado House of Representatives to pass historic Sunday sales legislation.
“For years I have heard from constituents that this law needs to change and this is the year we are going to do it” said Representative Cheri Jahn, the house sponsor of the legislation. “We have overwhelming support from consumers and retailers. It just makes sense, given our consumer-driven economy where the majority of households are comprised of dual-income workers prefer to shop on Sundays. It is my hope and my belief that the House will vote to change this outdated law.”
Colorado is one of only 16 states that still prohibit Sunday alcohol sales—”- a restriction imposed after the repeal of National Prohibition in the 1930s. Representative Jahn, Senator Veiga and local retailers in favor of Sunday openings called on the full House of Representatives to make Colorado the 35th state to allow Sunday openings, joining neighboring states, Arizona, Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico and Wyoming in allowing Sunday spirits sales.
“It’s time we got rid of Colorado’s archaic Blue Law banning Sunday alcohol sales,” said Senator Jennifer Veiga, sponsor of Senate Bill 82. “In states that have gone to Sunday sales, there has been a positive impact for both consumers and family-owned liquor stores of all sizes. The government should not be in the business of telling small store owners what days they can or can’t be open.”
Jim Dean, from Total Beverage Liquors and representing a coalition of Colorado’s 25 largest liquor retailers said, “Nearly the entire spirits industry in Colorado has come together for the first time in history to support this Sunday sales bill. The industry knows that this is the safe and responsible way to give consumers the convenience they want without causing small family-owned stores to go out of business like the legislation pushed by the grocery stores would have.”
Jeanne McEvoy, owner of Aspen Leaf Liquor in Loveland near Rocky Mountain National Park said: “It’s outrageous that a 1930s-era law has kept me from opening my doors on Sundays. Being so close to the mountains, our store is frequented by tourists baffled by this ridiculous law. It’s a major imposition for them and a huge money-loser for me.”
Distilled Spirits Council Vice President Dale Szyndrowski pointed out that twelve states since 2002 have passed laws allowing Sunday spirits sales.
“Nationally, states are overturning their old Blue Laws because consumers are demanding it,” he said. “This year marks the 75th anniversary of Prohibition Repeal. Sunday sales bans do a disservice to consumers and deprive states of much-needed retail sales and tax revenue.”