Salt Lake City, UT – Utah is one step closer to modernizing its liquor laws after a major Senate committee favorably passed a bill easing an archaic ban on Election Day alcohol sales yesterday, according to the Distilled Spirits Council.

Current Utah law prohibits all alcohol sales throughout the state during statewide general elections, primaries or special elections.  Senate Bill 167, sponsored by Sen. Scott McCoy, would allow restaurants and bars to serve alcohol on Election Day, and package stores to sell alcohol after polls close.  The bill has moved to the full Senate for consideration.

“Prohibition-era laws make absolutely no sense in a modern economy,” said David Wojnar, Vice President of the Distilled Spirits Council.   “Eliminating this prohibition on Election Day sales is a step toward modernizing Utah’s spirits market and will bring consumers greater convenience.”

Wojnar pointed out that Election Day bans are confusing to consumers and create scheduling hassles for businesses.

“With the 75th anniversary of Prohibition repeal coming, it is important that we eliminate outdated and inefficient blue laws and regulations,” Wojnar said.  “Election Day sales bans do a disservice to consumers and deprive states of important retail sales and tax revenue.  With businesses facing increased operating costs and the downturn of the national economy, Utah cannot afford to lose retail sales and tax revenue.”