(by Shanken News Daily) Less than a week after clearing Connecticut’s House of Representatives, a Sunday alcohol sales initiative yesterday passed the state’s Senate in a 28-6 vote. The bill now goes to Governor Dannel Malloy, who is expected to sign it. Sunday sales will be allowed from 10 a.m to 5 p.m., effective immediately. The bill also allows alcohol sales on Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Labor Day.
The legislation is a scaled-down version of the proposal unveiled by Malloy in January, which called for sweeping deregulation of the liquor business. Malloy sought the elimination of minimum pricing requirements and an increase in the number of permitted licenses per retailer from two to nine. The final bill does not address the minimum pricing issue, and it raises the number of permitted licenses per retailer to just three. The legislators agreed to form a bipartisan task force to study issues including volume discounts, taxation and minimum pricing, and their report will be completed on January 1, 2013.
Legislative analysts are projecting that Sunday sales will generate $5.2 million in new tax revenue for Connecticut, although some lawmakers dispute that figure. Once Connecticut’s governor signs the bill, Indiana will be the last remaining state to have a total ban on Sunday alcohol sales.