Sunday sales amendment fails in Minnesota House

Legislators show strong support for current smart and balanced alcohol regulations and “Mom & Pop” small businesses

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 12, 2016

CONTACT: Leslie Rosedahl, 651-353-1818, [email protected] on behalf of the Minnesota Licensed Beverage Association, Minnesota Municipal Beverage Association, Minnesota Beer Wholesalers Association, and Teamsters Joint Council 32.

(ST. PAUL, MINN.) – Today (May 12, 2016), a bipartisan majority in the Minnesota House of Representatives voted to support Minnesota’s small, local businesses and current smart and balanced alcohol regulations by voting against a proposed Sunday sales amendment.

The Sunday sales amendment was moved on the House floor by Rep. Jenifer Loon (R-Eden Prairie) to permit the sale (off-sale) of alcohol in liquor stores on Sundays and for the state to restrict the wholesale distribution of alcohol on Sundays. The Sunday sales amendment failed by a vote of 56  to 70. The amendment was offered to a local government licensing bill, House File 3699, authored by Rep. Joe Hoppe (R-Chaska).

There is no Senate companion bill to House File 3699, and the issue of Sunday sales was not voted on by the House or Senate Commerce Committees this year or last year.

Jennifer Schoenzeit, president of the Minnesota Licensed Beverage Association, said, “Today legislators voted to support small, local businesses as well as Minnesota’s current smart and balanced alcohol regulations. Weakening our alcohol laws to allow liquor stores to open on any day of the year sounds simple on the surface, but it’s not. There would be an enormous negative impact – including higher prices for liquor stores and consumers – to both the bar and liquor store industries.”

 PREVIOUS VOTES BY THE MINNESOTA LEGISLATURE ON SUNDAY SALES

  • On April 28, 2015, Sunday sales failed in the Minnesota House of Representatives in two separateamendment votes. An amendment by Rep. Jenifer Loon (R-Eden Prairie) allowing municipalities to permit the off-sale of alcohol on Sundays and prohibit Sunday distributor deliveries failed on a vote of 57 to 75. A similar second amendment allowing municipalities to permit the off-sale of alcohol on Sundays (with no distributor delivery prohibition) offered by Steve Drazkowski (R-Mazeppa) also failed by a vote of 48 to 84.
  • On April16, 2015, Sunday sales failed in the Minnesota Senate by a bipartisan vote of 28 to 35.
  • On May 6, 2014, Sunday sales failed in the Minnesota Senate by a vote of 22 to 42.
  • On May 1, 2013, Sunday sales failed in the Minnesota House of Representatives by a vote of 21 to 106.

 

ORGANIZATIONS OPPOSING SUNDAY SALES

Several statewide organizations, representing small businesses and employees, support our current smart and balanced alcohol regulations and the three tier system, and oppose Sunday alcohol sales.

  • The Minnesota Licensed Beverage Association (MLBA), representing Minnesota’s mostly small, family-owned liquor retailers, opposes Sunday alcohol sales.
  • The Minnesota Municipal Beverage Association (MMBA), representing 250 municipally owned and operated on-sale and off-sale alcohol beverage facilities, opposes Sunday alcohol sales.
  • The Minnesota Beer Wholesalers Association (MBWA), representing Minnesota’s family-owned distributors, opposes Sunday sales.
  • The Teamsters Joint Council 32, representing employees throughout Minnesota liquor industry in manufacturing, transportation, warehousing, distribution, and retailing positions, opposes Sunday alcohol sales.

 

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The SMART campaign is a public education and advocacy effort in support of Minnesota’s current alcohol laws and regulations. SMART stands for Supporting Minnesota’s Alcohol Regulations and Traditions and is made up of individuals, concerned citizens, and hundreds of small business owners and employees around the state. The SMART campaign is supported by the Minnesota Licensed Beverage Association, the Minnesota Beer Wholesalers Association, the Minnesota Municipal Beverage Association, and the Teamsters Joint Council 32. More information is available at www.mnSMART.org.