On the Seventh Day, open the liquor stores | AspenTimes.com

On the Seventh Day, open the liquor stores

We think it’s a good thing that Colorado lawmakers plan to take another stab at allowing liquor stores to open on Sundays.

During the next legislative session, state leaders are expected to craft a bill that would lift the ban on Sunday liquor sales. The last time lawmakers tried this was in 2005, and it failed.

As in 2005, liquor store operators say they’re against liquor reform because it means they’d be open seven days a week. They prefer the Seventh Day to be their day of rest, many operators say. They also reason that their sales wouldn’t go up, but we’re not so sure. The Washington, D.C.-based Distilled Spirits Council says retailers in other states have experienced a 9 percent average increase in sales when they’ve been allowed to sell on Sundays. (See letter, page A12.)

We have to side with the consumer on this one. Anything that benefits the consumer is at least worth considering, and we’d guess that allowing liquor stores to operate on Sundays does just that.

Sunday liquor store sales make even more sense for Aspen and other resort towns. Many visitors arrive here on Saturdays, only to learn that they can’t buy booze on Sundays in what’s supposed to be a progressive town, all because of an outdated law, which currently is in place in 16 states.

Also, liquor store owners should be mindful that in resort towns such as Aspen, many other businesses are open seven days a week, from hotels to restaurants to ski shops to gas stations to clothing stores. Why should liquor stores get a pass when other retailers stay open seven days a week to support the tourist economy?

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Sunday liquor store sales is an idea whose time has finally come. The ban simply is outdated and has run its course.

We hope our legislators agree.