INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana's ban on Sunday retail alcohol
sales will likely continue for at least another year after a legislative
committee leader said Wednesday he didn't plan on holding a vote on a bill
lifting the prohibition.
to end the ban have been filed by legislators for the past several years,
but a House Public Policy Committee hearing last week marked the first
time lawmakers had taken up the proposal.
Chairman Bill Davis, R-Portland, said the hearing gave both sides a chance
to make their arguments, but that he heard nothing new to change his
position against lifting the Sunday sales ban.
Tuesday is the
House deadline for bills to be approved by a committee, and Davis said he
didn't plan on having another committee meeting before then.
"We've got a
number of issues sitting on the docket that we're not going to hear — it's
not just this bill," Davis said. "I didn't see any compelling reason to
have another hearing."
Indiana is the
only state that prohibits retail carryout sales of beer, wine and liquor
on Sundays, according to the Distilled Spirits Council of the United
States. Indiana is among 12 states with limits on Sunday sales of liquor.
owners oppose lifting the Sunday ban, arguing the change would benefit
large chain grocery and convenience stores that don't face age
restrictions on who can enter and don't have the same requirement of
hiring clerks with state liquor licenses.
allowing Sunday sales said it would be more convenient for customers and
would eliminate an outdated law.
Eberhart, R-Shelbyville, said he sponsored the bill ending the Sunday
sales ban because he thought it was inconsistent with state laws allowing
alcohol sales at restaurants, bars, concerts and sporting events.
"I think it's
an issue I think needs to come out of committee, that needs to have a
debate on the House floor for all of us to decide what's good public
policy for the state," Eberhart said.
Davis said it
was unlikely that the proposal would be revived later in the legislative
session that is scheduled to end in late April.
ending the ban will continue their efforts, Indiana Retail Council
President Grant Monahan said.
"We are very
disappointed that chairman Davis has apparently refused to listen to
Hoosiers who want greater shopping convenience, expanded buying choices
and more competitive pricing," Monahan said in an email comment.