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Sunday morning liquor sales could be allowed at stores and bars

  • / Updated:
  • Staff Report 

In an effort to modernize nearly 90-year-old alcohol laws in New York state, the Commission to Reform Alcoholic Beverage Control Law is set to release a report next week recommending several changes, including allowing liquor stores to open two hours earlier on Sundays. Currently, bars and restaurants can begin serving alcohol at 10 a.m. on Sundays, while liquor stores must wait until noon.

The commission, created as part of last year’s state budget, consists of 16 members who voted on a number of non-binding recommendations to be submitted to the state Legislature for review. Among the proposals is the repeal of a provision banning bars and restaurants within 200 feet of a school or church from obtaining a liquor license. The report also suggests clarifying language around the state Liquor Authority’s decision-making process for granting liquor store licenses.

Further recommendations include amending the law to limit the number of wine and liquor stores a single person can own, as well as removing the current prohibition that prevents establishments from replacing wine and spirits at liquor stores between deliveries. The proposed change would allow bars and restaurants to quickly restock in a limited fashion to avoid potential fines and penalties.

The commission also discussed proposals to allow grocery stores to sell wine and liquor, and to permit liquor stores to sell beer. The outcome of these discussions will be revealed in the report’s official release next week.