Convenience store owners close in on full-strength beer

DENVER — A bill to allow convenience stores to sell full-strength beer cleared a House committee late Wednesday.

House Bill 1186 is designed to help convenience stores get back some of the market they lost when the state allowed Sunday sales of alcohol, said the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Larry Liston, R-Colorado Springs.

But liquor store owners argued that doing so would eat too much into their business.

Brandi Pollock-Fisher, owner of Fisher’s Liquor Barn in Grand Junction, told the House Business Affairs & Labor Committee it would jeopardize thousands of jobs.

“This bill is not a reaction to Sunday sales,” she said. “The truth is the grocery stores and C-stores were floating this concept legislation a year before Sunday sales was introduced.”

Regardless, the committee approved the measure 7-4 after hearing nearly six hours of witness testimony.

The bill, which was limited to allowing sales during the same hours that liquor stores can operate, heads to the House Finance Committee for more debate.


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