D.C. Council Inching Closer to Sunday Liquor Sales

But some liquor store owners don't want to work on Sundays

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Sunday liquor sales could soon be coming to the District.

    D.C. Councilmember Jim Graham is planning to introduce new legislation that could allow stores to sell liquor on Sunday.

    Right now, D.C. residents have to head to Maryland or Virginia to buy liquor on Sundays.

    Graham has wavered on whether Sunday liquor sales should be allowed in the District. In April, he suggested he'd support package sales, but reversed that position shortly after.

    "I had only suggested this as a possibility in terms of gathering monies necessary to help avoid the extended bar hours," Graham said at a budget hearing. "Since we are not able to really resolve that with these Sunday hours, I have no intention of supporting Sunday liquor sales.”

    Graham instead recommended an increased excise tax on liquor served at restaurants and bars, but the proposal hasn't picked up much support.

    The Sunday package sale proposal may run into some unexpected trouble, however. Some liquor store owners say changing the current law would mean big box stores could become a one-stop shop for food and alcohol, and trying to compete would be too difficult.

    "It'd be a hardship for us," Rick Genderson, owner of Schneider's of Capitol Hill, told DCist. "I work six days a week. I don't want to work seven."

    Alcohol regulators say allowing liquor sales would bring in an extra $710,000 in tax revenue.