Sunday Alcohol Sales Bill Fails Vote in House Committee

Dermody-197x300A bill designed to make legal the Sunday sales of alcohol for carry-out in Indiana has failed a committee vote.

The Public Policy Committee – which was overseeing the legislation – voted down the bill on an 8-5 vote. The language was authored by State Representative Tom Dermody of LaPorte.

He says this year’s approach to seeking the vote was a bit different.

“This year, we went with basically a straight up and down vote on Sunday sales and it did not pass,” says Dermody. “And again, that’s just an example that I knew there was a reason last year that we did it the way we did, because that’s what it was going to take to get it out of committee.”

Dermody attempted similar legislation during the long-session of the General Assembly, last year. The bill did not make it to the floor for a vote after a lack of support was cited.

This year’s version of the Sunday alcohol sales bill was put forward with the hope that the bill would make it to the House floor for a vote. Dermody says the biggest change would not have required certain retail alcohol providers to put liquor behind the counters for sale on Sunday. The maneuver was previously described as incurring too much cost on the businesses seeking to take advantage of alcohol sales on Sunday.

Dermody says package liquor stores and other trade organizations had influence on the discussion.

“The package liquor stores, when they work with their members, clearly by the vote today, they have a strong presence individually. So they won outright, but Hoosiers lost,” says Dermody.

Debate was held in the Public Policy Committee, last week. Dermody chose not to speculate on the outcome prior to the meeting, saying he only expected quite a bit of discussion.

The future of legalizing the Sunday sale of alcohol for carry-out in the state remains a bit uncertain. Dermody is retiring at the end of this year to spend more time with his family.