Legislative Session Opening Day: Sunday Alcohol Sales

A long-running battle is returning to the Capitol this year as proponents fight to overturn the ban on the retail sale of alcohol on Sundays.

Bars and restaurants can sell alcohol on Sunday, but supermarkets and liquor stores cannot. Yearly efforts to overturn that law — in the name of increasing sales and tax revenues — have failed. Many package store owners say their existing sales would simply be spread over seven days instead of six, and would lengthen their own work week or force them to pay an employee an extra day of wages. Last year, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy stayed on the sidelines. This year, he is pushing the change as part of a larger package of proposed reforms regarding alcohol sales.

Malloy says that Sunday sales and longer hours will add $8.5 million to the state coffers in tax revenues, but the package stores association says profits will not increase because the same sales will be spread out over another day.

Christopher Keating

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