WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - The battle over booze continues at the Statehouse as lawmakers meet to discuss the sale of packaged liquor in Indiana on Sundays.
While big box stores and grocery stores are all for the change, small liquor shop managers said they believe it will hurt their business.
Donna Lattanzio is the general manager of the Village Bottle Shoppe in West Lafayette. She's been working in the alcohol industry since 1979 and said she has seen a lot of changes throughout the years.
One change she said she's not looking forward to is the possibility of Sunday alcohol sales.
Under current Indiana law Hoosiers can buy alcohol in stores every day of the week except for Sundays. However, that could all change as Indiana lawmakers question whether or not to permit the sale of packaged liquor on Sundays.
"A lot of it probably served a purpose back in the day but present times not so much," West Lafayette resident Eugene Anane-Wae said. "I think it's something that has to be changed."
"It would be more convenient if you could buy it on Sunday but it's just a matter of planning," Lafayette resident Bob Shaffer said.
More convenient for customers, but Lattanzio said not so much for small mom-and-pop liquor stores because they're already closed on Sundays. Lattanzio said the majority of their business happens during business hours on Fridays and Saturdays.
Meanwhile, grocery stores believe they lose business to surrounding states that allow Sunday liquor sales.
"What we're talking about is $300 million to $600 million in revenue lost to Indiana businesses just on Sunday," Kroger spokesperson John Elliott said.
"I send out a survey in the summer and the fall and it's pretty negative for liquor sales on Sunday," State Rep. Sheila Klinker (D-27) said. "I think there is a fear."
Lattanzio said she believes if the current law is changed they'll actually lose business. She said because most people grocery shop on Sundays she believes shoppers would end up buying all of their booze at grocery stores instead of local bottle shops.
"We get so many people from out of state that come here and look over the unique scotches," Lattanzio said. "I think we'll have to continue to be creative to keep them from doing one-stop shopping at the grocery store because everybody has to get groceries."
Currently Indiana is the only state where you can buy alcohol in a bar or restaurant on Sunday but cannot take it home, and that's something many local liquor store owners said they hope stays that way.
Lawmakers did not vote on the issue Wednesday but could vote as early as next week.
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