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New legislation would allow Texas liquor stores to open on Sundays

Cropped Photo: shankar s. / CC BY 2.0

New legislation introduced in the Texas House would repeal so-called "blue laws" and allow liquor stores to open on Sunday.

State Rep. Richard Peña Raymond, D-Laredo, has introduced House Bill 1100, which would allow package stores (a.k.a. liquor stores) to be open seven days a week.

The bill would also allow the stores to operate between 9 a.m. and 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and noon to 10 p.m. on Sunday.

"Allowing Sunday sales in Texas is long overdue. I’ve heard from many constituents – including small business owners – who have asked me to file this bill to let the free market be free,’’ Raymond said. “Now is the time for Texas to repeal this outdated law."

42 states allow the sales of spirits on Sunday. Texas already allows Sunday sales of all other alcohol beverages for all other retailers, including bars, restaurants, clubs, grocery and convenience stores and hotels.

Historically, blue laws were meant to prohibit the sale of certain items on Sundays, so the day would be spent in church and resting.

Texas' only remaining blue laws apply to liquor stores and car dealers. However, it wasn't that long ago that dozens of other stores were forced to close on Sundays.

Those restrictions were repealed in 1985, and as this Chicago Tribune article points out, the list of things you could finally, legally buy on Sundays was pretty surprising:

Once-prohibited items will include clothing, furniture, kitchen utensils, stoves, refrigerators, air conditioners, electric fans, washers, dryers, radios, televisions, cameras, hardware, power-driven hand tools, jewelry, silverware, watches, clocks, luggage and musical instruments.
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