Sunday opening

The leader of a group to put a measure on the ballot to repeal North Dakota’s Sunday “blue law” says his group is on track to make its goal.

Brandon Medenwald is a Fargo businessman who heads “North Dakota Open on Sundays.” He wants to get rid of the law that now prohibits most retailers from being open before noon Sundays.

"We've been out now for about 8 or 9 weeks,'" Medenwald said. "If I had to guess, we're somewhere between 12 and 15 percent completed."

The issue was brought up in the 2017 Legislature. It passed the House, but was rejected in the Senate.

Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

A group that wants to do away with North Dakota’s Sunday closing law has taken the first step to put the issue before voters.

“ND Open on Sundays” has submitted language for an initiated measure to Secretary of State Al Jaeger to review.

Under current law, most retailers have to be closed between midnight Saturday and noon Sunday.

A Fargo businessman is working on an initiated measure to do away with the law that prohibits retail stores from being open before noon on Sunday.

That –after the state Senate rejected a bill to make that change. It had earlier passed the House – on a second try.

Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

A House committee is looking at a bill that would do away with the prohibition that retail stores can’t be open before noon Sundays.

Rep. Pamela Anderson (D-Fargo) is the bill’s sponsor. She told the House Industry, Business and Labor Committee that individual stores should be given the choice of when to open on Sundays, or being closed that day. Anderson said stores like Hobby Lobby do not open at all Sundays -- and that's their choice.

"State law should not get involved in that argument," Anderson said. "We either believe in free market -- or not."