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Senate votes down "brunch bill" for 11am alcohol sales

The Senate has voted down a bill to allow restaurants to serve alcohol one hour earlier on Sundays.

Current law prohibits alcohol sales before noon on Sunday.  Jamestown Democratic Senator John Grabinger says the current law could be hurting restaurants in border communities.

"Apparently our neighbors to the east in the Vikings state allow their openings at 10am, our friends in the country to the north 9am, our friends to the west 8am, and to finish it off in the southern half of our territory, open at 7am.  This bill does not forbid cities and counties from continuing with their own ordinances that may keep the time at 12-noon if they so choose to do so.  Therefore the intent of this bill is also to create some positive impact by allowing our citizens to choose our establishments rather than crossing a border."

Opponents of the bill include Fargo Democratic Senator Carolyn Nelson.

"As much as I would probably like to have a mimosa at 11am on Sundays, there was some discussion in committee whether this also applied to off-sales, and whether you could go and buy your six pack or your case of beer so you can go enjoy the Vikings game at 12 o'clock and send somebody who doesn't like football out to get the beverages.  The vote in committee was 4 to 2, and some of you may want to join me in a no vote."

With a vote of 23 to 22, the bill did not pass.

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