Residents Share Mixed Opinions on Proposed Law to Allow Sunday Liquor Sales

Devin Sanchez

NewsWest 9

ODESSA - If you've ever wanted to buy liquor on a Sunday, you may soon get your chance. That's because a proposed law would allow liquor stores to be open on what, until now, has been the only day they're closed.

"I'm sure there's people wanting to buy it on Sundays, so they'll probably come in and get it," One liquor store patron said.

There are 35 liquor stores in both Midland and Ector Counties and nearly 2,500 in the entire state. If proposed House Bill 421 passes, all those liquor stores could be open on Sundays.

"Liquor stores will still be closed New Years, Thanksgiving and Christmas, but they would be able to, if they chose to, be open Sundays between noon and 10 PM," Carolyn Beck with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, said.

Selling liquor on Sunday in Texas has been a debated topic for years.

"A similar bill was filed last session and probably all the sessions before that," Beck said.

Right now Texas operates under a Blue Law that dates back to Prohibition.

"We think whoever wants to be open can and whoever doesn't want to doesn't have to. It's basically the owner of the stores decision," Trinity Hartwig, with Spanish Shield Liquor in Odessa, said.

"I don't really think it's a good thing," Austin Keith, owner of Pinkies, said.

In a press release sent out by Texas Representative Thompson, she said the state could gain $8 million in revenue by allowing Sunday sales.

"We make plenty during the week that we wouldn't have to be open for the nine hours on Sunday," Hartwig said.

But this could benefit the cities.

The City of Midland says a 14% tax on mixed alcohol drinks collected from the state brought in nearly $400,000 last year.

And Odessa wasn't far behind.

Even if the bill did pass, Keith said he wouldn't open.

"We would not be open, but then I'd have the burden of increased hours, so I'd rather see the whole thing be done, " he said.

This is only a House Bill, it would still have to go through the Senate to be considered a law.