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ABC stores to add Sunday hours
Sunday, June 17, 2012
By ASHLEY JACKSON - Bulletin Staff Writer
As of July 1, local ABC stores will be open on Sundays.
The three stores in the area — on Greensboro Road, Commonwealth Boulevard and Fairystone Park Highway — will be included, according to Virginia ABC spokesperson Kathleen Shaw.
Stores will be open from 1 to 6 p.m. Sundays.
Based on legislation in 2004 passed by the General Assembly, ABC stores were able to open on Sundays in Norfolk, Virginia Beach and areas in Northern Virginia, she said.
Another round of legislation in 2008 allowed stores in Portsmouth, Hampton Roads, Newport News and Richmond, or cities with populations of 100,000 or more, to open on Sundays, Shaw added.
Currently, 132 of the 337 ABC stores in Virginia are open on Sundays due to the previous legislation, according to Shaw.
New legislation that was passed by the General Assembly in February will allow all ABC stores to sell alcohol on Sundays as of July 1, she said. That legislation removed the population restrictions, she added.
The Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control is working with regional offices to determine if any ordinances exist that would prohibit Sunday alcohol sales, but it has not found any such ordinances so far, according to Shaw.
There are some ordinances in the state that prohibit the sale of liquor, wine and beer before 10 a.m. on Sundays; however, the new law calls for stores to open at 1 p.m., she said.
Once all of the stores are open, the ABC department will monitor each store for six months to assess customer demand and sales on Sundays. If the sales and customer support are low in particular stores, the department will decide whether to close those stores on Sundays, Shaw said.
Sunday sales are being added to generate more money for the state’s general fund, she said.
Projections predict that there will be a $9 million increase in sales and a $2.5 million increase in profit transfers into the general fund over the next four years as a result of Sunday sales, according to Shaw.
The General Assembly decides how the general fund is spent, but it usually pays for projects, social programs and roads, she added.
So far, the ABC department has not received any negative comments about opening stores on Sundays across Virginia, she said.