By Jenifer JonesThe House Commerce Committee once again took up the issue of alcohol sales and licenses. One bill that passed the committee consolidates some liquor licenses. Representative Chuck Turbiville of Deadwood is a sponsor of the bill. He says it allows alcohol to be sold 365 days a year from seven AM to two AM. It also changes the way packaged alcohol is sold. Current law says there is no minimum age for someone to sell packaged liquor if the beverage constitutes less than 50 percent of the business of the establishment. "If you have a convenience store and you've got some 14 or 12 year old, they could be the only individual on the premise and by existing law be allowed to sell alcohol. We want to change that," Turbiville says. House Bill 1002 requires that someone 21 years or older be on site wherever alcohol is sold. But it also allows employees who are at least 18 years old to serve alcohol while waiting tables, which some committee members didn't agree with. It passed the committee nine to three and next moves to the House floor.
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