Liquor stores rebuff grocery stores' wine proposal

5:26 PM, Jan 1, 2013   |    comments
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By Erik Schelzig, Associated Press

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- An effort to reduce opposition to supermarket wine sales is so far failing to change the minds of the liquor store owners who stand to lose the most out of the proposal.

Under the bill taking shape before the Legislature convenes next week, local referendums would determine if wine could be sold alongside beer in grocery and convenience stores around the state. In exchange, liquor stores could branch out to sell items, like beer, mixers, ice and snacks.

The measure could also end the current law that allows owners to operate only one liquor store in the state.

But Chip Christianson, owner of J. Barleycorn's Wine and Spirits in Nashville, said he didn't buy his store to start a chain. He also raises underage drinking concerns about the proposal.

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