Gov. Dannel Malloy has submitted a proposal to eliminate minimum price laws on alcohol.
Under the current law, which was adopted in 1981, retail stores must sell alcohol at prices set by liquor wholesalers.
The governor said this law results in unnecessarily high prices for consumers. According to the governor’s office, Connecticut is the only state in the country with such a law and it forces prices higher than prices for the same products in other states, which means Connecticut residents are either paying more or traveling out to state to make purchases.
“Because of this law, business owners have fewer rights in determining the operations of their businesses, and consumers are forced to pay artificially inflated, high prices for products that are sold at a substantially lower price nearly everywhere else. Let the businesses determine the prices for these products, not the government,” the governor said in a statement.
The governor also pointed to a report that a Massachusetts store chain used the price discrepancy in advertising to draw Connecticut residents to their locations across the border.
This is not the first time the governor has pushed to change the regulations - he proposed a similar bill last year.
Independent liquor stores have opposed repealing the law in the past, saying they need the minimum pricing laws so they can compete with big box stores and stay in business.
The legislation is Senate Bill 789 An Act Concerning the Regional Competitiveness of Connecticut’s Alcoholic Liquor Prices. And has been referred to the General Law Committee for consideration. Click here to read the full text of the bill.