In November, people in Oklahoma will have a chance to change their alcohol laws. They'll get to vote on SQ 792, which received the signatures needed to hit the ballot.
Before exploring the ramifications of SQ 792, it's important to understand what the alcohol sales laws look like now. Only designated liquor stores are allowed to sell any wine. On top of that, the cold beer that grocery stores and other convenience stores sell is very weak, at just 3.2 percent alcohol content. You can get stronger beers if you head to a liquor store, but it has to be warm.
If residents support SQ 792, grocery stores will finally be able to sell wine, and they'll also be able to sell cold beer that is over the 3.2 percent cutoff.
Those who support the change say that they'll be able to offer people much more variety. In most states, beer and wine can be sold in any grocery store, convenience store, gas station, or party store with the right license. It can be warm or cold, and it can be over 3.2 percent. In fact, many people in Oklahoma, if they buy cold beer, actually get a watered down version of what people in other states can buy. They may also miss out on the rising craft beer boom, as the vast majority is well over 3.2 percent.
The pushback against SQ 792 mostly comes from those who run liquor stores. If grocery stores can be purveyors of what they are already able to sell, they'll lose customers. Liquor store owners even tried to create an opposing option, known as SQ 791, but they couldn't get the signatures in time for November's vote.
A Shift for Business Owners
If this goes through and the law changes, it could be a huge shift for store owners. They'll have new sales channels and they'll be able to legally move many more products. It's important for them to keep an eye on SQ 792 in the November elections so they know exactly what the law permits and avoid any illegal sales practices.
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