Coalition Members Support SB 54 in Front of Senate Federal and State Affairs Committee
TOPEKA, Kan., Feb. 15, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Representatives of the Coalition for Jobs and Consumer Choice (CJCC) testified today before the Senate Federal and State Affairs Committee at the State Capitol in support of Senate Bill No. 54. The group stressed the economic benefits of updating the laws regarding the sale of beer, wine and spirits not only for grocery and convenience stores in urban areas, but also for the struggling rural stores who desperately need a lifeline during these tough economic times.
"Grocery stores are struggling, and in some communities, their very survival is at risk. Numerous stores have closed, which weakens the community itself as a business destination," said Mike Moon, owner of Moon's Hometown Markets in Osawatomie and Humboldt. "As the consumer drives to neighboring cities and towns to purchase these goods and or services, they take their grocery dollars with them. Passing this legislation gives grocers the ability to shore up sagging or declining sales with a new department that can contribute immediately to covering the cost of overhead."
Under current laws, licensed liquor stores are the only retailers that can sell full strength beer, wine and spirits. The passage of SB 54 would allow other retailers like grocery stores and convenience stores to sell these products, and would enable liquor stores to sell food items. SB 54 would create more convenience for customers and encourage free market competition, which would result in lower prices and increased economic activity.
On January 25, CJCC released a study, "An Economic Case for Increased Competition in the Sale of Beer, Wine, and Spirits in the State of Kansas," by economist Dr. Art Hall, Director of the Center for Applied Economics at the University of Kansas, which finds updating Kansas' laws regarding the sale of beer, wine, and spirits could create nearly 15,000 jobs, $343 million in wages, and $72.5 million in state and local tax revenue for the state.
"Dr. Hall's study clearly demonstrates how changing Kansas liquor laws would positively impact our economy," said Gratz Peters, co-owner of Pete's Corporation and board member of the Petroleum Marketers and Convenience Store Association of Kansas. "The facts are clear. Current laws in Kansas on the sale of beer, wine and spirits are hurting jobs and the Kansas economy, as well as customers and taxpayers. The facts revealed in this study alone are more than enough reason to support needed reform."
Other representatives from the Coalition for Jobs and Consumer Choice that testified in Tuesday's hearing include Mike Braxmeyer, owner and operator of Williams Brothers Supermarket in Atwood; Dr. Art Hall, Executive Director of the Center for Applied Economics, University of Kansas; Gary Krueger, owner of Gary's BP in Stillwell; Jim Puff, owner of Alma Food Mart and Puffy's Steak and Ice House in Maple Hill; and Mike Thornbrugh, QuikTrip.
The Coalition for Jobs and Consumer Choice (CJCC) represents hundreds of companies and thousands of Kansans who recognize the immediate and positive impact that updated laws on the sale of beer, wine and spirits will have on the Kansas economy. To learn more, please visit CJCC's website at www.jobsforkansas.com.
SOURCE Coalition for Jobs and Consumer Choice