Budget Chair to State: Butt out of Liquor Business

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — One Alabama senator says it's time for the state to get out of the retail liquor business.

State
Senate budget committee Chairman Arthur Orr is working on a bill for
the legislative session beginning Feb. 5 that would do just that.

Orr
says closing state-run liquor stores and eliminating the 600 employees
could save $46 million annually. He wants to use private liquor stores
for all retail operations.

The administrator of the Alabama
Alcoholic Beverage Control Board, Mac Gipson, says the current system is
efficient. He predicts that switching to only private retailers will
lead to higher prices for consumers, which is what happened last year
when Washington closed its state-run liquor stores.

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