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New law to shorten some store hours

(Published July 30, 2001)

A new D.C. law that takes effect Aug. 3 will require retail establishments that sell alcoholic beverages for off-premises consumption to operate only between the hours of 9 a.m. and 10 p.m.

"The law is clear, and we will work with the community as well as businesses to make sure that the law is enforced," said a written statement issued July 27 by Winnie Huston, interim director of the cityís new Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA).

All businesses that have a Retail Class A or B alcoholic beverage license, including liquor stores and corner "mom-and-pop" convenience stores, will be affected by the change, according to ABRA officials.

The new hours also apply to businesses that previously were granted permission to operate during extended hours as part of their license issued by the Alcoholic Beverage Control Board, officials said.

They said all businesses that wish to operate during extended hours must re-apply under provisions of the new law.

The change in operating hours for stores that sell alcoholic beverages was mandated by a comprehensive change in the cityís alcoholic beverage control laws that was spearheaded by Ward 6 Councilwoman Sharon Ambrose. Ambrose chairs the city councilís Committee on Consumer and Regulatory Affairs. The law also created the new Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration.

City officials said store owners may request information about applying or re-applying for extended hours of operation by calling ABRA at (202) 442-4450.

Copyright 2001, The Common Denominator