Sunday Sales Has Broad Political Appeal Near Border

Freshwater Package Store. Photo by Christine Stuart.
Freshwater Package Store. Photo by Christine Stuart.
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Dominic Alaimo, Enfield’s Republican “Man of the Year,” said the governor’s party affiliation never mattered to him as long as he or she was willing to sign a bill allowing Sunday liquor sales. That, he said, would make him happy. The sign outside his package store on Route 5 seems to say it all.


Alaimo is grateful he’ll be able to open his doors on Sunday, but he said he would have liked to see the legislation go further by eliminating some of the price fixing and beer territory guidelines to which he’s forced to adhere.


The state’s beer distribution territory setup was problematic a few years ago, Alaimo said, after the horrific shooting at Hartford Distributors, which is the company that delivers Alaimo’s beer. Alaimo said he was unable to restock for eight to nine days, and he was unable to get the beer from another distributor in a different part of the state because of industry rules. Alaimo said he “almost went out of business.”


One of Alaimo’s favorite sayings is related to the end of prohibition, during which organized crime ran the liquor industry. He said when the mob got out of the liquor business, the state of Connecticut got in. Lifting the Sunday sales ban is a step in the right direction, he said, but it doesn’t go far enough.


Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy doesn’t necessarily disagree with Alaimo even though they’re at opposite ends of the political spectrum.


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