Idaho House panel introduces new liquor license bill

Posted at 3:22 PM, Jan 17, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-17 17:22:46-05

An Idaho House panel has introduced legislation that would require bars with liquor licenses to be open at least 20 hours a week and must sell at least 20 drinks per week.

Under Idaho law, a single liquor license is allowed for every 1,500 residents of cities. This quota system has resulted in long waiting lists, spawning complaints that the 69-year-old system meant to instill "temperance and morality" has instead spawned bidding wars -- rewarding speculators while punishing the patient.

Idaho State Police Capt. Russ Whealtey says Idaho law currently requires liquor licenses to be placed into use for the first six months, but there is no requirement after that time period.

The Idaho House Judiciary, Rules and Administration Committee introduced the bill Tuesday, meaning it must now go to a full hearing.

(by Associated Press)