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Re: Expanded liquor sales hours
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Posted on: 2017/11/27 1:48

Expanded liquor sales hours
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Jersey City seeks to expand liquor sales on Christmas, New Year's Eves

Nov 25
By Terrence T. McDonald
The Jersey Journal

JERSEY CITY -- Liquor stores in Jersey City may have a lucrative holiday season after all, with the City Council expected to approve a measure that would allow them to start selling booze three hours early on Christmas and New Year's Eves.

The two days are some of the busiest of the year for liquor sales, but this year they fall on Sunday, when stores are banned from selling alcohol before noon. The measure before the council would allow liquor stores' doors to open at 9 a.m. on Christmas and New Year's Eves, no matter what day they fall on.

Thomas McGarry, a manager at the Jersey City Super Buy-Rite, who supports the measure, said besides giving liquor stores a boost, it would also help liquor consumers plan their activities for those two days.

"Being able to get what you need earlier would benefit everyone," McGarry said.

The idea was proposed by ShopRite Liquors of Jersey City, an affiliate of Inserra ShopRite, which owns the Marin Boulevard location. Ira Weiner, an attorney representing the company, wrote a letter to Corporation Counsel Jeremy Farrell earlier this month suggesting the change and saying he was writing to them because his client had reached out to the city and had not heard back.

"These businesses depend on these days to carry them through the leaner months of the year," Weiner wrote. "While this circumstance only arises every six or seven years, the inability to open at a normal 9 a.m. hour this year would be a significant hardship on not only my client, but all other liquor establishments in Jersey City."

Inserra is a big backer of Mayor Steve Fulop. The mayor's campaign reports show Inserra Supermarkets gave his re-election bid $2,560, while its CEO, Lawrence R. Inserra Jr., gave $3,100 to Fulop and an additional $1,000 to Fulop's council slate.

Inserra Supermarkets also gave Coalition for Progress, a super PAC linked to Fulop's now-abandoned gubernatorial run, $20,000 while its owner, CEO, vice presidents and project manager gave an additional $15,000 combined.

Asked whether Inserra's support for the mayor holds any sway with the administration over this measure, city spokeswoman Jennifer Morrill said, "The mayor doesn't have a strong opinion one way or another whether the council supports or rejects this ordinance, however, it does seem like a common sense, one-time change that benefits hundreds of business owners across the city and thousands of residents in Jersey City that do last-minute shopping on Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve."

The council earlier this year changed the laws on liquor sales to let Liberty National sell cocktails before noon at the Presidents Cup.

The council meets on Wednesday at 6 p.m. at City Hall, 280 Grove St.

Terrence T. McDonald may be reached at Follow him on Twitter @terrencemcd. Find The Jersey Journal on Facebook. ... t_liquor_stores_on_c.html

Posted on: 2017/11/26 14:47

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