State's high court allows liquor sales at Sam's Club

The Arkansas Supreme Court has upheld a decision allowing a Fayetteville Sam's Club to sell liquor.

In an opinion Thursday, justices affirmed a decision by a Pulaski County Circuit judge allowing the Wal-Mart Stores Inc. entity to operate the liquor store. The Fayetteville Sam's Club was designed so that the liquor store is walled off from the rest off the store and it operates separately.

The state Alcoholic Beverage Control Board granted the store's liquor license in 2007.

The Arkansas Beverage Retailers Association had challenged the lower court's decision, arguing that it would open the door for big-box retailers, grocery stores and athletic supply shops to sell liquor.

Special Justices John Goodson and David Maddox joined Hannah in his decision. Justices Donald L. Corbin and Elana Cunningham Wills recused from the case.

Under Arkansas law, hard liquor like whiskey and vodka must be sold at package stores. However, grocery stores and convenience stores can obtain a permit to sell beer.

Read tomorrow's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for full details.

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