Maui’s 24-Hour Alcohol Sales Law Reconsidered

July 11, 2017, 10:56 AM HST · Updated July 12, 9:58 AM
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The Maui Liquor Commission will meet at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, July 12, for a public hearing to consider proposed changes to existing rules that were implemented in February.

Madge Schaefer (left), Commission Chair Robert Tanaka (middle); and Mahina Martin (right) at the Liquor Commission meeting. PC: 5.9.17 by Wendy Osher/ Schaefer photo courtesy Office of Council Services.

Five months ago, the commission voted for and the mayor signed into law measures that: lift the 12 establishment cap on hostess bars; allow for the 24-hour sale of alcohol at retail establishments; and create a market for the home delivery of alcohol in the county.

The meeting was prompted by two letters to the commission from resident Mahina Martin, who argued that the items were allowed to pass without input from many of those affected by the changes.

Special meetings were then held in May to hear the concerns and the Commission voted to take the issue back to the public for consideration.

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Kihei resident Madge Schaefer joined the Committee for Responsible Liquor Control in filing a lawsuit alleging the body failed to give the public proper notice that they were going to take action on the policy changes. The lawsuit seeks to have the rules invalidated.

Proposed changes seek a repeal of the laws and a return to the previous 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. restriction on retail sales of alcohol; a 12 cap license for hostess bars; and the elimination of home delivery of alcohol.

Wednesday’s hearing will be followed by a regular meeting of the Liquor Control Commission.

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