Maui to consider repealing decision that allows 24-hour liquor s - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Maui to consider repealing decision that allows 24-hour liquor sales

(Image: Wikimedia Commons) (Image: Wikimedia Commons)
WAILUKU, MAUI (HawaiiNewsNow) -

A day after listening to emotional testimony, members of the Maui County Liquor Control Commission voted on Wednesday to advance the process to consider repealing their recent decision to allow 24-hour retail sales of alcohol and to remove the cap on the number of hostess bars.

In the meantime, the new rules remain in effect.

The commission held a special meeting Tuesday to consider a petition from Wailuku resident Mahina Martin, asking for a repeal of the changes that the commission adopted in February and that the mayor later approved.

"The outcome of today's vote is both good and bad," said Martin. It's good that they recognize everyone's concerns. It's bad because it delays getting to a repeal. I want to make sure it's not a stalling tactic. I don't think it is, but I just don't know if legally, they could have found another way."

Wednesday's unanimous vote triggers a 30-day period to inform the public that the commission will consider going back to the original liquor rules.

Public testimony will be taken at a future commission meeting. If the members vote to repeal the changes, the mayor must also sign off before the restrictions can go back in place.

"I'm totally against this 24-hour sale. This is crazy," said former Mayor Charmaine Tavares during Tuesday's special meeting. "If somebody wants 24-hour liquor, they should move to Las Vegas."

A mother whose son died in a crash caused by a drunken driver also urged the commission members to rethink their decision.

"We know with something like this, if there is 24-hour liquor sales, I’m just afraid that I’m going to lose another family member to it," said Andrea Maniago.

The changes do not affect bars and restaurants, which still have to stop selling liquor at 2 a.m.

All of the other counties in Hawaii have restrictions on retail sales of alcohol. On Oahu, liquor sales in stores are prohibited between midnight and 6 a.m. For Kauai and the Big Island, alcohol sales in stores are not allowed between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m.

Some video included in this report is courtesy of Wendy Osher/MauiNow.com

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