Small liquor retailers get break on privatization fees

Smaller liquor stores that have stayed in business after Washington’s privatization rules began got a boost from state lawmakers just before they adjourned their special session last month.

The Legislature agreed to exempt small retailers from paying a 17 percent fee on liquor sales made to bars and restaurants. Lobbyists for the smaller stores said the fee, which was mandated by the state’s new private-sales law, caused many operators to lose business after more restaurants and bars chose to avoid the markup by buying directly from distributors.

But now, larger retailers might push for the same break.

Read Associated Press coverage of this development from our partners at The Daily Herald in Everett.

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