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Bill allowing alcohol sales in old Idaho theaters advances

March 1, 2019

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Legislation to allow Idaho theaters on the National Register of Historic Places to obtain licenses to sell beer and wine is going to the state Senate.

The Senate State Affairs Committee on Friday voted 6-2 to approve the legislation that applies to theaters built before 1950. Besides providing entertainment, the theaters also hold such things as weddings and community events.

Democratic House Minority Leader Mat Erpelding says there are currently only five theaters in the state that would be affected by the law, but about a dozen in all could eventually qualify.

The proposed legislation will add an exception in Idaho law to allow the theaters to sell beer and wine when minors are present.

Bill supporters say it will help historic theaters remain financially viable with alcoholic beverage sales.