I often tell Kentucky lawmakers they're needlessly losing money to Indiana and neighboring states because they won't legalize expanded gambling. So now I'm returning the favor by alerting Indiana lawmakers to an opportunity to recoup some revenue they've been losing to their Bluegrass neighbors.
I'm talking about Sunday liquor sales in the Hoosier State.
For decades now, Kentucky outlets have been free to sell alcohol seven days a week, while Sundays have been strictly off-limits for Indiana retailers. Some may think that's an admirable attempt to protect public morals. But who really believes anyone living in Indiana who wants a fifth of bourbon on Sunday doesn't already simply cross the bridge and buy it here – and let Kentucky collect the taxes on it?
This seems extremely similar to Kentucky's blind spot regarding casino gambling. Governments really should stick to keeping the peace and providing for the communal services and facilities of its citizens – not trying to control how people live their lives in private.
Fortunately, an Indiana House committee is currently considering whether the state's 80-year-old ban on Sunday alcohol sales should finally be retired. I really don't know what chances such a proposal has of passing the full legislature, but unless Indiana has piles of money stashed somewhere they don't know what to do with, I think it's an idea that at least deserves a serious hearing.