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OKLAHOMA CITY - Saying it was time to pick up where her predecessor had left off, Senator Kathleen Wilcoxson, R-Oklahoma City and Representative Dwayne Steidly, D-Claremore today announced they had filed a bill to ban the sale of 3.2. beer between the hours of midnight and 6 a.m.
"Three years ago, after many hard fought battles, State Senator Helen Cole was finally able to pass the state's first limits on the overnight sales of 3.2. beer," said Senator Wilcoxson, R-OKC.
"Senator Cole was concerned because many of those making such purchases were minors or adults who had already been drinking beer or other intoxicating beverages," noted Wilcoxson.
enator Cole had originally authored a ban on low point beer sales from midnight to six a.m., but before passage, the bill was amended so that the hours would be from 2 a.m. to 6 a.m.
"We are not saying that law-abiding, responsible adults cannot choose to purchase 3.2. beer. But I firmly believe by restricting the hours of sale, we can help reduce alcohol related car accidents, especially those involving teens and young adults," said Wilcoxson.
Among those offering support of Senator Wilcoxson's bill is Cindi Lamb whose husband was left paralyzed after his car was struck by a teenager who was under the influence at the time.
The driver of the other car had purchased 3.2 beer during the early morning hours at a convenience store.
"My husband passed away this past spring after being diagnosed with leukemia, but his life was actually cut short far sooner than that, the day he was struck by a drunk driver. Steve and I fully supported Helen Cole's efforts in 1995 because we believed it could help prevent tragedies such as ours. I intend to do everything in my power to help Senator Wilcoxson's new bill become law, and I urge everyone concerned about drinking and driving in our state to do the same," commented Lamb.
Others who support the proposed legislation include the Oklahoma Chiefs of Police Association and Tom Love, CEO of Love's Country Stores.
"Tom Love has already shown his support of this public safety effort by voluntarily prohibiting the sale of 3.2 beer between midnight and six a.m. I believe this is proof that grocery and convenience stores can support with this change," said Wilcoxson.
"We simply want to make it a little tougher for teenagers and people who've already been drinking to pick up another six-pack for the road. For the sake of friends, neighbors and family, I strongly urge all of Oklahoma to help us pass this bill in 1998," stated Wilcoxson.