Okla. high court to hear arguments on wine proposal

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OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Supporters and opponents of a plan for grocery stores in Oklahoma's largest counties to sell wine will state their case to the Oklahoma Supreme Court.

Oral arguments regarding Initiative Petition 396 are set for Thursday. Oklahomans for Modern Laws filed the proposal and must collect the signatures of 155,216 registered voters to place the issue on the November ballot.

The plan would create a new wine license that would allow the retail sale of wine for off-premises consumption by grocery stores instead of just package liquor stores. More than 30 other states allow wine to be sold in grocery stores.

Supporters say it would make buying wine more convenient. But opposition has mounted from liquor retailers and groups that believe increasing the availability of alcohol will also increase its abuse.

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