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Coronavirus in Oklahoma: Liquor stores considered essential

Liquor stores in Oklahoma are exempt from the governor's closure order, a state regulatory agency said Wednesday.

Gov. Kevin Stitt on Tuesday ordered the closure of nonessential businesses in counties with COVID-19 cases through April 15.

"Based on ... the federal guidelines the governor references for purposes of distinguishing essential and nonessential, I think liquor stores would fall under the essential category under food and agriculture," said Steven Barker, general counsel at the Oklahoma Alcoholic Beverage Laws Enforcement Commission.

He stressed that liquor stores in locations under municipal closure orders should check with their local officials.

"Your municipality may go further and deem you nonessential," he warned.

The ABLE Commission on Tuesday authorized liquor stores to make home deliveries until April 17. Stores must use their own employees to make the deliveries.

Nolan Clay

Nolan Clay was born in Oklahoma and has worked as a reporter for The Oklahoman since 1985. He covered the Oklahoma City bombing trials and witnessed bomber Tim McVeigh's execution. His investigative reports have brought down public officials,... Read more ›

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