A protest against liquor sales in Whiteclay, Nebraska. Photo: Unedited Media
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Liquor stores in Pine Ridge Reservation border town ask court for ruling to reopen





The Nebraska Supreme Court heard arguments in a landmark case affecting the sale of liquor in a town near the Pine Ridge Reservation.

Four stores in Whiteclay lost their liquor licenses in April after decades of complaints from officials of the Oglala Sioux Tribe, Native activists and some residents in the area. But the owners contend the Nebraska Liquor Control Commission's decision was illegal and they are asking the court for permission to reopen.

“The commission’s decision in this case is so blatantly in violation of the statutes,” attorney Andrew Snyder told the court on Tuesday morning, when arguments took place, The Omaha World-Herald reported.

Since the shutdown in the town, liquor sales have picked up in towns further from the reservation border, The Lincoln Journal Star reported earlier this month. The paper published an extensive report, Beyond Whiteclay, which looked at the impact of the closure on the Pine Ridge community, where alcohol abuse has contributed to social and law enforcement problems.

A decision in Kozal v. Nebraska Liquor Control Commission isn't expected for at least six weeks, The World-Herald reported. Audio and video of the argument will be posted on supremecourt.nebraska.gov.

Read More on the Story:
Nebraska Supreme Court hears arguments in case that will decide if Whiteclay beer stores stay closed (The Omaha World-Herald August 29, 2017)
Fate of Whiteclay beer sales in Nebraska Supreme Court's hands (The Lincoln Journal Star August 29, 2017)
Nebraska town awaits ruling on beer sales near reservation (The Associated Press August 28, 2017)
Whiteclay dries up for the summer after beer stores close (WOWT August 27, 2017)

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