The 2015 Utah's Freest Cities Ranking

Beer Sale Restrictions

Category: Free Enterprise

State law does not impose any particular restrictions on the retail sale of beer at grocery stores or other locations when beer is purchased for consumption off the premises. Local cities and counties may impose restrictions if they so choose. In a free market, government does not have the right to tell businesses what lawful products they may or may not sell and when they may sell it. Such regulations are often arbitrary and violate the principles of free enterprise.

Some cities limit the sale of beer to daytime hours, some cities require sales to be under surveillance during the night, and some cities prohibit the sale of beer altogether. The beer sale restrictions metric is calculated from two data points: beer sale hour restrictions and a beer sale policy score. The hours of sale are scored based on the total percent of the day (out of 24 hours) that beer sales are restricted.

The policy score is a number from 1-5 based on the following scale:

  1. Beer sales completely prohibited
  2. Day & time restrictions on sales (this typically applies when cities prohibit all beer sales on Sunday)
  3. Time limit on sales
  4. Sales under surveillance (this applies when a city allows 24 hour sales but imposes surveillance requirements)
  5. No sale restrictions

The hours of sale percentage and the policy score are each normalized independently and weighted before being added together. The policy score counts for 60% and the hours of sale counts for 40%. The policy score recieves slightly more emphasis because, while the specific hour limitations may vary slightly from city to city, their variation is somewhat arbitrary, whereas the overall policy of a city to restrict sales or not creates a more significant limitation on the free market in a particular city.

To see a specific city's laws for this metric, click on its name in the right column, then find the row in the table below the Free Enterprise category.

City Scores

To learn about our scoring methodology, click here.

Rank City Score
1Cedar Hills1.867
1Lehi1.867
1Logan1.867
1Salt Lake City1.867
1South Salt Lake1.867
1Syracuse1.867
1West Haven1.867
8Brigham City1.120
8Eagle Mountain1.120
10Heber City-0.071
10Washington-0.071
12Bountiful-0.183
12Clearfield-0.183
12Kaysville-0.183
12Layton-0.183
12Midvale-0.183
12North Salt Lake-0.183
12Ogden-0.183
12Payson-0.183
12Roy-0.183
21American Fork-0.294
21Centerville-0.294
21Clinton-0.294
21Cottonwood Heights-0.294
21Draper-0.294
21Farmington-0.294
21Herriman-0.294
21Holladay-0.294
21Hurricane-0.294
21Murray-0.294
21North Ogden-0.294
21Orem-0.294
21Pleasant Grove-0.294
21Provo-0.294
21Riverton-0.294
21Sandy-0.294
21Saratoga Springs-0.294
21South Jordan-0.294
21Spanish Fork-0.294
21St. George-0.294
21Taylorsville-0.294
21Tooele-0.294
21West Jordan-0.294
21West Valley City-0.294
21Woods Cross-0.294
46South Ogden-0.321
47Springville-0.405
48Cedar City-0.627
49Lindon-1.041
50Highland-3.788