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Agency Steps Up Enforcement of Liquor Laws

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File photo of police issuing a sobriety test at a DUI checkpoint. (credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

File photo of police issuing a sobriety test at a DUI checkpoint. (credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) _ Connecticut’s Department of Consumer Protection chief says he’s stepping up enforcement efforts to combat underage drinking.

State Liquor Control agents have already provided regulatory enforcement at two recent concerts in Hartford and Stamford. Commissioner William Rubenstein said the agency’s liquor control division plans to be present at other entertainment venues and ramp up routine compliance checks to ensure people under 21 aren’t purchasing alcoholic beverages.

Rubenstein made the announcement in advance of the Fourth of July holiday.

Last year, the agency, law enforcement and volunteer youth conducted 800 compliance checks throughout the state at restaurants, bars, package stores and grocery stories. Rubenstein said 270 liquor permits were then temporarily suspended for liquor law violations, most involving illegal sales to minors.

Besides suspensions, the agency assessed about $1.35 million in fines.

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