Strong beer sales bill headed to governor's desk

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- A bill to allow stronger beer to be sold in Tennessee supermarkets and convenience stores is headed for Gov. Bill Haslam's desk.

The House voted 72-12 on Monday to approve the bill sponsored by Republican Rep. Ryan Haynes of Knoxville. The Senate last week passed its version sponsored by Sen. Bill Ketron of Murfreesboro on a 22-7 vote.

Current law allows any beer stronger than 5 percent by weight -- or about 6.3 percent by the more common measure of alcohol by volume -- to only to be sold in liquor stores. The bill would raise that limit to 8 percent by weight, or about 10 percent by volume.

The change would take effect in 2017.

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