This morning, Washington began an online auction to determine the fates of the 167 state liquor stores that will have to close by May 31. Under initiative 1183, private stores that want to sell sprits have to be 10,000 square feet—except the old, small state stores which are being grandfathered in.
Two critical things about the auction: 1. Bidders are trying to win the right to sell liquor in the state stores, but will still need to negotiate a lease with the landlord (or look for another location within a mile radius). 2. The WSLCB is auctioning off individual store rights AND the purchase of all the store rights in a single bid.
Right now, the action is for all the state stores in single bid, which are currently going for $26,100. (A link to the auction is here, but you have to get a username and password to watch the bid histories.)
The current high bidder is "Sangha" The two bids just below that belong to "BillGates" and "richardgates." I'm guessing these are aliases... Also bidding on all the state stores and a few of the individual ones: "GENOROSSO."
We'll keep you posted on this very exciting sale of state surplus as it develops. The auction closes on April 20.