- Associated Press - Friday, October 2, 2015

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - The Alabama Alcoholic Beverage Control Board says it’s shutting down 15 state-owned liquor stores to save money.

The agency announced the cuts late Thursday as a way to cope with a $5.5 million reduction in funding from the state operating budget.

All but two of the 15 stores being closed or consolidated are in south Alabama. Three are located in the state capital of Montgomery.

Officials say the 15 stores had combined total sales of about $11 million last year, but their total operating income was just $170,000.

The store closings are just one part of a reduction in state services based on the tight budget approved by legislators.

The state is also closing 31 driver’s license offices, five state parks and as many as 19 National Guard armories.

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