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Friday, February 20, 2015

Liquor Privatization on House Agenda Next Week

The state House returns to session on Monday, Feb. 23, to debate and vote on various issues of importance. Session is scheduled for Monday through Friday. All of House session and most committee meetings will stream live at PAHouseGOP.com. Many events also may be viewed at Facebook.com/PAHouseGOP.

Entrepreneurs vs. Dinosaur of Bureaucracy, the PLCB

The House Liquor Control Committee is scheduled to meet Monday (10 a.m., Room G-50, Irvis Office Building) to discuss and vote on legislation (House Bill 466, Rep. Mike Turzai, R-Allegheny County) aimed at bringing private sector sales of wine and liquor – both wholesale and retail – throughout the Commonwealth. To read an overview of the bill, click on the link at the top of this email.

The current state store system was created in 1933 by then-Gov. Gifford Pinchot, who said the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board’s (PLCB) mission was to make liquor sales “as inconvenient and expensive as possible.” Under anyone’s definition (except the self-interested people working to preserve the status quo), the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (PLCB) has met and exceeded Pinchot’s mandate.

Pinchot’s mandate still persists as PLCB operations turn normally law-abiding citizens into bootleggers. By the PLCB’s own reckoning, border bleed accounts for more than $300 million in lost sales and taxes. An estimated 45 percent of the consumers in the state’s southeast counties cross state lines to purchase alcohol.

The PLCB’s recent “modernization and expansion” efforts exhibit why government should not be in business:

Using public dollars to build what is, in essence, a party bar with big screen TVs, lounge furniture and top-scale accoutrements in the PLCB’s state-owned headquarters building.
Paying nearly $200,000 to an employee-connected company for “courtesy” training.
Spending millions of public dollars annually on advertising and millions of dollars more to rebrand their state stores (with a similar name), even though the PLCB has a monopoly on the market in Pennsylvania.

As a state agency, their advertising encourages alcohol consumption for holidays, social events and anytime anyone wants a drink. They advertise at professional sporting events, on internet sites (such as Pandora), on billboards and other outlets.

Establishing and purchasing an expensive gumball machine-style “kiosk” program for wine purchases from a company with political connections. The system forced consumers who wanted to purchase wine to submit personal information and breathe into a machine monitored by state workers. Incidentally, the kiosk program, as it lost the PLCB more than $1 million and was shut down, is still costing the state in legal fees.

Using the board’s monopoly position to market in-house labels such as TableLeaf Wine and Vinestone, in direct competition and at the expense of all other brands.

Gov. Tom Wolf recently appointed a career politician, Tim Holden, rather than an administrator or businessman to head up the troubled agency.

Three of the PLCB’s former top officials have been under investigation and cited for very clear ethics violations.

Pennsylvania residents deserve better.

Some people will argue for “modernization.” Can a washboard really be modernized? Or treatment with leeches? Eight track players? A Victrola? A Mercury? A dinosaur? No. And the PLCB is a dinosaur which needs total change. The #PAHouse will take up that needed change next week. #FreeOurBoozePA.


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13 comments:

Anonymous said...

This is a bad idea, the government should keep control.

Anonymous said...

Alcohol leads to alcoholism and liver disease.

We need to make it illegal and a declare war on anyone still bold enough to lawlessly consume it in the privacy of their homes.

It's sick they want to allow businesses to sell this poison. You can tell the users.. they're not like the rest of us. Not living up to their full potentials, not working as hard as the people around them (all facts)

Did you know the liquor store in coudersport is within 5 miles of two schools!? Wake up people.

No amount of money we spend fighting this scourge could be too high.
No prison sentence could be too long for the violators.

Don't listen to people who will tell you responsible adults can consume this safely. They're drunks themselves, selfish and out for their next fix. Nothing more.


If we don't, society will crumble under a bunch of shiftless lazy drunks and generations of our children will be completely lost to it's allure.

UP WITH HOPE, DOWN WITH DOPE.. er... LIQUOR

Anonymous said...

749, that... was... AWESOME!!!

John Rz said...

There is a whole lot of dishonesty in this piece.
What Governor Pinchot said 80 years ago is totally irrelevant today. Check out one of the modern rebranded stores.
The Plcb never "purchased" a single kiosk. They remained the property of the vendor. The Plcb just leased space.
The ethics violation bogey man is just that. Corbett, in line with his behavior as AG, conducted a political witch hunt and found pretty close to nothing., Golf outings. Ticket to a Philadelphia Union game. That one cracked me up. Not the Phillies, Eagles, Flyers, or Sixers. Heck I didn't even know Philly had a Soccer team! And there are two things you are ignoring regarding this issue. Since it was just a witch hunt none of the vendors are being charged with bribing public officials. And these are the same vendors that will pretty much be running the wholesale in Pa if it were to privatize.
Tim Holden was appointed to the Liquor control board by Tom Corbett, as were the other two members, and all three came from political backgrounds. That makes sense because they deal with the legislature. Governor Wolf merely moved Holden to the chair. The retail operations of the LCB are handled by folks like John Metzger, Dale Horst, and others either hired from the private sector or worked there way up through store operations.
There's more but I'm outta time to waste. Remember 7% of the population uses over half the alcohol produced and 80% drink once per week or less and these stores are a money maker.
Privatization of revenue producing publicly owned assets is theft. That Simple.

Anonymous said...

Wow! So you're telling me, a guy who works 12 to 16 hours a day 6 days a week, I'm a loser and need locked up because I like a beer? I work hard for my money and I get no hand outs. Get a life!!!! I'm probably paying for you.

Got Milk? said...

HOORAY 7:49!! I agree totally. Look at statistics of the costs and pain and suffering caused by this moneymaker for the government. That is the ONLY reason the government allows and supports this poison!!

Anonymous said...

It's plain and simple money talks and bulls^&t walks especially with the wolfe in the hen house!

Anonymous said...

We tried prohibition once. If you don't know about the results, google it before commenting!

Anonymous said...

Our enemies would love nothing more than to be able to invade a drunken, doped up, fat, welfare loving country.

Anonymous said...

7:49 you may be right, Obama brews his own beer in the Whitehouse of all places, So "not like the rest of us, not living up to potential and not working hard" (or working at all ) really fits."
On the other hand, George Washington, Benjamine Franklin, Sam Adams, John Hancock, and other founding fathers were known to drink regularly. in addition , Teddy Roosevelt, Nixon, Truman etc. almost ALL American presidents were drinkers in addition to foreign leaders ( Putin, Lenin, Stalin, etc)
My point is, "not living up to their full potential"? is an extremely ignorant statement.

Anonymous said...

The definition of 'ignorance' is basically 'lacking knowledge'. It is not an insult, we are all ignorant of most things.
Either you didn't get my response or you are editing too much.

Anonymous said...

6:33 pm welcome to the fat,lazy,dope smoking obamanation ! And we won't be taken over we are being destroyed from the inside !

Dan I am? Dam I'm not said...

WE WANT PROHIBITION AND WE WANT IT NOW!!