On PennLive.com, Wendell W. Young IV writes, “Despite the rhetoric from the privateers, and their media champions, consumers enjoy competitive pricing and a selection of wine and spirits that rivals any private retailer out there.”
By Wendell Young IV
Is it time for PennLive to perhaps take a different tack on the long-running battle over dismantling the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (PLCB) by, perhaps giving it a rest already (Editorial: Lawmakers need to go back and include liquor in ‘liquor reform,’ Oct. 19, 2016)?
The fact is that the PLCB generates significant revenues for every taxpayer and it provides 5,000 jobs for Pennsylvanians, including 3,500 men and women I am proud to represent who work in the wine and spirits shops.
The PLCB last year generated more than $584 million in taxes, profits and other transfers to taxpayers.
Despite the rhetoric from the privateers, and their media champions, consumers enjoy competitive pricing and a selection of wine and spirits that rivals any private retailer out there.
Lawmakers have already done enough damage to this valuable asset by passing a law to allow more than 10,000 private retail establishments to sell wine to go. We opposed this law, Act 39, will cost taxpayers millions in lost revenue.
These new licensees will not match the selection or the prices now available. These establishments will not hire any new staff and there will be no tidal wave of new jobs as some have promised.
Lawmakers should focus their energies on improving this asset and not rush into dangerous changes more than they already have.
Wendell Young IV is president of Local 1776 of the United Food and Commercial Workers, which represents Pennsylvania state liquor store employees.