Wendell W. Young IV, President of UFCW Local 1776, urged the Senate to reject legislation to dismantle the LCB that was strong-armed through the House today and instead support bipartisan legislation designed to modernize the agency.

 “There’s no good reason to put 3,500 UFCW members on the unemployment line. There’s no good reason to put 1,100 Main Street beer distributors out of business and jeopardize the livelihoods of the 12,000 men and women they employ – other than to make Tom Corbett’s corporate cronies happy,” said Young, who also serves as President of the UFCW PA Wine and Spirits Council.

“Gov. Corbett might get another helicopter ride or pleasure cruise on a yacht that his cronies will pay for.  But thousands of working men and women will get nothing more than a pink slip.”

The House’s passage of House Bill 790 is not the end of this battle, Young said. He noted that House members ignored dozens of public health and safety groups opposed to privatization with their reckless vote, including the Centers for Disease Control, MADD, the Police Chiefs Association, and the Drug and Alcohol Service Providers Organization of Pennsylvania, among others.

“It’s ironic that Tom Corbett got elected by promising to reform Harrisburg and create jobs. Instead, he buys off votes with projects and who knows what else and he strong arms lawmakers to put 17,000 people out of work,” Young said. “Our unemployment rate is going up yet the national rate is dropping. This bill will make a bad situation worse.”

“The fight is not over yet. Common sense legislation has already been introduced in the Senate, as it has been in the past. These bills make sense for consumers – not special interests,” Young said.

Young urged the Senate to convene public hearings on modernization bills.

“We are urging senators to take a hard look at all of the bills to make sure that consumers’ expectations are met,” said Young. “I have no doubt that if senators keep the consumers’ and taxpayers’ interests first and foremost as they begin to debate these bills, common sense will prevail.” 

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