Budget Hearings Update – Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board

The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (PLCB) was before both the House and Senate Appropriations Committees this week to discuss its current financial state, and where it expected to be for the upcoming 2013-14 State Budget. Beyond talking about their finances, the PLCB was faced with many questions concerning ongoing efforts to privatize.

Legislators on both sides of the privatization effort, asked questions about the PLCBs abilities to control alcohol sales, and deliver profits for the Commonwealth, and like the legislature, the two board members (one seat has been vacant for several months) seem split on the idea. What the board members did agree on was modernization. There was no argument that modernization efforts would continue to provide the control that the PLCB is entrusted to perform, and increase revenues for the state.

Some interesting facts unveiled at the hearings:

  • The amount of stores that do not make a profit has been cut in half in last five years, and expect to have even less stores not make a profit than originally expected this budget year. Also, every wine and spirits store, when adding back the sales tax and liquor tax, creates revenue for Pennsylvania.
  • By 2020 the PLCB hopes to have updated/renovated every store in the Commonwealth. Updating and renovating wine and spirit stores has shown to increase profits by more than 3%.

We are urging our members to TAKE ACTION!  Support the workers of the Wine and Spirits stores by contacting your legislator and urging them to oppose any effort to privatize the PLCB. Tell them to modernize, not privatize!