Republicans toast, Democrats pan Corbett's idea to change alcohol sales
By Trib Total Media
Published: Thursday, Jan. 31, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
Reaction to Gov. Tom Corbett's plan to sell the state liquor store system and expand beer and wine sales fell mostly along party lines among lawmakers.
“To me the issue is we're losing control of something we make money on in the state,” said Rep. Ted Harhai, D-Monessen. “The whole thing is not broken. You don't need to fix it.”
Harhai said it's “totally incorrect that you're going to get (booze) cheaper.”
“I like it top to bottom,” said Rep. Jeff Pyle, R-Ford City.
Corbett did not attempt to sell the plan on better prices. Convenience was his main theme when he outlined the proposal on Wednesday.
“I think it's a terrible idea,” said Chrissy Sullivan, 45, a banquet server from Lawrenceville. “It will take away a lot of jobs.”
Her co-worker, Connie Davenport, 61, of the Hill District said it “sounds like a good idea. We see a lot of people trying to go to the state store, and it's closed.”
Chris Reid, 49, of Verona said he favors privatizing wine and liquor sales because it would provide “more availability and more convenience for everybody” while allowing more people to become store owners.
“Different shops could offer you specials and bargains,” Reid said. Government-owned stores are “like Big Brother watching you anyway.”
Sen. Jim Ferlo, D-Highland Park, said the state should not tear down a system that provides jobs and makes money for the state.
“We need to improve that system to the benefit of consumers while continuing to take advantage of the important resources and public health protections the system provides today,” he said.
Charlie Gerow, spokesman for the Coalition to End the Liquor Monopoly, called the move overdue.
“Polls consistently show that getting the state out of the liquor business is immensely popular,” he said. “Privatization makes good financial sense. It's a true benefit to consumers. It's sensible public policy. It's time for it to be a reality.”
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Dog wardens will canvass state for license compliance
- Louis Freeh gets expedited appeal to Graham Spanier suit
- Rep. Murtha’s widow skirts politics for civic pursuits
- Tobacco companies expected to contest Pennsylvania’s settlement on payments