Balancing Privatization with Public Protection Efforts

Government should concentrate on vigorously regulating the distribution of alcohol and cracking down on those who misuse it, especially minors and those who drink and drive. 

A government that devotes its energies to enforcement, compliance and education – rather than selling alcohol – benefits everyone.

A number of states with completely private systems consistently report fewer instances of DUI, underage drinking and alcohol diseases than Pennsylvania.  In fact, of the four states scoring the best in MADD’s national rankings, three have completely private systems and one is semi-private.  Many studies have shown that moving from a state-run monopoly to a market-based license state has no cognizant effect on alcohol-related crimes.

Pennsylvania, the strictest of the 50 states, lagged behind in the ratings – further reaffirming that improved enforcement and education will serve us better than merely clinging to our antiquated state-store system.

The bill was drafted with Pennsylvania’s conservative views on alcohol in mind.  The proposal:
>   Retains tight regulatory control.
>   Strengthens law enforcement.
>   Clamps down on underage drinking.
>   Promotes education.
>   Respects current employees.

For the first time in Pennsylvania history, ALL wine and spirits retailers will be subject to compliance checks. The possible license revocation for violations serves as an incentive to private licensees to follow the law to protect their business investment.  No such incentive exists in the current system. All wine and spirits retailers and their employees will be required to attend RAMP (Responsible Alcohol Management Program) training, and use identification scanners with age verification software. Fines will be doubled for licensees who violate provisions of the Liquor Code and PLCB will be authorized to suspend or revoke licenses for “nuisance” operators.