UFCW council - red and blue
May 7, 2012
Turzai's Drink Tax is Back!
WE'RE #1!  WE'RE #1!
House GOP Leader Mike Turzai's latest scheme to dismantle the PLCB would make Pennsylvania a national leader in ... 
... TAXES!

Under Turzai's new version of House Bill 11, Pennsylvania would have the highest gallonage tax on wine and the third highest gallonage tax on spirits.


Our wine tax would be $3 per gallon higher than the next closest state


But is this really an area where we WANT to be #1?


Compare that to our current state rankings in two critical areas:


#50 ... We have the lowest rate of alcohol disease-related deaths in the nation.


#2 ... We rank second overall in revenue generated by the sale of wine and spirits.


Now, these are the kind of rankings that we ALL want to see.


Lawmakers need to reject Turzai's tax hike.


They need to end his reckless journey to dismantle an asset that generates $530 million a year in profits and taxes for all Pennsylvanians, employs 5,000 Pennsylvanians, and helps to keep our communities safer.

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The following article appeared in the Central Penn Business Journal on May 1, 2012:

Union: Washington auction shows PA liquor privatization unrealistic


The result of a liquor store license auction in Washington state undermines the rationale for privatization in Pennsylvania, according to the union representing state store employees.

Washington last week announced the results of an online auction for the licenses of its 167 liquor stores. Voters last year passed a referendum privatizing the system.


The auction earned $30.75 million, or $184,000 per license. Yet, privatization advocates have claimed Pennsylvania could raise nine times more per store, United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1776 said in a statement.


Republican State Rep. Mike Turzai is the lead sponsor of a privatization bill that would auction 1,250 licenses, doubling Pennsylvania's 621 existing liquor stores.

"I personally believe that private industry will jump at the chance to sell wine and spirits in a big way, and, when you include the selling of the current inventory, we can reach as much as $2 billion," Turzai said in July in testimony to the House Liquor Control Committee, according to a 
transcript on the House GOP website.

A figure of $2 billion works out to $1.6 million per license.

"Licenses just do not sell for that amount anywhere in the country," Local 1776 President Wendell Young said.

The Washington numbers suggest Pennsylvania would earn just $230 million from selling 1,250 licenses, the UFCW said.

A call to Turzai's office seeking comment on the UFCW statement was not immediately returned this morning.

The UFCW backs 
a bill that would modernize the state store system rather than privatizing it.


To read the article in the Central Penn Business Journal, click here.

Get the FACTS about privatization!

PLCB member2

Before you vote to privatize the Pennsylvania Wine and Spirits stores, you should know the facts.


Visit our website for more information. You can also find more information at the We Can't Afford It PA website.