You are hereState Rep Letter: Privatizing State Stores will increase problems
State Rep Letter: Privatizing State Stores will increase problems
From the Philly Inquirer, March 16, 2011 :
Nathan Benefield of the Commonwealth Foundation suggested at a recent hearing on privatizing the state liquor stores that we should vastly increase the number of liquor outlets in order to bring in adequate revenues for the state. He also supports a new alcohol tax that will bring in more revenue only if Pennsylvanians drink a lot more alcohol. Benefield argued that would be better public policy than our current system. Really? He said Pennsylvania would need about 3,000 liquor stores to be at the national average. We now have about 600 statewide. Can you imagine what Philadelphia would look like if we had five times the number of liquor outlets as we do now? It's not a pretty picture.
Increasing the number of state liquor outlets by 500 percent and selling lots more alcohol will lead to higher crime rates, more underage and binge drinking, and more drunk driving - something the current system works to avoid. Increasing liquor outlets is very unwise public policy. That is why I cannot support privatization of the state wine and spirits stores. And if the Commonwealth Foundation were a responsible organization, it would not endorse the idea either.
State Rep. Babette Josephs, Philadelphia