Pennsylvania Senate Majority Whip Pat Browne today announced his support for Representative Mike Turzai's efforts to sell off the state's liquor stores. Browne and House Majority Leader Turzai were joined by Republican Senator Bob Mensch in making the announcement.
"I believe, along with my colleagues here today, Governor Corbett, and what I'm confident is a majority of the General Assembly, that it is only proper that this function, similar to the majority of other states, be turned over to the private sector, with the proper state regulation and oversight," Browne said.
Opponents of the effort worry the move will result in a spike in underage drinking and drinking and driving, as well as a loss of revenue for the state.
Supporters, including Representative Turzai disagree.
"We're looking to increase law enforcement and regulatory aspects of the LCB. Right now we think that you could have a better regulatory environment if you are not also in the business of promoting vodka sales on Mother's Day," he said.
Turzai said the move would create thousands of jobs. Supporters of the state store system say otherwise, and warn that the result would actually be lost jobs.
A report, commissioned by Governor Tom Corbett, on the economic impact of selling the state liquor stores is expected to be released soon.