PA House Approves Liquor Privatization
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - A plan to phase out Pennsylvania's 600 state-operated liquor stores and raise millions in revenue by selling licenses to private businesses is on its way to the state Senate.
The measure passed the House on Thursday on a 105-to-90 vote after about seven hours of debate. It's a victory for members of the majority Republican caucus and their ally, Gov. Tom Corbett.
Democratic opponents are warning the privatization bill will put thousands of state store employees out of work, cost more and generate less revenue than supporters predict.
The proposal is likely to see changes in the Senate.
The 194-page bill would give existing beer distributors the priority in purchasing 1,200 licenses to sell wine and spirits.