The PA Republicans have been trying for years to get ride of the state-controlled wine and spirits stores, and it looks like they’re finally going to pull it off. What a great idea! Instead of people having to buy booze during store hours, they’ll be able to buy it anytime they want — and we can maybe even widen our lead as the worst drunk driving state in the tri-state area!
Thousands of state workers could lose jobs if Republicans successfully push the legislation, said a labor leader representing store clerks. The Liquor Control Board employs 5,000 people.
Wendell W. Young IV, president of the United Food and Commercial Workers’ wine and spirits council, said the privatization effort is absurd because if the LCB were a private company, the state typically would spend hundreds of millions of dollars to save up to 5,000 jobs. He points to the state’s action in February to spend $42 million — combined with private investment and company equity — to save 1,000 jobs at the Acker Philadelphia Shipyard.
Lou Matter, who manages a liquor store in the North Side, said he is unaware of any effort to assist employees in making the transition into the private sector.
“Is there some sort of plan in the works? Not that I’m aware of,” said Matter, 45, of Spring Garden.
Turzai’s bill offers tax credits for private employers that hire ex-state store employees, preferential hiring for them at state agencies, and vouchers for retraining, Miskin said.
Continue Reading »