Thursday, August 20, 2015

Citizens urge lawmakers to accept Convenience 2016 plan

Commonwealth citizens
 — we, the people forced to shop at State Stores —
 issued the following statement today.

The Citizens urge lawmakers to pass a consumer convenience bill to normalize liquor sales in the Commonwealth. The PLCB issued their "Convenience 2020" scheme three years ago and we have fewer stores and fewer "stores in a store" than we did at the start of their plan. It is time to put into effect a Convenience 2016 plan that will close all the state stores by the end of 2016 and open up the freedom to sell wine and liquor to anyone who wishes to purchase a license and meets current on-premise qualifications.

We Citizens have been treated like children for far too long. It is not up to the state to limit commerce between individuals, corporations and other states in pursuit of the false claim of safety. We are not safer, as any reading of national statistics will show. Even the PLCB reports higher than average underage drinking in the state.

We Citizens want the increase in jobs privatization has proven to bring. We want the decision of which products will be stocked to be made using our dollars as votes and not have a nameless, faceless bureaucrat (who certainly isn't an expert by any industry standards) decide for the entire state. We want the greater convenience that privatization will bring, not some idiot's dream 80 years in the making, but one proven to work: the free market.

If the state thinks that having liquor in grocery stores is a good idea, which apparently they do, then allow grocery stores to sell liquor. Problem solved.

If the state thinks access should be more convenient which again, they apparently do, make more licenses available and stop competing with private business. Another problem solved.

If the state thinks that there should be greater selection, that problem will be solved by any number of superstores waiting to enter the market, or entrepreneurs who want to offer the largest selection possible to win your business. We'll soon see stores with more items on the shelf then the entire state stocks now.

If the state wants revenue, then the free market will give proven increases in sales, which in turn results in more taxes collected. A free market will reduce border bleed with increased convenience and pricing competition, increasing collected taxes even more.

If the state wants to treat their citizens like rational adults that don't need to be told what, where, and how much they are allowed to purchase of a legal product, they will pass this plan.

We are not safer, we are not better served, and we are not satisfied. End false modernization, end false promises, end the state store system. Convenience 2016!

The Citizens represent most of the 12 million people in the Commonwealth who work in the southeast, northeast and central, western and all parts of  Pennsylvania in supermarkets, drug stores, food processing plants, government services, manufacturing facilities, nursing homes, professional offices, and all businesses, except Pennsylvania's "Fine" Wine and "Good" Spirits Stores.


Anonymous said...

Can we at least expect all state stores to get the "new" (2010) makeover by 2020?

Albert Brooks said...

No, the PLCB has already said that not all stores will be done, only about half.

Anonymous said...

And then there will be a new chairman along with new board members that will decide the FWGS is dated and they will adopt another store logo/concept. This will only add to the number designs and logos and will only add to the confusion.

Albert Brooks said...

You can always look on the positive side that there won't be any state stores to rename for the new chairman.

Anonymous said...

If any particular town in Pennsylvania is an example of how the PLCB is a tragedy, look no further than Newtown Square. There are three state stores there (which is ridiculous for such a small town; even two would be ridiculous) and all three are examples of very poor planning by the PLCB and landlords. What's wrong with each of them? One is tucked way behind a very popular shopping center (even though it originally had a prime spot in the shopping center, back in the old counter store days), another is inside the Acme supermarket in that same shopping center (but is ridiculously small, and other than its upscale appearance is no improvement over the store in back), and the third has a rather sad history. It opened in 2007 to replace a store from 1995 that was conveniently right next to a Genuardi's supermarket. After the Happy Harry's drugstore next to the Genuardi's closed, Staples paid the state store to move around the corner to a former EB Games, so that Staples could have both the Happy Harry's and old state store spaces. But then Staples closed anyway and so did Genuardi's, which was empty three years. The three years without a grocery anchor hurt sales at the state store. Giant now is there but it's a small, pitiful Giant.

Albert Brooks said...

I'm going to assume this is Gino since nobody else knows as much about real estate history as you do for that area.

Newtown Square may list 3 stores but the one at 4839 West Chester Pike is really in Edgemont by about 100 yards. I'm sure that would be the PLCB excuse. Of course, Edgemont only has 3300 people and I know of quite a few towns with more that don't have a store.

Anonymous said...

When did you find out about the municipality that this particular store sits in? Do you know all the municipalities of PLCB stores?

Years ago, when the PLCB first launched a website, they included both the mailing address and municipality for each store. That feature no longer exists, unfortunately.

Lew Bryson said...

Yeah it does. Go here:

Albert Brooks said...

While it would be nice to claim eidetic memory - I looked at a map so in a way I do know the municipalities of PLCB stores.