Monday, April 1, 2019

PLCB - 85 Years to Get It Moving in the Right Direction and They Still Fail

Those of us who have put up with the restricted system of alcohol access in Pennsylvania would expect to see some results from the 85 years of the state's social experiment. The results are in, but no one's talking about them (except us), because the PLCB fails miserably. Using data from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, Newsweek ranked the states by their alcohol use.

So far it ain't working.  Look at the states on our border:

1. New York - Lower consumption than Pennsylvania
2. New Jersey  - Lower consumption than Pennsylvania
3. Ohio - Lower consumption than Pennsylvania
4. West Virginia - Lower consumption than Pennsylvania
5. Maryland - Lower consumption than Pennsylvania
If you don't succeed, quit after failing 80+ times.

Only Delaware has a higher consumption rate than Pennsylvania! But that's not really fair, because these rates are based on sales, not actually tallying people's drinks, and we know that a significant portion of sales in Delaware are from Pennsylvania residents in search of better prices, selection, and service. Those superstores on the border with Pennsylvania aren't there at random.

Is this the PLCB's fault? It has to be: there is no alcohol that isn't under their control. They are responsible for how beer is sold, they just don't do it directly, exactly the same as the alcohol regulators in other states work. Even their report on underage binge drinking shows they aren't doing what they are supposed to be doing. Pennsylvania's rate is worse than the national average, and not getting any better.
The State Stores are never checked for underage sales - yea!
Maybe the DUI and DUI fatalities make up for it.  No, you don't want to go there. You'll just be disappointed again; more proof that the Pennsylvania system isn't working.

If they're not "controlling" drinking, what is the PLCB doing? Surprise! They are a jobs program ingrained deep into state government, protected by politicians dependent on union money and votes. It has nothing to do anymore with protecting the public, nothing to do with enforcement of the border (what, 3 arrests last year? Wow...), nothing to do with service, and certainly nothing to do with treating the public fairly.

No, the only thing the PLCB is interested in is squeezing the citizens for more money. Prices increase when better deals are brokered, in the name of "variable pricing," which was sold to us as a way to lower prices of popular brands. No! It's a way to make more money, but not for the State, it's to cover their ever-increasing operations costs!  What other business decreases their number of stores by 25%...yet has more employees?

They don't even know their own name! Are they Wine & Spirits Shoppes? Pennsylvania Wine & Spirits ? Fine Wine & Good Spirits? We paid $3 million for the Fine & Good, you'd think they would want to use that everywhere. Might as well have saved that money -- our money -- and stuck with what most people call them even without a sign - State Stores.

PLCB Sales
PLCB Liabilities
The people in charge have no experience in the business. Prices are raised arbitrarily -- everything is done arbitrarily! -- and customer service is unimportant, because they have no legal competition. They've had record sales almost every year, but they're deeper in debt than anytime in their history...and it doesn't matter, because in the end, the taxpayers are really the ones responsible for that debt.

We, the citizens, deserve better. We are not safer, we are not better served, and we are not satisfied.


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