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Rep. Mike Turzai Promotes Governor's Plan to Privatize Liquor Stores

The House majority leader is a longtime proponent of selling off state Wine & Spirits stores.

House Majority Leader Mike Turzai, R-Bradford Woods, appeared alongside Gov. Tom Corbett this week to push for the privatization of state liquor stores.

Corbett on Wednesday announced his plan to privatize the liquor system in Pennsylvania and committed $1 billion in proceeds from the process to education funding.

Turzai proposed legislation in 2011 to privatize wholesale and retail liquor distribution and sell off Pennsylvania's state stores. 

He has repeatedly said government should not be in the business of selling wine and liquor or promoting alcohol use.

“Privatizing wine and liquor will eliminate the 75-year-old state monopoly on liquor sales by auctioning retail licenses to the private sector and investing $1 billion of the proceeds in public education," Turzai said in newsletter, which was published Friday.

 “The governor’s plan includes auctioning 1,200 licenses for retail sales of wine and spirits by county, 800 of which would be for larger stores and 400 for smaller stores. It’s time Pennsylvania moves into the 21st century by transitioning Pennsylvania to what every state around us has: the ability to buy wine, spirits and beer in more convenient locations."

Pennsylvania and Utah are the only states in the U.S. with state-controlled liquor systems.

What do you think? Should the state sell off the Wine & Spirits stores to the private sector? Tell us in the comments section below.

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