Jun. 30, 2015

HARRISBURG – Following a vote in favor of the measure today, Rep. Jim Christiana (R-Beaver/Washington) released the following statement on the passage of House Bill 466, a measure to end the state monopoly of liquor sales:

“We took a historic first step toward moving Pennsylvania into the 21st century and allowing the private sector to handle the sale of wine and spirits. I voted for House Bill 466, because the bottom line is government should not be in the booze business, and the people of Pennsylvania are loud and clear about their support for dismantling this dysfunctional monopoly.

“The House and Senate today did the responsible thing and voted to divest the state-run liquor monopoly. We are only one of two states still stuck in this Prohibition-era mindset. Not once have I heard someone come back from an out-of-state visit and say ‘Wow, our state store system is the best.’ Pennsylvania consumers continue to demand improved selection, lower prices and increased competition in the purchase of their wine and spirits, and the bill we sent to the governor’s desk today accomplishes those goals.

“We heard that if we divest the state liquor store system, we will lose revenue. The fact is, as sales and the number of establishments increase, our revenue will increase. Not to mention, the government-run system does not pay corporate taxes. If we give this business to beer distributors and other private sector entrepreneurs, almost all the revenue will generate business taxes. If the governor and Democrats are serious about raising revenue to fund our schools, then why would they vote against a plan to bring in millions more to the state? We should never ask the people of Pennsylvania to pay a single dime in higher taxes, unless we’ve first exhausted every option for raising revenue.

“Our citizens’ tax dollars should be used for regulating the distribution of alcohol and cracking down on those who misuse it—not on stocking shelves and developing advertisement campaigns to promote its use.”

House Bill 466 now heads to the governor’s desk.

Representative Jim Christiana
15th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Abbey Haslam
RepChristiana.com / Facebook.com/RepJimChristiana