PA Senate Bill Seeks to Lessen Restrictions on Retail Beer Sales

This week’s upcoming show has Rob, Jesse, and I debating the pros and cons of the recent decision by Giant Eagle Stores to allow beer sales at one of its convenient store locations. It appears that whatever concerns various parties have with this move, the discussion to loosen beer and wine sales in Pennsylvania is still on the table.

Republicans in the state senate have brought up another bill that they are trying to pass. They were hoping to vote on it yesterday, but pushed it back until further notice.  It allows for retail sales of beer and wine in addition to keeping the state store structure in place to sell wine and liquor. The bill seeks to compromise with hard liners by giving more flexibility to state stores, including money saving logistics changes and adding Sunday sales,  in order for them to compete with sales from retail stores. Democrats fear that a bill allowing retail sales will diminish state store sales and destroying a key source of revenue for the commonwealth.

The bill would require 26 votes to pass in the senate, which means that it would need nearly unanimous support from the senate Republicans. The Republicans hold a small majority.