Knowles’ Bill Puts Taxpayers Above Special Interests

Liquor store union president Wendell Young appears to be on a campaign to discredit any lawmaker that favors removing the state’s monopoly stranglehold over liquor sales. You can find my rebuttal to Young’s attack on Sen. Pat Browne here. My letter to the Republican Herald below, fact-checking Young’s latest fabrications, is below:

The “Liquor store plan uses faulty math” letter attacking Rep. Jerry Knowles for supporting the removal of government from booze sales couldn’t come from a less reliable source—liquor store union boss Wendell Young.

Mr. Young is heavily motivated to keep the status quo in Pennsylvania’s monopoly of wine and liquor sales that guarantees hefty union dues to sustain his nearly $300,000 annual pay

The claim that the sales of the state liquor stores would only generate $312.5 million is utter nonsense.  Mr. Young’s own faulty math fails to mention that privatization includes the state liquor stores, the distribution of wine and liquor to bars and restaurants (which is currently government-run), and selling off the PLCB’s current inventory – the latter alone is worth more than $300 million.

The state-run liquor stores are not a cash cow for taxpayers.  More than 80 percent of the “$500 million” in revenue comes from taxes on consumers that would continue under privatization.  Plus, privately owned liquor stores pay additional taxes, like the corporate income tax, that state stores are exempt from.

Mr. Young is either dishonest or clueless about privatization.

By proposing to put the money generated by the sales of the state liquor stores towards fixing Pennsylvania roads, Rep. Knowles puts taxpayers above special interests.

To learn more about liquor store privatization, check out