Thursday, April 17, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Bad Timing: "Wine Kiosks" Offline As LCB Fate Considered

File this under bad timing: The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board just announced that it is taking its 30 self-service "wine kiosks" off-line at 9 p.m. tonight to deal with service problems. This comes as Gov.-elect Tom Corbett is pushing to sell off the state-controlled system to sell wine and alcohol.

Bad Timing: "Wine Kiosks" Offline As LCB Fate Considered

File this under bad timing:  The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board just announced that it is taking its 30 self-service "wine kiosks" off-line at 9 p.m. tonight to deal with service problems.  This comes as Gov.-elect Tom Corbett is pushing to sell off the state-controlled system to sell wine and alcohol.

Here's what LCB Chairman Patrick J. "PJ" Stapleton had to say, via a news release just sent out by e-mail: "While customer satisfaction with the six-month old kiosk program remains high, recent problems -- such as product not dispensing -- require us to take immediate action while we wait for the manufacturer to correct all of the identified issues. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause our customers and supermarket partners, but felt this temporary closure was critical to the future success of the program."

The kiosks, along with wine boutique stores, were put into play by the LCB in a continuing effort to move away from the old "state store" mentality that seemed designed to prevent consumers from finding the beverages they wanted to buy.  You can read the LCB's news release after the jump.

News for Immediate Release

Dec. 21, 2010

Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board to Temporarily Close Pronto Wine Kiosks

Harrisburg - In an effort to maintain the highest levels of customer service, the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (PLCB) will temporarily close the Pronto Wine Kiosks statewide to address mechanical and technological issues.

"While customer satisfaction with the six-month old kiosk program remains high, recent problems -- such as product not dispensing -- require us to take immediate action while we wait for the manufacturer to correct all of the identified issues," said Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board Chairman Patrick J. "PJ" Stapleton. "We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause our customers and supermarket partners, but felt this temporary closure was critical to the future success of the program."

The kiosks, currently in 30 supermarkets across the state, will be taken offline at 9 p.m. tonight. Kiosk locations include some Giant(r) Food Store, Wegmans Food Market, Giant Eagle, The Fresh Grocer and Shop 'n Save stores.

Simple Brands, the developer of the kiosks, will be working on each machine to correct any identified issues. Once all of the kiosks have been fixed and thoroughly tested, the PLCB, along with its supermarket partners and Simple Brands will work to reopen the kiosks to once again provide convenience and value to customers statewide.

"We thank our customers and our supermarket partners for their patience and understanding as we work through these technological issues and look forward to reopening the kiosks in early 2011," Stapleton said.

Stapleton reminded customers that they can find their nearest Wine & Spirits store by visiting www.lcb.state.pa.us<http://www.lcb.state.pa.us>, choosing the link "For Consumers," and then, "Find Store." All stores will close at 6 p.m. on Christmas Eve and at 8 p.m. on New Year's Eve.
 

About this blog
Chris Brennan, a native Philadelphian and graduate of Temple University, joined the Daily News in 1999. He has written about SEPTA, the Philadelphia School District, the legalization of casino gambling, state government, the mayor, the governor, City Council and political campaigns. E-mail tips to brennac@phillynews.com
 Follow Chris on Twitter

Jenny DeHuff is a 2005 graduate of the University of Rhode Island, where she cut her teeth in journalism. A South Philly transplant from New England, she joined the Daily News City Hall Bureau in 2013. For the past several years, she has worked as an investigative reporter exposing corruption in suburban politics, covering sometimes ghastly criminal court cases and following the people’s money and how its spent. In addition to being a dogged news hound, she enjoys reading and writing about travel, animals, Irish whiskey and aviation. E-mail tips to dehuffj@phillynews.com
 Follow Jenny on Twitter.

Sean Collins Walsh is from Bucks County and went to Northwestern University. He joined the Daily News copy desk in 2012 and now covers the Nutter administration. Before that, he interned at papers including The New York Times, The Dallas Morning News and The Seattle Times. E-mail tips to walshSE@phillynews.com
 Follow Sean on Twitter

PhillyClout Team
Also on Philly.com
Stay Connected