Should PA supermarkets sell beer?

Should PA supermarkets sell beer?

"The Wegmans supermarket chain met all of the legal requirements to received a license to sell beer, said Liquor Control Board Chairman P.J. Stapleton in a hearing Wednesday before the House Appropriations Committee," reports "The board’s decision to grant licenses to the grocery stores had been challenged, but a unanimous ruling from the Commonwealth Court earlier this week approved the liquor board’s decision, which would give consumers another option beyond the state’s traditional beer distributors.

"In response to a question from Minority Chairman Mario Civera, R-Delaware, Stapleton said the store’s application “complied with all aspects of the liquor code"... The liquor board is looking for ways to expand such locations, which Stapleton said provide “a nice convenience for consumers.”

Separately: "Depressing economic conditions seem to be driving more Pennsylvanians to drink," writes the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette here.  "Through Dec. 31, the halfway point of fiscal 2008-09, state store sales were $1.02 billion. If the strong sales continue until June 30, they would be $2.04 billion for the full year," up from $1.8 billion last year, $1.7 billion the year before, even tho the state closed 20 stores last year (there are now 620). The state apparently doesn't track beer sales.