Sunday, February 14, 2016

Is alcohol more expensive in Pa.?

A Harrisburg Patriot-News survey definitively concludes: Sometimes!

Is alcohol more expensive in Pa.?

APRIL SAUL / Staff Photographer

A Harrisburg Patriot-News survey definitively concludes: Sometimes!

It seems that bulk buying enables the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board to offer cheap products more cheaply, but our tax structure causes high-end products to be more expensive.

Price competitiveness is just one of several questions that will be at issue this summer when privatizing the state’s liquor stores (probably) becomes a hot topic. There’s also the question of choice, the question of service and the question of jobs.

We continue to think it’s ridiculous that the state runs the liquor stores in Pennsylvania, but we also think there are legitimate questions to be asked about how we get from here (state-owned liquor stores) to there (private booze paradise). Whether or not taxpayers should own a booze monopoly, the fact is that we do, and if that asset is going to be dismantled and sold off it should be done for the widest possible benefit.

For review: Our LCB drinking game.

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Every year, city government spends slightly more than $4 billion. Where does all that money come from? More importantly, where does it go? Are we getting the most bang for our tax buck? “It's Our Money” is a joint project between Philadelphia Daily News and WHYY, funded by the William Penn Foundation, designed to answer these questions.

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