Bucks lawmaker crafting new plan for Pa. liquor sales

    The chairman of a key state Senate committee plans to get to work on his own proposal to open up the sale of alcohol in Pennsylvania.

    Now that his panel has finished the trio of hearings on liquor privatization, Sen. Chuck McIlhinney, R-Bucks, says he’ll look to craft a plan much simpler than the one passed in the House.

    He wants to find a way to enhance existing retail licenses to allow beer distributors to sell different quantities, including six-packs, and give licensed grocery stores more products.

    He said all he knows for sure is that it will allow Pennsylvanians to buy wine, liquor, and beer in more places.

    “Trying to open up the wine and spirits and beer and the package sizes of the beer into newer, more convenient outlets, but utilizing the existing system, without adding new licenses,” he said.

    McIlhinney says his bill will allow for phasing out state wine and spirits stores, but adds he’s not sure the commonwealth’s wholesale system is valuable enough to sell off yet.

    The House has passed a liquor privatization bill that has been fought tooth and nail by state store workers and beer distributors.

    It also has little support in the Senate.

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