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    Pa. Food Retailers Testify on Alcohol Sales Privatization

    Group offers improvements to state legislation

    The Pennsylvania Food Merchants Association (PFMA) submitted written testimony this week to the state Senate Law and Justice Committee, in regard to selling alcoholic beverages and alcohol sales privatization.

    Harrisburg-based PFMA wasn’t invited to testify at the May 13 committee hearing, but its members wanted to ensure that legislators were aware of the retail industry’s key points of concern relating to a bill now before the Senate.

    In the testimony, PFMA president and CEO David McCorkle spoke of the many points on which the organization and its members agree with HB 790, which passed the House because of the efforts of Majority Leader Mike Turzai and Chairman John Taylor of the Liquor Control Committee. PFMA’s testimony also put forward suggestions to improve the retail license structure, and security and best practices provisions, within the bill.

    “PFMA members know that HB 790 is a monumental step forward in providing choice, convenience and competitive prices for consumers,” noted McCorkle. “We commend the House and its leadership for sending a historic piece of legislation to the Senate, and we hope Pennsylvania’s senators will heed the call of consumers who want to see even more improvements to the bill.”

    “The testimony provided … to Chairman Chuck McIlhinney and the committee provides clear and concise ideas to make HB 790 an even better bill and gives consumers what they want, which is the ability to go to their local grocery and convenience store and buy their adult beverages in whatever quantity they choose,” added Alex Baloga, PFMA’s director of government relations.

    PFMA’s membership consists of more than 1,000 convenience stores, supermarkets, independent grocers, wholesalers and consumer product vendors. The association’s members operate more than 4,000 stores and employ more than 140,000 Pennsylvanians.
     

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