The Steering Committee of the Green Party of Pennsylvania (GPPA), www.gppa.org, has taken a firm position against privatization of PA Wine and Spirit Shops. Chair of the Green Party, I.K. Samways (Allegheny County) organized this poll and said in response to the outcome, "The Green Party is leading the opposition to Republican control of our Commonwealth, and I am very pleased that the Green Party will stand firmly against this anti-union legislation."
On July 13, the Pennsylvania House of Representatives began consideration of House Bill (HB) 11, which will privatize the wholesale and retail operations of the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (PLCB). This legislation will end PLCB's payment of annual profits into the State's Treasury. It will also terminate more than 3,000 jobs for workers who make union wages and receive middle-class benefits.
In response, the Green Party Steering Committee voted in favor of a resolution opposing HB 11. Vivek Ananthan, treasurer of GPPA and chair of the Green Party of Philadelphia, said, "Privatization at every level has been a failure in this country. Why would privatization of liquor stores to be an exception? Rampant capitalism is the cause of our Himalayan-like deficit."
"I believe that the PA Wine and Spirit Shops do a very good job of keeping alcohol away from underage drinkers," said Steve Baker, chair of the Green Party of York County.
"Privatization is just another word for union busting," offered Carl Romanelli, former Green Party U.S. Senate candidate and current GPPA steering committee member from Scranton. "We in the Green Party oppose this bill as bad for workers and a disaster for the Pennsylvania Treasury. HB 11 will put more of a tax burden on consumers and workers, while replacing living wages with at or near minimum-wage positions. Let it be known that Greens are vocal in our opposition to this bill, and we stand with Pennsylvania's union employees."
For more information about the Green Party, please contact 1- 888-PA1-GREEN.