We weren’t just joking when we said the LCB was digging its own grave with its wine kiosks. It turns out that Mike Turzai, the Pennsylvania state rep who’s leading the charge to dismantle the state’s booze board, has gotten his hands on a rather embarrassing communiqué that the agency’s evaluation committee penned way back in 2008 that essentially lays out everything that’s befallen the sad and very troubled experiment from its start last year. And that’s hardly the worst of it. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that not only did the agency’s own members recommend that the state not enter into a contract with the kiosks’ maker, the Conshohocken-based Simple Brands, but Turzai has also gotten hold of an email instructing LCB employees to turn in all copies of the report and delete electronic copies. Sheesh, can you say Kiosk-Gate?
And still it gets even worse. There’s accusations being directed at former Governor Ed Rendell alleging cronyism. Simple Brands principals reportedly generously gave to Rendell’s re-election campaign. Now it looks like all of this information will be used against the beleaguered booze bureau today in a public hearing aimed at vetting Turzai’s proposal to break up the LCB. Even more damaging will be testimony from a Wegmans manager, who is expected to explain why the grocery chain asked the LCB to get its kiosks out of its stores earlier this year.
Pa. Liquor Control Board was warned on wine kiosks [Post Gazette]
Earlier: The LCB Is Totally Digging Its Own Grave With Those Wine Kiosks