Earlier this week, MBDA, working closely with a coalition of industry partners, defeated a fast-moving, last-minute amendment in the Pennsylvania Senate that would have eliminated the ability of grocery stores to exercise control of their alcohol sales by allowing them to occur at a register outside the licensed premises.
Current law, designed to discourage underage sales as well as purchases by those who are intoxicated, requires that all licensees – including grocery and convenience stores – can only sell alcoholic beverages through a register located inside the licensed premises. The amendment circulated would have created an exception for grocery and convenience stores.
The amendment would have (1) allowed R-Licensees (grocery stores) to sell takeout beer at any register in the store and (2) eliminate the current prohibition against gas and beer being sold at the same register.
The amendment was ultimately not offered after intense lobbying from MBDA members, our lobbying team and executive staff.
This instance is a prime example of the kind of last-minute amendments to an otherwise inconsequential bill that MBDA is watching out for to protect our business interests.
This fight is just beginning.