HARRISBURG, Pa (CBS) – The state House Liquor Control Committee has opened a series of hearings on a bill that would dismantle Pennsylvania’s state store system.

The sponsor of the liquor privatization bill is the majority leader of the House and he was the main witness at the hearing. But some of his fellow Republicans on the committee, such as Scott Petri of Bucks County, asked some of the most pointed questions about the plan.

“How do you unwind a system that you have without hurting people? Whether they’re employees, or whether they’re businesses?”

Petri was cheered by dozens of members of a union representing state store workers who turned out for the hearing. Majority Leader Mike Turzai says he believes his bill will make things better for the people of Pennsylvania.

“We’ve got to move into the 21st century and you’ve got to modernize. And we’re trying to do the best we can, in our proposal, in balancing competing interests.”

The chairman of the House Liquor Control Committee says there will be several more hearings to explore the possible impacts of the privatization proposal.

Reported by Tony Romeo, KYW Newsradio 1060

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