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PA House GOP Seeks To Rekindle Liquor Privatization Debate

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(credit: JOEL SAGET/AFP/Getty Images)

(credit: JOEL SAGET/AFP/Getty Images)

(Capitol dome, Harrisburg, Pa.   File photo) Tony Romeo
  Tony Romeo is Harrisburg bureau chief for KYW Newsradio...
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By Tony Romeo

HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) — In a sign that they aren’t giving up on liquor privatization, state House Republicans plan to push a bill that would decriminalize purchasing wine and liquor in other states and transporting it to Pennsylvania.

The bill is to be introduced by Philadelphia Republican John Taylor, who cites recent news stories about law enforcement action against a man who purchased premium wines out of state and brought them home to Pennsylvania. Decriminalization language was contained in a broader bill passed by the state House last year to privatize liquor sales in Pennsylvania — a bill that has languished in the state Senate since. And Steve Miskin, spokesman for the state House Republican majority leader, admits it’s an effort to jump start the stalled privatization effort.

“It’s another way to highlight the need for a total makeover of Pennsylvania’s liquor laws,” Miskin says.

But action on liquor privatization is considered a long shot at best in the relatively few days lawmakers will be in Harrisburg this fall before the end of the two-year legislative session.

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