Department of Liquor Control Issues Apology Following Holiday Delivery Problems (PHOTO)
The letter signed by Director George Griffin states that human error resulted in the consolidation of five files into a single file. This created a single delivery schedule, which resulted in logistic problems and effected deliveries on Dec. 23, 24, 28, and 29.
According to the letter, the issue was fixed on Dec. 29th and normal schedules were resumed; “Our staff has been instructed on how the error occurred and how to avoid it in the future so that this does not happen again.”
This latest incident added more fuel to the ongoing debate over ending the County’s liquor control laws. Maryland State Delegate Bill Frick has introduced legislation that would allow voters to decide in a referendum if the County’s liquor monopoly should be maintained. Montgomery County Councilmember Roger Berliner, a supporter of Frick’s legislation posted a Facebook post in response to the delivery mishap.
The County Public Information Office has distributed fliers to Montgomery County wine and liquor stores, which state; “Local liquor control doesn’t cost taxpayer’s a single dime and contributes an average $30 million every year to the County’s general fund-helping us fund schools, transportation, help for the vulnerable in our midst and more.”
Adam Pagnucco, who formed the “End the Monopoly” group, sent a letter to Montgomery County attorney Marc Hansen, to comment on whether or not the flier is considered political speech and if “End the Monopoly” can also distribute its own fliers.
County liquor stores are now distributing political propaganda to customers, presumably financed with public money.
County spokesperson Patrick Lacefield told MyMCMedia that the flier is informing residents about County policy and that the information provided is factual not political.
Lacefield also said that fliers distributed by private groups at Montgomery County wine and liquor stores would be removed, regardless of which side of the debate the material supports, due to County policy, unless approved by the County forum.
“These are County facilities, which are places for distributing County policies not private polices. This is government speech,” Lacefield said.