Peter Franchot conference

Comptroller Franchot Pushes for End of Montgomery County Monopoly on Alcohol Sales (PHOTO)

Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot held a news conference on Tuesday in Silver Spring to announce the results of a report released by the Bureau of Revenue Estimates. The study is an economic impact analysis of private sector competition for alcohol sales in Montgomery County.

Comptroller Franchot announced the results of the report to the media and a crowd of small business owners and entrepreneurs at Jackie’s Restaurant on Georgia Avenue.  According to the report, if private sector companies were allowed to sell and distribute alcohol in Montgomery County, it would result in an estimated $193.7 million in new economic activity and 1,364 jobs created by 2020. Currently, wholesale purchases of alcohol in Montgomery County can only be made by the Department of Liquor Control (DLC).  Peter Franchot News Conference

Comptroller Franchot said, “This report shows what county consumers and small businesses have been saying. It’s long overdue to end this prohibition era system. We should have left it back in the era of prohibition so we can bring this desperately needed economic activity back into our communities and create quality jobs…Keeping the current system is really bad for the county’s economy.”

Maryland Delegate Bill Frick has sponsored legislation to allow a vote to end Montgomery County’s monopoly on alcohol sales.

“This is a priority for our chambers of commerce. It’s something that everybody in the state has a stake in because it is holding back our private sector and holding back our sales tax revenues. I think there’s going to be a lot of support for it hopefully with our delegation and a majority of both houses during the general assembly,” said Frick.

Jackie Greenbaum owner of Jackie’s said she supports ending the monopoly because it would help grow her business.

“It would make our business much easier to operate. One of the things we spend a lot of time on is maintaining a watch on our inventory but we also have to constantly re-print our wine and beer lists because things run out of stock and we can’t get them because things aren’t delivered when they were supposed to be. We could expand our wine and beer list and generally give a better experience here at Jackie’s,” said Greenbaum.

Both Delegate Frick and Comptroller Franchot agree that the next steps are to engage Montgomery County residents,business owners and officials to push for an end to the County’s monopoly on alcohol sales.

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Sonya Burke

About Sonya Burke

Sonya Burke is the Multimedia Manager at Montgomery Community Media (MCM). You can email story ideas at sburke@mymcmedia.org or reach her on Twitter @SonyaNBurke.

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