Faced with anger, confusion and disbelief from beer-drinkers and the beer industry, Pennsylvania lawmakers are pressing for an explanation of recent State Police raids on bars and distributors, over allegedly unregistered brands.
The state Liquor Control Board posted a new list of legally registered brands yesterday, including several of the popular beers that were seized last week from three high-end city taprooms.
The liquor-enforcement arm of the State Police has quietly returned some of the confiscated brew to bar owners.
But both agencies continued to dodge questions on the armed raids against the three bars, and the chairman of the House Liquor Control Committee scheduled a hearing in Harrisburg next month to get answers.
"The way things were done, I wasn't happy with," said state Rep. Bob Donatucci, a South Philadelphia Democrat. "We've heard what everybody else has heard, one agency blaming the other, typical BS. . . . I can guarantee you, we're gonna straighten out the problem, one way or the other."
He said his committee and its Senate counterpart, the Senate Judiciary Committee, would hold a joint hearing on the raids April 13.
"We're scared," one bar owner told the Daily News. "I've instructed my staff to match every beer we get delivered with the PLCB's list of registered brands. If it's not on the list, we're not going to take delivery."More at the link.
Sources told the Daily News that several beer distributors in other parts of the state had been visited by State Police in search of unregistered beer.