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Bill to privatize Pa.'s state liquor sales debated

Mark Scolforo, Associated Press

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) -- The Pennsylvania House is debating a bill that would replace hundreds of state-owned liquor stores with sales through private businesses, an important step that would put the issue before the state Senate.

The liquor privatization debate began Thursday afternoon with Liquor Control Chairman John Taylor saying the goal was to "fundamentally change how alcohol is bought and sold in Pennsylvania."

Earlier in the day, Senate Republican Leader Dominic Pileggi said his focus is on improving "selection, price and convenience," and that the House bill was likely to undergo revisions in the Senate.

Gov. Tom Corbett supports liquor privatization, and has said he wants to spend the hundreds of millions of dollars it would generate to improve public education. The House proposal does not specify how the proceeds would be used.