Wednesday, March 11, 2009


The glass is half empty! The glass of wine anyway.

Governor Paterson has proposed in his budget, a provision that would allow wine to be sold in grocery, drug and convenience stores
across New York State. He's looking for that one time shot of revenue from the tidal wave of liquor licenses from all those stores to help with this year's financial shortfalls.

What he doesn't understand is that the traditional liquor stores, even if you disagree with alcohol consumption, tends to be small, family owned, establishments in our struggling business districts. Districts we are scrambling to support in these tough times.
[Madden's Spirits on Rondout pictured left]

Imagine a Big Box store having a fine Merlot. Yeah right. now imagine the young, untrained cashiers at WalMart responsible for keeping the goods out of the wrong hands on a Saturday night. It's not going to happen!

What's better; you're expecting someone in the produce section to help you pick the right wine to go with your Duck?

This issue came up at this months County Legislative meeting, where the memorializing resolution to dissuade Paterson from implementing this crazy scheme, got a unanimous vote.

Liquor and wine store owners across New York State have united against this proposition. For a one time $100 million shot in revenue for the state in the first two years, thousands of jobs would be lost and businesses would close as liquor stores became unable to compete with big chain grocery stores.

Gary Bisch
off of Saugerties went into a dissertation on this ill-conceived budget proposal, imagining a colorful exchange between he and an employee at Sam's Club and asking about the selection. Jon Decker of Lloyd chimed in saying what selection? It would be all Chinese like everything else in that store.

The place broke out into laughter.

Humor aside, Governor Paterson's attempt to balance this years budget with these thinly veiled gimmicks have got to be an embarrassment to those who saw so much potential in his accidental leadership.

The County may only have authority to send Dave their plea to rethink this one, but at least they are showing us they understand the threat to small business.


Anonymous said...

Well you have to make room for your stock of drug paraphernalia! Who else is positioned so perfectly for sales of recreational drugs? The pharmacies can't handle it. With the inevitable legalization of drugs, hard liquor falls into the same category as cocaine and heroin. Maybe you'll need to bone up on how long you need to wait after that duck before snorting.

NYSABCLicense said...

Patterson should dump the Chairman of the Liquor Authority. Check the latest news at

Anonymous said...

Well if anyone knows about booze,, it is Jon Decker !!!

Anonymous said...

Now, I'm expecting this chain of events to indicate that we will definitely have a republican AND democratic primary for Governor next year. I think Paterson is toast.

Anonymous said...

Yes, this proposal is a beaut as you say. Paterson seems to have a knack for coming up with boners. He can perhaps claim to be legally blind but this did not cause his stupid proposals. Does he want a Coke and Whiskey to drink tonight? LOL
In other news, I have as a result of today's headline about DPW, dropped my previous policy regarding dealing with the Freeman. What it chooses to do with the insolent email exchange of the Mayor and Gorsline to me last week is of course its business, but the Times of Kingston is obviously run by someone who is intimidated and/or enthralled by this administration, and government by intimidation is for the old Soviet System(although that is basically how things are run in Kingston).

Carl said...

Mike, I'm not sure I agree with this assessment. New Jersey has long allowed supermarkets and drugs stores to sell wine and liquor, and there are still thriving package stores (which can sell beer, something liquor stores in NY cannot do) in most towns.

I'm not sure of the formula, but my suspicion is Wal-Mart will beg off wine sales except for the mass consumption brands, while liquor stores will still have a large market for quality brands, plus the hard stuff.

And beer. Any legislation like this should include beer sales.