It seems the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, the state’s wine and liquor monopoly, is sending their employees to charm school:
Added bonus, Heyl finds in this week’s column that customer complaints have actually increased since the LCB sent its employees to Charm School, going from one complaint in every 324,000 liquor purchases, to one complaint in every 288,000 liquor purchases.
Asked for an explanation, Joe Conti, the liquor board’s CEO, didn’t really give one.
“Eighty to 100 complaints is really so anecdotal that I don’t know that we’d use those as a barometer” of the [charm school] program’s success, he said. Contialso told Heyl that the courtesy training was part of an overall strategy “to provide our patrons with a superlative shopping experience … the (LCB) board felt strongly that we had to do this.”
Fair enough. But if you’re going to spend $173k in public funds, you usually have the right to demand that things get better. Or ask for your money back. If the LCB is serious about running itself as a business, it might want to start acting like one.
Recently a patron at our local LCB store became so irate, he threw a bottle through the window. I wonder if that was registered as a complaint? I grow increasingly tired of having to trek over to New Jersey to get any reasonable wine selection, or buy real top shelf liquor. I can’t believe we’ve been unable to create a constituency for privatizing the LCB in Pennsylvania.