Posted on June 26, 2015 in Miscellaneous
Information from selected states on the debate regarding the privatization of alcohol and beverage control (ABC) operations follows. One of the major areas of discussion when states consider privatizing their monopoly of the sale of alcohol is the potential public health and safety implications of the change. A number of studies have been conducted on this topic, including the following:
Virginia is one such state and when then Governor Bob McDonnell floated the proposal after his election in 2009, George Mason University carried out the following study.
The study's conclusions indicate that "government-spirits monopolies do not generate the health benefits that their proponents trumpet. The plain fact seems to be that alcohol-related problems are unrelated to whether or not a state government prevents private, competitive businesses from selling spirits to the general public." Also, in Virginia, in January 2015, Senator Ryan McDougle sponsored SB 1032 in an effort, in his words, to "allow ABC to operate like a business as opposed to a government agency." Similarly, in the Virginia House, Delegate Dave Albo, proposed HB 1776 with the goal of replacing ABC with the authority to operate outside of government authority.
North Carolina is another Southern state that has grappled with the option of privatizing their ABC operations. The North Carolina Institute for Constitutional Law released a detailed report entitled North Carolina's ABC System Needs Modernization. In addition, North Carolina's Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Commission released its 2014 annual report recently. Also, of relevance in this connection is an interview with the chair of the NC ABC Commission, recently appointed by Governor Pat McCrory.
Pennsylvania also considered privatizing their ABC operations and reviewed the following study. An argument often is made for state control as a means of achieving some desired social outcome, i.e., reducing alcohol consumption, underage drinking, and alcohol-related traffic deaths by controlling wholesale and retail alcohol markets. However, this comprehensive, 48-state study concluded that there was no link between market controls and social goals.
Many states follow the three-tiered system of alcohol distribution with the three tiers comprising producers, distributors, and retailers. In its simplest form, the three-tiered system requires that producers sell their products to only wholesale distributors who, in turn, can then sell to retailers, and only retailers may sell to consumers. Producers include brewers, wine makers, distillers and importers. Details of this three-tiered system from around the United States follow:
Posted on June 22, 2015 in
The National Federation of Independent Businesses is a collection of 350,000 small and independent business owners that came together to promote and protect the right to own, operate and expand their businesses. Here is a compendium on the workers' compensation laws by state. Worker's compensation insurance requirements for employers vary from state to state. Information on what these insurance requirements are for the specific state is critical for protecting businesses, particularly small-business owners. While some states never require worker's compensation insurance, some always require it, and for others, whether it is required depends on the number of employees at the business. This list of resources provides details on the status of all 50 states.
Pro Publica is a New York-based independent, non-profit newsroom that produces investigative journalism in the public interest. They have compiled several projects related to worker's compensation trends in the states and information on this research is available here and here.
Business Insurance Magazine is an industry publication that presents news and information for executives concerned about risk and the impact on their business. In the March 2015 issue, the publication included an article entitled "States consider workers compensation reform" highlighting recent workers' compensation trends in the states, which can be found here.
The following information and links provide a sampling of initiatives launched by a number of states across the country.
Illinois - Debate on Worker's Comp Reform Begins in Illinois