Saturday, February 10, 2007

Citizen: Alcohol industry runs Texas legislature

AUSTIN — A citizen member of the state's Sunset Advisory Commission wants the Legislature to dismantle what he calls the "corrupt system" of alcoholic beverage regulation that he says protects wholesale distributors at the expense of retailers and consumers, and blocks any effort to raise taxes on liquor.

Austin attorney Howard Wolf (photo), in a scathing position paper, criticized the relationships among lawmakers, wholesale distributors and the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission.

Wolf, who also served on the Tax Reform Commission, said that the alcoholic beverage industry has a controlling influence with the Legislature, and has blocked any moves to increase the tax on liquor, which has not been raised since 1984. Source.

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