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Chapter 10
The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board


Legislative History

With the repeal of national prohibition in 1933, through the 21st amendment to the U.S. Constitution, the regulation of beverage alcohol reverted to the individual states. The failure of prohibition had shown that the nation was too large and too diverse to accept the single standard of sobriety - especially one of total abstinence. Only four states voted to remain dry, at least for a time. Twenty-nine states chose to resume the legal sale of alcohol beverages through licensed private sellers and are known as License States. Seventeen (later eighteen) opted to control the sale of alcohol beverages through state agencies. These are known as Control States.

Pennsylvania became a Control State. The enabling legislation refers to the “…protection of the public welfare, health, peace and morals of the people of the Commonwealth…” as a purpose of the act establishing the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (PLCB). (Section 1-104 of the Liquor Code [47 P.S. § 1-104]) There are similar statements in many other state Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC) legislation mandates.


The mission of the PLCB is:

Alcohol Education Program

Since it was founded in 1934, the PLCB has discouraged alcohol abuse through responsible service in its Wine and Spirits Shoppes and through its regulatory and licensing practices. During the late 1980s and early 1990s, the PLCB began actively working with schools, licensees, prevention professionals and others to provide alcohol education programs and materials.

In 1994, the PLCB formalized its commitment to preventing alcohol abuse by establishing the Bureau of Alcohol Education. The Bureau is dedicated to the prevention of alcohol abuse and the elimination of underage drinking. The mission of the Bureau of Alcohol Education is to:

The Governor and many state agencies have recognized the PLCB as a leader in preventing alcohol-related problems within Pennsylvania. The PLCB has received national recognition as a leader and model Alcohol Beverage Control agency in education and prevention. Local community groups, colleges, youth, law enforcement and others look to the PLCB for technical assistance and resources. The resources and assistance provided by the PLCB have served as a catalyst, bringing together many organizations that want to stop alcohol-related problems. The PLCB has also gained a reputation as an agency that bases its programs on principles and techniques that have been proven to be effective through scientific research.

Efforts in education, research and community assistance have been possible because the PLCB appropriates part of its budget to alcohol education. Since the Bureau of Alcohol Education was established in 1994, the PLCB has greatly increased its involvement in the prevention of alcohol-related problems, with special emphasis on underage drinking and dangerous college drinking. Some of the current initiatives of the PLCB are briefly listed below.

A Power Point presentation overview of PLCB projects is accompanying this manual in the form of a CD-ROM. (See CD-ROM – Appendix X)

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