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Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board Reports Record Sales, Net Income in Fiscal Year 2017-18

09/12/2018

Contributions to state and local governments totaled $749.6 million

Harrisburg – The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (PLCB) today released unaudited financial results for fiscal year 2017-18 that reflect record retail sales and record net income.  Sales in the most recently completed fiscal year total $2.59 billion (including liquor and sales taxes), a $67.8 million or 2.7 percent increase over the prior year and previous retail sales record. The PLCB has achieved year-over-year sales growth each year for at least the past two decades.

Net income for the year totaled a record $158.2 million, $53.4 million or 50.9 percent higher than the prior fiscal year. The substantial increase is due mainly to gross margin improvement, higher revenues from expired license auctions, and a commonwealth-wide credit to retiree medical expense related to settlement with a health insurer. Due to the PLCB’s ability to negotiate product acquisition costs and retail prices with wine and spirits suppliers, it achieved nine-tenths of a point growth in margin, or profitability – from 30.9 percent in fiscal year 2016-17 to 31.8 percent in 2017-18 – while maintaining fair and competitive prices for consumers. 

Contributions to state and local government beneficiaries totaled $749.6 million for the fiscal year.

Contributions to the General Fund, which finances Pennsylvania’s schools, health and human services programs, law enforcement, and public safety initiatives, among other important public services, totaled $702.6 million. General Fund contributions consisted of the following:

• $371.5 million in liquor tax;
• $146 million in state sales tax; and
• $185.1 million in cash transfers.

Other PLCB contributions over the course of the fiscal year included the following:

• $30.5 million to the Pennsylvania State Police for liquor control enforcement efforts;
• $9.4 million in local sales taxes to Philadelphia and Allegheny county;
• $4.6 million in licensing fees returned to local municipalities; and
• $2.5 million to the Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs.

Additionally, the PLCB authorized $1.8 million in grants in fiscal year 2017-18 in support of Pennsylvania’s beer and wine industries and awarded $1.2 million in alcohol education grants to reduce underage and dangerous drinking.

Beginning with the 2017-18 fiscal year, new other post-employment benefit reporting changes became effective for all government employers as required by the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) Statement #75.
 
For the year ending June 30, 2018, the PLCB’s other post-employment benefit obligation was determined to be $793.4 million, 4 percent of the state’s total unfunded other post-employment benefit liability of $19.7 billion. This is the biggest contributing factor to the change in net position. The PLCB is the only commonwealth enterprise fund whose financials are separately reported in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles.
 
The PLCB regulates the distribution of beverage alcohol in Pennsylvania, operates more than 600 wine and spirits stores statewide and licenses more than 20,000 beverage alcohol producers and retailers. The PLCB also works to reduce and prevent dangerous and underage drinking through partnerships with schools, community groups and licensees. Taxes and store profits – totaling $16.5 billion since the agency’s inception – are returned to Pennsylvania’s General Fund, which finances Pennsylvania’s schools, health and human services programs, law enforcement, and public safety initiatives, among other important public services. The PLCB also provides financial support for the Pennsylvania State Police Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement, the Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs, other state agencies and local municipalities across the state.
 
For more information about the PLCB and to review the unaudited fiscal year 2017-18 financials, visit www.lcb.pa.gov.
 
MEDIA CONTACT: Shawn M. Kelly, 717.783.8864
 
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