Central N. Y. Liquor Store Owner Speaks Out Against Paterson's Proposal

Oswego, NY – A Central N.Y. area liquor store owner is speaking out in opposition of Gov. David Paterson's proposal to allow wine sales in grocery stores.

Owners of wine and liquor stores lobbied in Albany this week against Paterson's plan. They said the move would put small stores out of business, costing the state thousands of jobs, while also leading to an increase in underage drinking.

George Donovan, owner of Auburn Discount Liquor Incorporated for 28 years, estimates he would lose upwards of 30 percent of wine sales, which creates about 60 percent of his profits.

"There would just be job loss after job loss. The jobs would not be replaced in the supermarket industry; they have all the employees they need. They wouldn't be hiring additional cashiers, they would just take some of their floor space and put top selling wines in them," said Donovan.

Donavan said Paterson's plan would cripple his business.

Paterson's plan to have N.Y. join 35 states that allow supermarket wine sales, includes more compromises for liquor stores than previous proposals. The governor has estimated a store franchise fee could generate $92 million dollars for the state in the 2010-2011 fiscal year. Grocery stores, some wineries, and grape growers are in support of the proposal.