19 Oct Pennsylvania to Feature Rare-Liquor Lottery Payments in Lieu of Last Year’s Disaster
The choice between a lump sum versus annuity settlement is not the only one for gamblers in Pennsylvania this month. Instead of winning money, residents of the Keystone State can win lottery payments of rare liquor, according to local reports as well as the consumer advocacy site Consumerist.com. The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (PLCB) has decided that they’re going to hold lottery-style raffles starting next week to determine the buying rights of rare alcohol for consumers and commercial businesses.
“In recent years, certain products have become very popular among aficionados, enthusiasts and collectors,” said Tim Holden, PLCB chairman, in a statement. “When sold through our traditional online store in the past, the extraordinary demand for these products, which are often sold at prices far below what consumers find in other states, often led to products selling out within only a few minutes.”
Holden is referring to a specific situation that happened last year when they tried a first-come first-serve approach for a batch of rare Pappy Van Winkle bourbon. The website set up to sell it through crashed within minutes of going live due to the mass amount of traffic.
The LCB legally controls and operates all liquor stores in the state of Pennsylvania, which means everyone has to go through them to purchase alcohol. The government is not expected to withhold 25% of the lottery payments like they do with traditional jackpots though.
In-state competition is not the only factor for a lump sum lottery payout of liquor, according to the Philadelphia NBC affiliate NBCPhiladelphia.com.
“One of the concerns we’ve heard most from Pennsylvania residents and licensees is how folks from other states are able to buy up what vendors allocate to the commonwealth,” said Dale Hurst, PLCB director of marketing and merchandising.
The first drawing will be held on October 13. There are 24 bottles of Buffalo Trace Experimental Collection bourbon to be raffled off in the maiden voyage. Which begs the question, is annuity-style lottery payments, similar to the Mega Millions which includes 30 gradually increasing payments, available for the rare bourbon? One shot for the first year until you work your way up to the full bottle?
Winners are limited to one per customer. No matter how expensive these booze are worth every winner will be returning to work like almost half (48%) of lottery winners do. Unless of course the consumption of such beverages is more of a lifestyle than luxury. Then there’s no telling.
“In order to ensure that all consumers interested in a particular high-demand product have a fair chance to purchase the product, we have developed a lottery system for our most limited products,” Holden said.
In total, 25% of products will be available exclusively to bars and restaurants, while 75% is reserved for the public.