Shippensburg Sheetz Beer Sales Controversy Continues

Shippensburg Sheetz Beer Sales Controversy Continues

Sheetz is firing back at an appeal that halted beer sales at their Shippensburg gas station. The company says they will fight the petition filed by the Civic Club of Shippensburg in court.

FRANKLIN COUNTY, Pa. -  Sheetz is firing back at an appeal that halted beer sales at their Shippensburg gas station last week. The company said they will fight the petition filed by the Civic Club of Shippensburg in court.

"Our customers let us know and they continue to let us know by the thousands that this is a convenience that they want to be afforded in the state of Pennsylvania,” said Ryan Sheetz, Director of Brand Development and Sales for Sheetz, Inc., adding that Sheetz’s lawyers have been working diligently to ensure that a petition is filed on their behalf.

Back in July, the Altoona-based company got a license from the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board to sell beer at their Shippensburg store on East King Street, and for about two weeks they did. Just last week, however, they were ordered to stop because of the appeal filed by the Civic Club of Shippensburg on Aug. 6.

The Civic Club's attorneys have labeled the Liquor Control Board's decision "arbitrary” and “an abuse of discretion,” according to court documents. They argue that under the state's liquor control law, beer is not allowed to be sold where gas is sold.

"When someone is able to interject here and file and appeal and say Sheetz doesn't deserve a license, I mean that's just indicative to us that change is required of a broken system,” Sheetz said.

Sheetz currently sells beer in the five other states they operate in. They said their track record in those states speaks for itself.

"It not only tells us that our customers appreciate that kind of convenience, but also it gives credence to our ability to operate these programs responsibly," Sheetz said.

Regardless of the appeal’s outcome, Sheetz said they see a need to change the system they are calling broken.

"We need to elevate this to a higher level, to a state level,” Sheetz said. “Let's figure out how a responsible retailer can sell a restricted item responsibly and effectively to meet a consumer demand."

The Civic Club of Shippensburg and their lawyers declined WHAG’s requests for an interview.

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