NH House Speaker Announces Committee to Review Serious Allegations Against State Liquor Commission

CONCORD – House Speaker William O’Brien today announced the formation of the Special Committee to Review and Reform the New Hampshire State Liquor Commission.  The committee will look into numerous allegations made against the Commission, including violating the state law against agencies hiring lobbyists, violating the state law against oppressing state officials, ignoring administrative rules against warehousing local manufacturers, engaging in bootlegging activities, hiding documentation from a legislative committee, misallocating $100,000 in wine and utilizing improper methods in constructing a request for proposals for a liquor warehouse contract.  The committee will review the decision in 2009 to move the Commission out of Legislative and Executive Council oversight and will offer recommendations on the future direction of liquor sales in New Hampshire.

The committee will be chaired by Rep. Lynne Ober of Hudson, and will also consist of Reps. Benjamin Baroody of Manchester, Jenn Coffey of Danbury, Marilinda Garcia of Salem, Kenneth Gidge of Nashua, Brandon Guida of Chichester, Shawn Jasper of Hudson, Carol McGuire of Epsom, Dan McGuire of Epsom, Tara Sad of Walpole and Jordan Ulery of Hudson.

House Speaker William O’Brien

“The numerous and very serious allegations against the State Liquor Commission demonstrate clearly that we need significantly more oversight to determine if this is a rogue agency.  The hardworking taxpayers surely deserve answers about how their money is being spent, and this committee will find out if there is mismanagement, waste or illegal activities taking place in a $550 million a year state organization.  Furthermore, this committee will also consider the decision to move the Commission away from oversight in 2009 and whether to reverse that decision or to go in a different direction with liquor sales in the future.”