• 59°

State lawmakers looking into liquor shortages

Associated Press

RALEIGH — Persistent liquor shortages on local Alcoholic Beverage Control store shelves prompted North Carolina lawmakers to question the current top state ABC official and the distribution contractor.

But after a hearing Wednesday, the House ABC committee chairman leading the discussion remained frustrated, news outlets reported.

“I’m probably more dissatisfied, or unsatisfied at the conclusion of this two hours than I was hoping I would be. I have a lot more questions than I have answers,” said Rep. Tim Moffitt, a Henderson County Republican. “The cause has yet to be really discovered and I don’t think this meeting has really allowed us to really dig in as deep as we would like to.”

The House ABC committee held the meeting less than two weeks after state ABC Commission chairman A.D. “Zander” Guy resigned suddenly, citing in part the liquor supply troubles.

Deputy Commissioner Terrance Merriweather and Ben Thompson, a lawyer representing warehouse vendor LB&B Associates, took most of Wednesday’s questions.

The commission oversees the state’s wholesale and retail liquor distribution. The liquor comes from licensed distillers to the state’s two alcohol warehouses before it gets shipped to locally run ABC stores for sale.

LB&B began its latest contract with the state in July, which required the implementation of a new computerized inventory and ordering software program.

Thompson said LB&B acknowledges delivery problems in July and August were on the company.

“There were some stores that were delayed significantly on their deliveries,” Thompson told the committee. “We believe that we’ve righted that ship. … We think the delivery issues are now on track.”

But legislators say shortages still persist. Officials also attributed the problems to a dramatic increase in consumption, the COVID-19 pandemic, supply chain disruptions, worker shortages and insufficient storage at local stores.

Merriweather said the ABC commission has convened an advisory group to work through issues, including training on the new software.

The commission is focused on “making sure that our customers at the ABC boards are taken care of and our customers throughout North Carolina,” he said.

Comments

Local

Political Notebook: Rowan County elections supervisor speaks out after debate to replace him

Crime

Blotter: Kannapolis man charged with involuntary manslaughter

News

Airplane makes emergency landing at Raleigh-Durham Airport

News

Race-blind redistricting? Democrats incredulous at GOP maps

Local

‘Stories behind these squares’: Town of Cleveland unveils country’s barn quilt mural, trail

Local

Mayoral candidates Alexander, Heggins discuss ‘Fame,’ protesting, pandemic

Education

Supporters of former Knox assistant principal speak up after resignation

Local

Volunteers focus on South Ellis Street for 11th annual BlockWork program

Education

Accounting firm to present annual school district audit report Monday

Lifestyle

Rowan Rockhounds Composite Youth Mountain Bike Team meetings set

Faith

Faith briefs: Barbecue fundraiser, harvest festival set for Nov. 6

Business

A hidden gem on Highway 29, Fusion Salon celebrates more than 15 years in business

Education

Walser honored by Smart Start Rowan

Lifestyle

Two of everything: Estate sale will raise money for cystic fibrosis

Lifestyle

Thanksgiving pie sale to raise funds for Meals on Wheels Rowan

Local

Salisbury council selects firm to assist in recruiting a new city manager

Ask Us

Ask Us: What are current enrollment numbers for Rowan-Salisbury Schools?

Business

Biz Roundup: Community job fair Thursday at West End Plaza

Nation/World

Deal on Biden’s $2T plan edges closer; Harris is ‘confident’

Nation/World

Film crew voiced complaints before fatal on-set shooting

Crime

Juvenile shot Saturday on West Bank Street, hospitalized

Local

City, Bell Tower Green Inc. sign agreement formally handing over maintenance responsibilities

High School

East holds off South for homecoming victory

Business

NC unemployment on 12-month streak of lower rates