Sheetz Exec Wants To Set Sen. Ferlo Straight

Louie Sheetz
Harrisburg Patriot-News

On behalf of Sheetz’s 9000 Pennsylvania employees and their families, not to mention our hundreds of thousands of loyal Pennsylvania customers, I urge state Sen. Jim Ferlo, D-Alleghenyto retract his recent, offensive and grossly erroneous comments that degraded these individuals.

By now, [Sen. Ferlo’s] intemperate remarks during the recent Pennsylvania Senate Law and Justice Committee hearing have been widely disseminated, both among your colleagues and, thanks to the media coverage, to the general public.

The committee hearing was intended to provide a forum to discuss policy issues surrounding the current, antiquated alcohol sale laws in Pennsylvania. It was not intended as a forum for such a vicious attack on a family owned and operated Pennsylvania Company that employs 9000 Pennsylvanians, not to mention the thousands of families that rely upon Sheetz for their livelihood.

Committee Chairman Charles T. McIlhinney, R-Bucks, deserves a great deal of credit for his efforts to have this discussion and for his commitment to produce a legislative product that improves consumer convenience and choice with respect to beer, wine and spirits.

Sheetz does not regret standing by those employees and customers who want more flexibility with respect to the sale of beer at convenience stores.

Gov. Tom Corbett, and the many House and Senate members who have championed this consumer cause also deserve credit for advancing this issue. But there is a line between healthy public debate and defamatory, unwarranted attacks, and Sir, you crossed that line.

Notwithstanding Ferlo’s recent performance, Sheetz does not regret standing by those employees and customers who want more flexibility with respect to the sale of beer, including at convenience stores that also happen to dispense gas, as we do responsibly in five other states.

Our employees will benefit from these policies and we will hire even more employees if given the opportunity to sell beer. That is precisely the basis for our campaign — a vehicle for those individuals to communicate with their elected officials.

For 11 consecutive years, Sheetz has been voted as one of the Best Places to Work in Pennsylvania (only one of three that can make that claim). That testimony also discussed our support for the communities within which we operate. I encourage Sen. Ferlo to review this information before choosing to impose his own value judgment regarding Sheetz, and to demean our employees and customers.

Louie Sheetz is the Executive Vice-President for Marketing, Sheetz, Inc, Altoona, Pa.