…[T]he Office of Financial Management has recommended that neither of the proposals received to lease the state’s liquor warehouse be accepted. According to OFM:

“Based upon an extensive evaluation process, OFM has determined that neither proposal results in net positive financial benefit to the state or local government or meets the best interest of the state. The evaluation process reviewed the qualifications, business, and financial sections of each proposal. The two firms submitting proposals — Washington State Beverage Logistics, LLC, and Washington Beverage Company, LLC — both came with considerable credentials, experience, and capabilities. However, the financial section was weighted most heavily in the evaluation process.

When analyzing the factors relative to the financial section of the proposals, neither proposal was able to provide enough assurance that the firm could achieve its projected sales growth assumptions. If these assumptions were not achieved, the state and local government could be left with significant financial risk in future years. Moreover, the net positive financial benefit to the state and local government was still not significant when compared to other alternatives. For example, some positive financial benefits of the proposals could be implemented by WSLCB or the Legislature. In fact, one proposal was based upon increasing the price of liquor the first year of a contract to achieve its positive financial benefit.

In sum, OFM has determined that the proposals do not represent net ‘positive financial benefit’ to the state or local government as that term was defined in the RFP. An award based upon either proposal received in response to OFM RFP 12-200 is not in the best interest of the state.”

Continuing the liquor theme, Washington local governments may be on the verge of endorsing I-1183 as a result of the Governor’s decision to eliminate local government’s share of state liquor profits.

Erik Smith has the details:

“. . . it appears the realization is slowly beginning to dawn on county and city government organizations that they have a new crisis on their hands. The governor’s proposal, all told, would slash $91 million in revenue that currently goes to local governments, and without new taxing authority or a reduction in services they are required to provide, they face a five-alarm emergency.

And it appears that just about everyone in local-government circles is reading I-1183 with a magnifying glass, trying to make sure they understand its import. Could it really save their bacon?

A posting on the Association of Washington Cities website from last Friday indicates that the organization is going over the initiative line by line. ‘It is unclear what will happen if the governor eliminates cities liquor profits and taxes and I-1183, the liquor privatization initiative passes,’ it says. ‘AWC is researching the issue and will post information on our website as soon as it becomes available.’

For now, the group is planning to send the governor an angry letter.

Meanwhile, the Washington Association of Counties is pondering the same issue.

‘I don’t know the answer to that question,’ said director Eric Johnson. ‘We certainly have looked at that, but it is going to take a really strong analysis.’

With less than a week to go before the election, if city and county government officials are going to take a stand, there isn’t much time left to decide.”

With the election on I-1183 less than a week away, things could get very interesting in a hurry.


[Reprinted from the Wasington Policy Center blog; illustration credit: Sean MacEntee]