Stateways Sept-Oct 2014

StateWays is the only magazine exclusively covering the control state system within the beverage alcohol industry, with annual updates from liquor control commissions and alcohol control boards and yearly fiscal reporting from control jurisdictions

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Page 13 of 51

StateWays Q Q September/October 2014 14 CONTROL STATES EXECUTIVE FORUM +++++++++++++++++++++ ALABAMA Mac Gipson Administrator, Alcohol Beverage Control Board I f you haven't heard about or seen Alabama's new tourism campaign, you are missing a real treat. "Sweet Home Alabama" is now our official welcome to visitors and reinforcement to our citizens. From the welcome signs on our state highways to the billboards in major cities all over the country, Alabamians everywhere are transforming that proclamation into a way of life. We at the Alabama Alcohol Beverage Control Board are doing just that in our stores and at the central office. I mentioned in this same space last year that "south- ern hospitality" was spreading throughout Alabama's 176 state stores and that customer service was going to be our focus. Well, we've spent this past year evaluat- ing our business techniques and practices. We assessed everything from store layout and lighting to spirit selec- tion and employee product knowledge. All of this was done in an effort to make sure we provide our customers with the very best shopping experience possible. From THE LATEST INDUSTRY DEVELOPMENTS, STRAIGHT FROM CONTROL STATE ADMINISTRATORS T his is the fi fteenth anniversary of the StateWays executive forum, a place where we approach leading offi cials among the control states and ask them to address key issues and developments that have affected their operations over the past year. Their commentaries refl ect changes in the way control states are run, embracing modern technology and business strategies. Privatization continues to be a talking point among certain state executives and some agencies may ultimately be affected as Washington was; however, no realistic privatization efforts are likely to go through as of this writing. Based on these reports, sales revenues have once again increased nearly universally. Control states continue to embrace new responsibility initiatives to encourage responsible alcohol use among adults. Control states are also using business best practices to create time- and money-saving effi ciencies across all elements of the industry; from back offi ce functions to warehouse management to retail outlet design and structure. The offi cials also touch on a variety of modernization initiatives, including the upgrading of POS and security systems, redesigning and enhancing merchandising programs, updating online ordering systems for licensees and developing new compliance technology. We've also learned about the latest legislative changes affecting several state agencies, as well as ongoing enforcement efforts and new legal initiatives. We'd like to once again thank the control state commissioners, chairpersons, administrators and other offi cials who took time from their busy schedules to provide this information for StateWays readers. Here's to another 15 years of hosting the executive forum!

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