Letter: Liquor Commission not dealing fairly
To the editor:
I have been following the unfolding saga between the N.H. Liquor Commission and the 130-year old Law Company of Nashua, that has been warehousing and trucking wine and spirits for the state during the past 40 years. In part to justify their decision to give a new 20-year warehouse contract to Excel, a foreign company, several liquor commissioners have referred to Brian Law as arrogant and greedy. I have known Brian closely for more than 30 years and I feel strongly that these terms certainly do not describe Brian Law. But don’t take my word for it; ask around greater Nashua about Brian and the Law Company.
Brian is the fifth generation to run the family business, and he is highly knowledgeable about warehousing and transporting lots of stuff including alcoholic beverages. I don’t know what the requirements are in becoming a liquor commissioner, but perhaps they are threatened by Brian’s expertise. I do know that Brian spent much time and energy researching ways to improve logistics, and then he suggested a 20-year contract so that major investments in automation to help handle the state’s expanding liquor business could be justified.
The Law Co. has been managing the complex logistics of receiving, storing, picking and shipping an array of more than 10,000 types of wine and spirits, and up to now the Liquor Commission has been very pleased with the Law Company’s 40-year performance. So what is really going on? Why the sudden change with the Liquor Commission? Among other things, what happened to loyalty? With the economy still in crisis, why is a state agency now threatening more than 120 existing jobs and a 130-year old company that is very loyal to its employees and gives very freely of its time and resources to the greater Nashua area? Certainly the foreign company Excel does not concern itself with such issues.
I’ve watched the current Liquor Commission delay and jerk the Law Co. around throughout much of the recent contracting process. Apparently the Excel presentation snowed the commissioners, but the figures don’t really add up. So now we’re in a very expensive lawsuit process.