Costco To 'Cheer From Sidelines' If Private Liquor Sale Inititiative Comes to Idaho


Costco, which helped bankroll a successful campaign to privatize liquor sales in Washington State, said late Friday that it had no interest in being an active participant in a similar initiative for Idaho or Oregon—at least for now. Costco reportedly shelled out $22 million in the Washington campaign to slide state-run liquor retail operations over to private interests.

"We're going to be cheering on the sidelines," said Joel Benoliel, Costco's legal officer, referring to a possible initiative in Idaho or Oregon. "But we're not going to be leading the parade."

The Northwest Grocery Association has indicated that it preferred to skip the ballot box and try to convince the Idaho Legislature to support privatization, possibly as early as 2013.