Canonsburg gas station among those licensed to sell beer

The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board is granting nine more licenses to businesses that sell gasoline, including one in Canonsburg. It’s the latest step in loosening the hold on beer sales by bars and beer distributors.

The Liquor Control Board’s vote Wednesday is the first since February. That’s when the state Supreme Court said it would take up a case challenging whether a convenience store can sell beer and gasoline without violating state law.

The beer licenses are for grocery and convenience stores in northeastern Pennsylvania, including the Wilkes-Barre area, Hazleton, Orangeville and Mahonoy City, and in Western Pennsylvania, including Canonsburg, Gibsonia and Huntingdon.

Paul Lathia, whose Lathia Investments LLC owns Canonsburg Sunoco at 404 W. Pike St., is among the recipients of a license.

Lathia said Wednesday he applied to the PLCB about six months ago. He said he plans to begin selling “all kinds of beer” as soon as he remodels a portion of the gas station.

Lathia said he is not certain of the quantities of beer he’ll be permitted sell.

“I need to see what the license allows,” he said.

Liquor Control Board officials say dozens of beer licensees also sell gas. That’s despite wording in the state liquor law that bans alcohol sales licenses in locations, places and properties where gasoline is sold.