Too many liquor licenses poured into Pacific Beach – Letters to the editor

April 6, 2000 No Comments

Letters to the editor: San Diego Union Tribune

Re: “Reducing youths’ access to alcohol” (Opinion, March 30):

At the risk of stating the obvious, Vincent Jimno probably had Pacific Beach in mind when he wrote about youth-related alcohol problems.

Our community has 177 liquor licenses, where only 78 are allowed by law. The lack of courage by the City Council, allied to the chronic acquiescence by the Alcohol Beverage Control Board, has helped Pacific Beach attain all sorts of records: highest DUI rate in the city; highest car-theft and burglary rate, and one of the highest rates of urinating in public, being drunk in public and late-night drag-racing.

As Jimno says, “Communities with a high concentration of alcohol outlets are plagued with high crime rates.” Sadly, the ABC (which has lost sight of the “control” part of its name), grants licenses based on a trinity of absurd reasons: public necessity, public convenience and the fairness doctrine.

If you’ve already granted 177 licenses, how can you refuse the 178th? And if a unique Japanese noodle can be enjoyed only with beer and/or wine, who’s to say nay?

Just last week, Pacific Beach was informed that four more licenses had been granted or renewed without proper notices or public review. Soon, we’ll have a Hooter’s at the Promenade, a Gringo’s where the Old Ox used to be, a Go Greek restaurant (with wine and beer) and the proposed Tower 23 where Harrys’ Surf Shop now stands.

When efforts by members of the community to stem the flow of licenses were met with a profound apathy by representatives of the ABC, we soon realized how powerful the liquor lobby is in Sacramento. Even locally, liquor is equated to income, thanks to taxes paid into the general fund. More booze equals more bucks.

I guess we’ve got to pay for those new stadiums somehow.

ALFRED C. STROHLEIN
Pacific Beach

Source: The San Diego Union – Tribune. San Diego, Calif.: Apr 6, 2000.  pg. B.13

Alcohol Culture in PB, Alcohol Licensees, Bars and Restaurants, Business District, Commentary, Local Laws, The Problems

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