News Column

California Community and State Coalition defeats Senator Leno's Extension of Alcohol Sales

May 3 2013 12:00AM

Hispanic PR Wire

LOS ANGELES, May 3, 2013 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ -- The Wall-Las Memorias Project (TWLMP) congratulates Alcohol Justice and the statewide Coalition to Stop Leno's 4 a.m. Bar Bill and applauds the California Senate Governmental Organization Committee (GO) for carefully analyzing and putting an end to Senate Bill 635. This bill would have allowed California bars, restaurants, and nightclubs to extend alcohol sales from 2 a.m. to 4 a.m., which could have created a dangerous public health and public safety crisis in the state.

"We were very pleased to play such a key role in the defeat of this bill at the State committee level and happy to have worked with many community leaders to help mobilize the support to defeat it," stated Richard Zaldivar, Executive Director of The Wall Las Memorias Project. "They must know that we are ready and able to organize against this bill or any other in the future that values alcohol sales more than public health and safety."

This measure would have directly impacted local communities and everyday people. Local entities would not have the necessary capacity of law enforcement to deal with bars and restaurants open from 2 a.m. – 4 a.m. With little-to-no mass transportation available in most major cities at 4 a.m., it could have resulted in more DUIs, and increased traffic collisions. Not to mention the increase of violent alcohol-related crimes, which could have risen public spending to cover the cost for police, emergency responders, and emergency-room visits.

California Sate Senator Ron Calderon (D-Montebello - the 30th senatorial district) was eager to help defeat this proposed legislation. He stated, "My vote was on behalf of my constituents, they made their voices loud and clear regarding this issue. I could not support SB 635 in good conscience, knowing there was a serious concern that it would put in jeopardy the health and safety of the communities."

According to Alcohol Justice, California suffers $38.4 billion in alcohol-related harm every year, with 10,000 lives lost and hundreds of thousands of additional injuries. The $38.4 billion amount includes the total alcohol-related cost of crime, injuries, traffic accidents, and illnesses that plague California with a closing time for alcohol sales at 2 a.m. Adding more hours of alcohol consumption will only increase alcohol-related harm and adds more costs to the state of California.

"Senator Leno can reintroduce his 4 a.m. bar bill next January, or the proponents may circulate petitions among voters to place it on the ballot," said Jorge Castillo, Advocacy Director at Alcohol Justice. "Either way, we will continue to work with community organizations like The Wall Las Memorias Project and other public health and safety leaders throughout the state of California to defeat it or any similar measure."

Here is how the California Senate GO Committee Voted:

Six Senators said NO to Senator Leno's Bill: Berryhill (R-Modesto), Calderon (D-Montebello), Cannella (R-Merced), Correa (D-Santa Ana), Lieu (D-Redondo Beach), and Nielson (R-Chico).

Those who voted YES to the restaurant and liquor industry-sponsored special interest measure were: Senator Kevin De Leon (D-Los Angeles), Senator Ed Hernandez (D-West Covina), Senator Alex Padilla (D-Van Nuys), and Committee Chair, Senator Roderick Wright (D-Inglewood). Senator Cathleen Galgiani (D-Stockton) did not vote.

Statewide Opposition includes:

Alcohol Justice

Asian American Drug Abuse Program (AADAP)

Ban Billboard Blight

Bay Area Community Resources (BACR)

County Alcohol & Drug Program Administrators Association of California (CADPAAC)

California Council on Alcohol Problems (CALCAP)

California Narcotic Officers Association

California Police Chiefs Association

City of Los Angeles

City of Hermosa Beach

County of Sacramento

Friday Night Live

Institute for Public Strategies

Lutheran Office of Public Policy California

Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood

Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca

Los Angeles City Council Member Bernard Parks

Metro United Methodist Urban Ministry

NoAlcoholAds.org

P3 Partnership for a Positive Pomona

Paso Por Paso, Inc.

Phoenix House

Pueblo Y Salud, Inc.

People Reaching Out

Prevention Institute

Social Model Recovery Systems

The Wall–Las Memorias Project

WCTU

Women Against Gun Violence

Writers In Treatment

Youth Leadership Institute (YLI)

For more information, please contact Richard Zaldivar, Executive Director for The Wall-Las Memorias Project, at 323.712.0180 or rzaldivar@thewalllasmemorias.org.


SOURCE The Wall-Las Memorias Project (TWLMP)



Source: Hispanic PR Wire


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