Wiener's Dangerous 4 a.m. "Zombie" Bar Bill Rises Again
SAN FRANCISCO, June 4, 2022
San Francisco State Senator attempts "Gut & Amend" tactic to impose a toxic public policy benefiting select business owners at considerable cost to California.
SAN FRANCISCO, June 4, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Alcohol Justice is condemning State Senator Scott Wiener's 4th attempt since 2017 to extend alcohol hours of service in California. Wiener "gutted and amended" SB 930, a bill originally relating to housing which passed the Senate in May. Now it's a bill in the Assembly that would allow 7 cities in California to extend alcohol sales in bars and restaurants to 4 a.m. All of Wiener's previous attempts to extend alcohol sales have failed.
"There is no surprise that Senator Wiener has once again chosen nightlife over all life and industry profits over public health and safety," stated Cruz Avila, Executive Director at Alcohol Justice. "This is his fourth attempt to disrupt the protections of a uniform closing time in California. If passed it will allow a poorly conceived "pilot project" to turn much of the state's population into "Splash Zone" lab animals."
"The San Francisco State Senator continues to turn his back on common sense by authoring another dangerous 4 a.m. bill," said Michael Scippa, Public Affairs Director at Alcohol Justice. "Greedy bars, night clubs, and hotels are driving this faulty policy that will extend violence, traffic deaths and nuisance into the early morning commute hours."
"This bill will have a serious negative impact on California's LGBTQ community that is already experiencing exponential rates of substance use and other intersecting issues," stated Mayra Jimenez, Advocacy Manager at Alcohol Justice.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, gay, lesbian, and bisexual adolescents are 90% more likely to use alcohol and drugs than their heterosexual counterparts. Approximately 44.6% of LGB individuals between the ages of 18 and 28 report binge drinking.
"We will continue to fight for justice for the LGBTQ+ community as we convince legislators in Sacramento and in the districts to take bold positions to protect the lives of all Californians and not continue to choose corporate profits masked as small business and "nightlife" promotion. That is a farse for big alcohol to keep drowning our most vulnerable communities with toxic substances that have historically left our communities with devastating health outcomes," added Jimenez. " We need to stop this desperate bend over backwards approach to promote getting drunk as a cultural experience before the August 31 legislative session deadline. California taxpayers need authentic cultural and entertainment venues and avenues that don't sell us out to the highest bidding, substance pushing industry. We do not need to pay for additional public health and safety harms in order to profit the nightlife industry. "
Conservative estimates place state costs at around $3-4 million per year to administer SB 930, mitigate the harm, and clean the blood off the highway. Costs to surrounding "Splash Zone" cities and towns could be millions more.
Alcohol Justice is urging concerned Californians to contact their Assemblymember and make it clear that 4 a.m. last call times will hurt the community. "California politicians need to protect public health and safety, and stop subsidizing Big Alcohol. Nightlife is not more important than all life." added Avila.
Having failed to pass three previous 4 a.m. bar bills (SB 384 in 2017, SB 905 in 2018, SB 58 in 2019) Senator Wiener is now promoting SB 930, a poorly conceived an inadequately funded ABC "pilot project" to extend last call to 4 a.m. in seven cities.
SB 930 disregards 40 years of peer-reviewed, public health research on the dangers of extending last call.
SB 930 will strip away uniform protections of the existing 2 a.m. last call, and spread additional alcohol overconsumption, loss of life, injury, and nuisance across the state.
According to California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS), fatal DUI is a chronic, worsening problem for California.
The U.S. Community Preventive Services Task Force found that every 2-hour increase in last-call times results in greater vehicle crash injuries and E.R. admissions.
There is no such thing as "local control" in alcohol policy. The harm from one city's decision to change last-call times "splashes" over every surrounding community.
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), California already suffers over 10,500 alcohol-related deaths annually, $35 billion in total costs, and $14.5 billion in state costs.
SB 930 subsidizes and rewards late-night alcohol-sellers at tax-payer expense.
TAKE ACTION to STOP SB 930: https://bit.ly/39c6Z6u or Text JUSTICE to 313131
Michael Scippa 415 548-0492
Mayra Jimenez 323 683-4687
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SOURCE Alcohol Justice