6-Feb-2021 (Sat) Wherein we dream of day when parklet drinking becomes permanent.

Scott Wiener is taking another shot at ABC. This bill would be great for everybody, and I wish him luck.

California liquor bill aims to make restaurant parklets permanent, plus zones for open containers

"As we start to see the light at the end of the tunnel with this vaccine, we need to help these small businesses recover," Wiener said in an interview. "Now's the time to make common-sense changes to our alcohol rules that tangibly support small businesses." [...]

The bill would make permanent some of the changes that have been temporarily allowed since the pandemic began, such as allowing restaurants to serve alcohol in outdoor spaces like parking lots and sidewalks. [...] Also, music venues would no longer need to have full kitchens to get liquor licenses. [...]

Some other emergency alcohol measures enacted during the pandemic, such as legalizing takeout and delivery cocktails from restaurants, are not addressed in this bill.

Like the previous attempts at changing our liquor laws (by Wiener and others before him) this rule change would be a change to state law that would allow municipalities to enact these changes if and only if they wanted.

As such, and as before, we can doubtless expect the fundamentalist, prohibitionists nutjobs to sing their usual chorus of: "I don't want this in my suburb, therefore you shouldn't be allowed to have it in your city, either."


5 Responses:

  1. Dude says:

    I thought the same thing when I read about this today.

    As much as I hate Wiener for {sigh} so fucking many reasons, credit where due: this bill is a goddamn great idea.

  2. Jim says:

    Pedestrian street drinking is outlawed by municipal ordinance most places in California, almost all of them infractions with a $100 fine/price. But you know what's easier to figure out than looking up a zillion municipal codes? The Fourth Amendment law around putting a drink in a paper bag. I'm not going to wade into legal advice so I will simply say that it is very well developed in case law.

  3. Thomas Lord says:

    Let me say, bring on the New Orleans. Amen.

    First time I really started to question what this whole California thing is about, whether it's really a big, liberated, nature loving playground or whatever, was when I had a productive day that stretched into night, and winding down, noticed I didn't have a drop of alcohol in the apt., headed out to Safeway at about 2:15AM for a six pack.

    I mean, there was even - literally - a cop there to make sure beer sales weren't happening. At 2:15AM. In Fremont. Not even, like, some Safeway mall cop hanging out. No, a literal municipal cop, patrolling the beer aisle, at 2:15 AM, just in case someone wanted to pound a beer after a long, satisfying day of doing stuff.

    There's something that just ain't right about this state.

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