SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 28, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- According to Michael Scippa at California Alcohol Policy Alliance (CAPA), and Alcohol Justice, "We are expressing gratitude to California Governor Jerry Brown today, as he sent SB 905, State Senator Scott Wiener's 4 a.m. bar bill, into the dustbin of failed legislation."
"I am glad to see the Governor once again applying common sense in dealing with an issue that affects us all," stated Actor / Activist Kurtwood Smith.
"Governor Brown's veto of SB 905 is a great victory for the health and well-being of all Californians," said Ruben Rodriguez, Executive Director at Pueblo y Salud, and a founder of CAPA. "The hospitality and alcohol industries, and their minion Senator Wiener, have been stopped one more time. Thank God that sane minds have prevailed."
Governor Brown in his veto statement said, "I believe we have enough mischief from midnight to 2 without adding two more hours of mayhem."
"We want healthier lifestyles in California, not highway fatalities at 4 in the morning. We are glad Governor Brown cited the strong opposition of the California State Highway Patrol to SB 905 in his veto message," stated Bruce Lee Livingston, Executive Director / CEO of Alcohol Justice. "Senator Scott Wiener has vowed to bring up a 4 a.m. bar bill again next year, the same dumb idea that has been defeated since 2004, but CAPA will be ready. Later bar times mean more emergency room visits, more street violence and bar brawls, and more noise in neighborhoods."
The peer-reviewed evidence for increased harms was presented to the legislature and the Governor this year in a joint CAPA/Alcohol Justice report entitled, The Late Night Threat, Science, Harms, and Costs of Extending Bar Service Hours. It highlighted the existing data supporting how the acute effects of extending alcohol sales would spread to "Splash Zones" surrounding the cities in Wiener's poorly constructed "pilot project." Those nine cities, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Sacramento, Oakland, Long Beach, West Hollywood, Palm Springs, Cathedral City, and Coachella, as well as the Splash Zones surrounding them, will now be spared additional alcohol-fueled harm.
"This year, Senator Wiener made a mockery of scientific research and the legislative process by mislabeling his dangerous experiment a 'pilot project"', stated Michael Scippa, Public Affairs Director at Alcohol Justice. "A true, scientifically designed 'pilot project' would cover only a small sample, not over 76% of the state's population. Virtually the entire state would have been exposed to additional alcohol-related harms if Governor Brown had not vetoed the bill. He made the right choice and we commend him for choosing public health and safety over nightlife profits. We also commend the California Highway Patrol (CHP) for their expert counsel to the Governor on the bill."
California currently suffers over 10,500 alcohol-related deaths and $35 billion in costs annually. The California Office of Traffic Safety has reported that fatal DUI is a chronic, worsening problem for the state. Between 2014 and 2016, alcohol-related crash deaths rose 21%. That number would have only gone up with two additional hours of alcohol consumption. The only benefits of selling alcohol between 2 and 4 a.m. would be greater profits to bar, restaurant, and club owners; while the public and all levels of government would be forced to continue to cover the costs of cleaning up the mess that follows.
Margot Bennet, Executive Director at Women Against Gun Violence also expressed appreciation, "Gun violence and alcohol are linked so we are pleased that the Governor has vetoed this dangerous bill."
"We applaud the Governor for looking beyond the hype," stated Scott Suckow, Executive Director with the American Liver Foundation's Pacific Coast Division. "Binge drinking is an increasingly common, costly, and deadly pattern of excessive alcohol use. Governor Brown's veto of SB 905 will make a difference among young people who would have been disproportionally affected by extending last call."
Livingston added a timely note, saying: "Binge drinking is rampant in the United States, as was evidenced this week in the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings regarding Judge Brett Kavanaugh. One in six Americans have binge drinking problems according to the CDC, and later bar times will only accelerate that problem."
Michael Scippa 415 548-0492
Jorge Castillo 213 840-3336
SOURCE Alcohol Justice