Officials in the Atlanta are reviewing legislation in hopes to overhaul the city's alcohol code. Only six liquor licenses have been revoked in the last five years, even though the same number of businesses were cited for selling alcohol to minors last week in Marietta.
There are also problems with establishments cutting corners by getting restaurant licenses when they're really nightclubs or interfering with their neighbors' quality of life by letting things like loitering, littering, and petty crime slide. Creative Loafing reports that the community wants greater accountability by bars and nightclubs for what happens in their neighborhoods, and a 16-member Alcohol Technical Advisory Group has been put in place to focus on "[cracking] down on businesses that currently flout existing laws" and intends to have new legislation drafted before the fall.
"From Bankhead to Buckhead, people are sick and tired with the lack of enforcement," the councilman in charge of the board says. He hopes to find a balance between what the community wants and the rights of bar owners. One of the problems lies in the fact that after certain strip clubs won a lawsuit, liquor licenses are viewed as basic property rights instead of privileges and can only be denied to businesses actually doing something legally wrong, like falsifying information or violating codes. Plans for the new legislation also include getting rid of that silly happy hour ban.
· Changing How We Drink [CL]
· Taqueria Tsunami, Loco Willy's Sell to Minors [Marietta Patch]
· Unhappy Hour [CL]