City commissioners love curfews. No issue has pissed off as many of Marc Sarnoff's constituents as his approval of Coconut Grove's 3 a.m. last call. And horrible driver Richard Dunn has recently urged cops to cite teenagers and fine parents who violate the 11 p.m. teen curfew that's been in the books for decades.
Well, now they're coming after your booze too.
The city commission will soon take up a resolution that would bar convenience stores in Overtown, Park West, Omni, and downtown from selling alcohol past midnight. The excuse: "Improving quality of life."
At the March 15 Overtown/Park West Community Redevelopment Meeting, executive director James Villacorta asked the city commission to take up the issue because in Overtown there have been "people milling around at these convenient [sic] stores through the night and causing" problems, such as drinking on the sidewalk and selling guns.
Villacorta said that by limiting alcohol sales at midnight, people will get less drunk and therefore cause fewer problems. "We feel it would be reasonable in the redevelopment area to improve the quality of life and to promote safety and the welfare of the residents of the area." Reverend Lovejoy's wife made a similar argument on The Simpsons once, screaming, "Won't somebody please think of the children!?"
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Villacorta continued, "There's one convenient [sic] store on Biscayne Boulevard just north of the arena that is the number one call for service and arrest in the redevelopment area." What? Not the BP on NE 10th Street, not the BP! Where will the kids get their PBR?
Then Sarnoff chimed in, saying the commission should also explore extending the curfew to Omni and downtown, or the Downtown Development Authority. The Omni CRA, which he chairs, will take up the same resolution Monday. We're just in stitches to see if it passes.
Dunn, not wanting to be left off the moral high horse, upped the ante in support of the curfew. "Not because I'm a reverend, but certainly it has been proven that, particularly in areas like District 5, in the African-American communities, the sale of alcohol can sometimes go beyond the boundaries," he said. Maybe you're just thinking of your own driving record, reverend?
Sarnoff, Dunn, Willy Gort, and Francis Suarez voted to send the resolution to the city commission. It would still have to be approved there to become enforceable. The minutes from the CRA March 15 meeting are here. For the lessons of The Simpsons episode on prohibition, buy the DVD.