SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – Last call will stay 2 am in California, despite a push to extend it to 4 am in nine cities, including Sacramento.
Governor Jerry Brown vetoed the bill, saying:
“Without question, these two extra hours will result in more drinking. The businesses and cities in support of this bill see that as a good source of revenue. The California Highway Patrol, however, strongly believes that this increased drinking will lead to more drunk driving. California’s laws regulating late night drinking have been on the books since 1913. i believe we have enough mischief from midnight to 2 without adding two more hours of mayhem.”
Senate Bill 905 called for a pilot program, overseen by the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, allowing licensed businesses to sell alcohol two hours later. The program would have run from January 1, 2021 until January 2, 2026 in Sacramento, San Francisco, Cathedral City, Coachella, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Oakland, Palm Springs, and West Hollywood. Interested businesses would have had to apply in order to participate, and pay a special fee.
SB 905 had the support of a number of mayors and Chambers of Commerce statewide, including Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg. Many groups opposed the bill, including the Alcohol Policy Panel of San Diego County. it wrote, “76% of the state’s population will be affected. They will experience increases in alcohol consumption and related problems including violence, emergency room admission, injuries, alcohol impaired driving, and motor vehicle crashes. Furthermore, it will have regional consequences, especially for municipalities within driving distance of cities who adopt a later closing time forcing neighboring cities to absorb increased financial and societal burden related to DUI.”
A similar bill failed last year.