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New Pacific Beach Alcohol Restrictions Face Council Opposition


Aired 9/8/11

An effort to reign in the development of bars and restaurants in Pacific Beach may have stalled out. The councilman for the neighborhood doesn’t support the movement.

— Pacific Beach has long been seen as a place in San Diego to relax, soak in the beach atmosphere and have a few drinks. It’s that last part that some residents have a problem with. Now the Pacific Beach Planning Group is recommending the city place conditional use permits on new bars and restaurants that want to open in the area.

Some residents in Pacific Beach would like to see more restrictions on bars a...
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Above: Some residents in Pacific Beach would like to see more restrictions on bars and restaurants opening in the neighborhood.

It’s a suggestion Councilman Kevin Faulconer does not agree with. In a statement, Faulconer said additional restrictions wouldn’t lead to good behavior, but would add more red tape for businesses in an already tough economy.

Bar owner Eric Lingenfelder agrees. He said conditional use permits, which could do things like limiting operating hours and restricting how much alcohol can be sold, would hurt all businesses.

"Even though a lot of bars and restaurants may be grandfathered into the process, there are a lot of things that could trigger a CUP that would encourage bars and restaurant owners to not continue to update and improve their property or to even sell to new, upcoming owner/operators," he said.

But a recent report to the Pacific Beach Planning Group found that while the beach strip is zoned for 10 liquor licenses, it actually has more than 60 establishments serving liquor. P.B. resident Marcie Beckett was involved in writing the report. She says the permits aren’t closely regulated by the state and have been transferred and modified over the years.

"So the end result is, the same license is now serving harder liquor to more people over longer times later into the night. So it has different impacts," she said.

There is no formal process for bringing community planning group requests before the City Council. Councilman Faulconer’s office said he’s not planning to bring up the issue right now.

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Avatar for user 'rockenmom'

rockenmom | September 8, 2011 at 12:20 p.m. ― 5 years, 5 months ago

I love the booze ban! It was so bad we stopped taking our kids there and would drive to Del Mar because people were so drunk I was scared for my children. Come on licensed for 10 but has >60 establishments, that's a shame.

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Avatar for user 'litsem'

litsem | September 8, 2011 at 4:10 p.m. ― 5 years, 5 months ago

There is a place for everyone. Don't live in PB if you don't like PB culture a few times a year. There are plenty of places in San Diego for everyone, if you don't like something find your place with likeminded people, but don't try to put your desires and morality on others. PB is a good place for young people, if you're not in your 20's maybe it's not a place for you.. instead of trying to make a point loma out of pb, go to point loma and let pb be pb.

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Avatar for user 'pbSpiritsDOTcom'

pbSpiritsDOTcom | September 20, 2011 at 7:31 p.m. ― 5 years, 5 months ago

"...and have a few drinks. It’s that last part that some residents have a problem with."

This is not true. I don't know anyone that is against anyone having a few drinks. What they and I have a problem with is the chronic over-serving no, over-saturation of patrons by a select few bad bar and 'restaurant' business operators.

litsem: no one is trying to impose their morals on you... unless you call public safety 'morals'. Many of us in this community have seen an entire degradation of safety and enough is enough. The bad business operators are like insolent children who, given the choice of a babysitter (CUP) reject the notion entirely... for obvious reasons.

It's time San Diego caught up with the rest of California and started DEMANDING local control (City of San Diego not, community of PB) over their State alcohol licensing *and* enforcement operations.

I call this independence... doing for ourselves what the state is incapable of doing... we wouldn't be in this mess if the legislature gave the ABC enough funds to enforce... or, let the ABC keep fines just like the DEA can. Until then we're obligated to keep people safe... even if they keep whining that we should leave if we don't like it (LOL... great idea, run...).

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