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Solana Beach Impasse Over Alcohol Policy At Fletcher Cove Community Center

Fletcher Cove Community Center in Solana Beach, Oct. 2013.

Aired 10/9/13 on KPBS News.

Our Congressional representatives are not the only ones at an impasse this week; The city of Solana Beach is facing a deadlock that could result in a special election the city can ill afford.

Congress is at an impasse, and unresolved conflict seems to be in the air: in Solana Beach, a battle is over a charming community center perched on the cliffs overlooking Fletcher Cove.

Citizens donated $225,000 for its renovation.

In August, the Solana Beach City Council came up with a compromise plan to open the Fletcher Cove Community Center for events. However, the plan limits parties with alcohol to once every two weekends.

Fletcher Cove Community Center in Solana Beach, overlooking the ocean and an ideal spot for public and private events. But it is in a residential neighborhood and has generated heated controversy over how often to allow events where alcohol is served.

Some neighboring residents believe that policy is too liberal. Others are adamant that it’s too restrictive. The latter group has collected more than 1,300 signatures to bring the matter to the ballot.

The move has put the council in a tough spot: Wednesday night, it must consider whether to remove the restrictions on events serving alcohol or face a special election at a cost to the city of $200,000.

That cost is almost as much as the citizens raised to renovate the center in the first place.

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