Closing time. You don't have to go home, but you can't stay here.
A bill that would have allowed California bars, clubs and restaurants to serve alcohol until 4 a.m., two hours past the current last call, was voted down Tuesday in the Senate Committee. Go ahead and drink away your sorrows. We understand.
Introduced by state Senator Mark Leno, Senate Bill 645 aimed to help propel California nightlife to the level of late-night hotspots in New York, Vegas, Chicago and Miami, which could create jobs, boost tourism and generate local tax revenue. Supporters believed a more staggered set of closing hours could lead to increased safety–partiers wouldn't be hitting the roads all at the same time.
Opponents, however, argued that extended hours would mean drivers would be more tired and more drunk, a threat to early-morning highway workers and commuters. One Change.org petition read, "Talk to any emergency-department physician, 9-1-1 dispatcher, law-enforcement professional, or bus driver about the unintended consequences of keeping the liquor flowing until 4 a.m."
The vote was 6-4, and the deadline has passed for the senator to try again this year. A Leno spokesperson told LA Weekly that it hasn't been decided whether they'll reintroduce the bill next year.