Source: The Associated Press
October 15th, 2010 07:23 AM
ANCHORAGE, Alaska – The city of Anchorage would crack down on some stores selling cheap liquor often purchased by street inebriates under rules to be studied by four community councils.
The rules are based on a law approved by the Anchorage Assembly for the Downtown Community Council district.
The law passed this week prevents the sale of wine costing less than $10 a bottle, six-packs of beer costing less than $6 and bottles of liquor priced less than $10 or smaller than 750 milliliters.
The law also mandates that individual containers have stickers identifying what store they came from and it prohibits stores from posting prices or beer signs on windows.
Community councils for Mountain View, Northeast, Fairview and Government Hill now are looking toward restrictions in their districts.
The new ordinance, pushed by Anchorage Assembly Vice Chair Patrick Flynn, affects four downtown liquor stores, which already had the restrictions as part of their individual permits to sell alcohol. Future liquor stores in the area also will have to follow the pricing restrictions.
Litter around town makes it clear that the cheaper alcohol is what’s being abused on the streets, Flynn said.
“Whoever you’re selling it to, it’s finding its way into the hands of somebody that’s not using it responsibly,” he said.
In Government Hill, there has been a drastic increase in public drunkenness in the last two years, according to council president Bob French. The neighborhood’s lone liquor store sells cheaper alcohol than is available anywhere else in the nearby vicinity and draws customers from downtown, he said.
“If you’re a public inebriate, and you have no income, (a) dollar a bottle is worth making a mile trek across a bridge,” French said.
Sharon Chamard, Fairview’s community council president, said the council would look closer at price restrictions, but she added that it is yet to be determined how the restrictions would affect responsible drinkers.