Mayor Vincent Gray's proposal to expand hours for alcohol sales as a revenue stream was a mixed bag as far as Georgetown's Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) was concerned this week.
- to expand weekday hours to 3 a.m and weekend hours to 4 a.m. for bars;
- to expand hours to allow liquor stores to open at 8 a.m. Mondays through Saturdays and 9 a.m. to midnight on Sundays;
- and to establish a presidential inauguration week in January 2013 and 2017. During this week, bars could remain open until 4 a.m. every night and restaurants could serve 24 hours a day.
The ANC on Monday objected to the later last call for bars, even though many Georgetown bars already have voluntary agreements that bind them to earlier closing times than legally required. In addition to the noise and public drunkenness concerns, several commissioners pointed out that Metro's hours would not extend to match the later bar hours, raising safety concerns.
Commissioners also objected in part to the second bullet point, allowing earlier off-site sale hours (at liquor stores, for instance).
But allowing for Sunday sales and for extended hours during the inauguration every four years gained their support.
Gray partially relies on the anticipated revenue from the extended alchohol sale hours to balance the fiscal 2013 budget.
"If this or portions of this subtitle were to be removed from the budget the city or the council would need to identify the funding that is expected — elsewhere," said Ruth Werner from District Council member Jack Evans' office.
Do you agree with the ANC? Yes to Sunday sales, no to 4 a.m.? Speak out in the comments.