**FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE**
SEPTEMBER 26, 2012
Contact: Aja Worthy-Davis (212) 788-7081
COUNCIL MEMBER LETITIA JAMES CALLS ON THE NYS LIQUOR AUTHORITY TO REQUIRE CERTAIN LIQUOR LICENSE APPLICATIONS TO INCLUDE SECURITY, COMMUNITY SAFETY PLAN
(New York, NY)— On Monday, September 21, 2012, Council Member Letitia James introduced a resolution into the New York City Council. The resolution calls on the New York State Liquor Authority (SLA) to further protect local communities through more thoroughly communicating with residents, community leaders, and local elected officials concerning liquor licensing; and to require liquor license applications for large venues to include thorough security and community safety plans.
Currently, the SLA requires any business entity applying for a liquor license to submit a 30-day notification form to the local community board. The 30-day notification process is meant to afford all those affected an opportunity to voice their position. A Brooklyn Speaks petition signed by nearly 1,400 residents requested that Barclays Center’s license be limited to serving drinks during ticketed arena events only, and must mandate an end to liquor sales after half time at an NBA game, 45 minutes before the end of an event, or at 10:00PM—whichever comes first. Although Barclay’s Center complied with the 30-day notification requirement, and public hearings were held, developer Forest City Ratner and the SLA did not implement an early cutoff for alcohol sales (as had been consistently requested and outlined in the community-centered Barclays Center Neighborhood Protection Plan). Instead, the Board voted to impose a 1:00AM cut off for liquor sales at the arena.
“It is important that the State Liquor Authority understand that even with the most meticulous crowd management imaginable, the opening of an arena that serves alcohol into the morning will affect residential life in the surrounding community,” said Council Member Letitia James. “I would certainly hope that when the next big arena is developed in New York City, the SLA would make more of an effort to address quality-of-life concerns raised by the community.”
Stakeholders also requested that SLA require Forest City Ratner to clarify and make transparent their security and community safety plan prior to granting the license.
Barclay’s Center will soon be holding sporting events and concerts that seat up to 20,000 individuals.