SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – The push to allow bars in some California cities to extend their “last call” to 4 a.m. is being revived.
Bars, nightclubs and restaurants across California a currently required to stop selling alcohol at 2 a.m. Tuesday, State Sen. Scott Weiner announced he would be reintroducing the bill, Senate Bill 58, that would allow a total of nine California cities to extend that time.
SB 48 would allow the cities of San Francisco, Oakland, Los Angeles, Sacramento, West Hollywood, Long Beach, Coachella, Cathedral City and Palm Springs to extend last call hours.
Sen. Weiner notes that the bill does not automatically make last call in those cities later; rather, the bill will allow cities the option to decide for themselves.
“California’s century-old, rigid 2 a.m. closing time – which applies equally in large urban areas and small farm towns – stifles our nighttime economy,” said Sen. Weiner in a statement on Tuesday.
Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed a similar bill, SB 905, earlier in 2018, citing concerns raised by the California Highway Patrol over an increase in drunk driving.
“California’s laws regulating late-night drinking have been on the books since 1913,” Gov. Brown said in his veto. “I believe we have enough mischief from midnight to two without adding two more hours of mayhem.”
The previously-vetoed bill had the support of a number of mayors and chambers of commerce statewide.
Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg has spoken in support of a later last call hour, noting how it would help in the revitalization of the downtown district.
“This legislation gives us the flexibility to tailor our nightlife scene to attract tourists and conventions while protecting the character of our quieter residential neighborhoods,” Steinberg said in a statement.
It’s unclear if there are any changes to the new bill from the one that was vetoed.
Gavin Newsom, who will be sworn in as California governor on Jan. 7, will be the ultimate decider on the bill’s fate – if the bill again passes through the legislature with the same bipartisan support.