From the Long Beach Post By Brian Addison
Ninth District Councilmember Steve Neal had a few questions on Tuesday night. The first is: Why are there more liquor stores—with the least amount of restrictions in the City—located in North Long Beach when a staggering 38% of its population is under the age of 21 and 71% of its population are families with children? The second: Why are a third of Long Beach’s liquor stores concentrated in an area that accounts for less than 20% of the city’s population?
The impact of these numbers should not be easily dismissed. The density of liquor stores—three times higher than the rest of the city—paired with the city’s largest population of people of color and most marginalized has severe consequences, both business-wise and socially, according to Neal.
So Neal proposed a solution—to have North Long Beach become a pilot-study area in which, via the Planning Commission, current zoning regulations would be reviewed and performance standards known as Conditional Use Permits (CUPs) could potentially be implemented on area liquor stores that have operated unregulated for decades.
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