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Your Views: Janesville Mobilizing 4 Change backs separate alcohol sales in stores

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May 3, 2014

In response to a recent opinion piece, I would like to provide some clarification.

First, regarding Class A licenses, Janesville Mobilizing 4 Change does not believe that increasing licenses alone will impact underage drinking. Janesville’s current carryout liquor stores pass compliance checks, check IDs and refuse sales to underage buyers.

JM4C’s mission is to create a safer, healthier community, and we support responsible economic development. JM4C is working collaboratively, through a series of community forums, to find ways to allow business expansion and development while maintaining community safety and health. We don’t oppose increasing Class A licenses but encourage the city council to do so thoughtfully.

Second, JM4C strongly opposes changing the separation of retail alcohol sales. We believe this ordinance is the reason for significantly lower rates of underage drinking in Janesville compared with the rest of Rock County. Research shows retailers with mixed sales fail compliance checks at higher rates (evidenced by checks throughout Rock County).

National studies show exposure to alcohol and related advertising when out shopping is tied to an earlier onset of drinking and higher amounts of youth alcohol consumption. Our children don’t need to see beer directly next to the soda and juice. In an effort to combat underage and problem drinking in Ireland, a separation law, similar to Janesville’s ordinance, was included in their 2008 Intoxicating Liquors Act.

Separation of sales is responsible, and it’s working—Janesville needs to keep this ordinance!

SHARI FABER

Board chairwoman

JM4C



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