San Francisco may finally catch up to East Coast drinking standards thanks to a new bill introduced by Senator Scott Wiener.
The LOCAL Act (Let Our Communities Adjust Late Night), which was announced on Wednesday, would allow California bars to serve alcohol until 4am, leaving the decision to extend hours up to local jurisdictions. It's being supported by local restaurants and hospitality groups, including the Golden Gate Restaurant Association and San Francisco Chamber of Commerce, who argue that longer hours would mean more tourists, more commerce, and more tax revenue for the city. The bill would not permit extended hours at liquor stores.
"Night life matters a lot, culturally and economically, and it's time to allow local communities more flexibility," Wiener said in a Facebook post.
"It will also help communities decide what is best for them," added Juliana Bunim, spokeswoman for the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce. "Because what works in the Mission or Union Square—areas with a high concentration of bars and restaurants—may not work for more residential areas like the Sunset or Richmond."
In 2013, a similar measure introduced by Wiener's predecessor Mark Leno failed to garner enough support, leaving San Francisco and Los Angeles way behind cities such as Chicago, Washington D.C., New York, Buffalo, Las Vegas, Louisville, Atlanta, Miami, New Orleans, and Atlanta, which all permit drinking past 2am.