East Lansing Police Chief Opposes Extended Bar Hours

24 02 2009

Mike and I got into a discussion today in the comments section of another post about longer bar hours.  I’m in favor.  I’ve seen it work.  I came from a city that had a 4 AM zone downtown.  It was by accident that I came across this article in the State News were the East Lansing Police Chief voices his opposition.

But for East Lansing police, longer bar hours would mean more patrols and more money spent to pay officers, East Lansing police Chief Tom Wibert said.

“On weekends, we would increase our overtime pay,” Wibert said. “We generally put out extra foot patrols on bar nights.”

Wibert said making liquor available Sunday mornings probably wouldn’t affect police, but the extended bar hours could pose a problem of increased late night crime.

“Not many good things happen between 2 and 4 a.m.,” he said.

Two things.  1.)  You’re a police department.  You’re job is to serve and protect.  Plan accordingly.  2.) Extended bar hours do not increase late night crime.  You have no proof of that  and there are several cities that have 4 AM license and it works.  Instead of prediciting what you think would happen, I would suggest getting in touch with Peoria (IL) Police Chief Steve Settinsgaard who actually encourage the expansion of Peoria’s 4 AM zone a few years back. 

East Lansing has a number of bars in a small area and they’re near the police headquarters.  Extending the liquor license by two hours shouldn’t be that big of a deal.