San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

October 14th, 2008
City of San Marcos Channel: MADD supports uniform bar hours

From Hospitality San Marcos S-PAC

Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) advocates setting uniform statewide cut off limits on the sale of alcoholic beverages in order to end the practice of “bar hopping” to find establishments with later closing hours for “one last drink” with the likelihood of impaired driving as a result.

The Hospitality San Marcos S-PAC shares this concern and asks each responsible person to vote in favor of this referendum on Nov. 4.

So far in 2008, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety statistics provided to Hospitality San Marcos under Freedom of Information requests, there have been two fatalities, two incapacitating injuries and two non-incapacitating injuries along the corridor defined as East 6th Street in Austin to Posey Road between the hours of 12 a.m. and 4 a.m. involving alcohol and drivers between the ages of 18 to 25.

Additionally, information published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that Hays County had more than twice as many alcohol-related traffic fatalities per 100,000 population in 2007 than Travis County, Bexar County and Comal County. (http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/departments/nrd-30/ncsa/STSI/48_TX/2007/Counties/Texas_Hays%20County_2007.HTM)

In concert with Hospitality San Marcos, MADD, along with a group of concerned citizens, understand that far too many people leave San Marcos after the bars close at 1 a.m. on Saturdays and at midnight the rest of the week in search of later closing times. These people often make dangerous round trips to Austin or San Antonio and back, endangering themselves and others.

Supporters feel that the solution to this problem is to give people the opportunity to stay in San Marcos, keeping our drivers off dangerous Interstate-35 late at night. We have seen too many results of San Marcos drivers coming back from Austin because of our limited closing time. According to the University Star, Texas State’s student newspaper, Councilwoman Pam Couch echoed this concern, saying, “I just want to get the kids off Interstate 35.”

Proponents of the referendum cite the safety of our citizens as the key reason for their support of this referendum.

Hospitality San Marcos S-PAC was formed to advocate the passage of this referendum.

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