Letters to the Editor

Downtown ordinance will hurt

As the owner of a small business in downtown Modesto, I am frustrated over the proposed "entertainment ordinance."

The city appears to be making a blanket ordinance to solve a problem to which my business has not contributed.

The ordinance purports to come from the problems that have arisen at establishments (which provide alcohol) whose patrons have created additional expenses for the police force.

I agree that this is a problem. My small business has not contributed to this problem, but will be negatively affected by the ordinance. This ordinance, if passed, would add one more permit to the many that I have to take out. Because we have live music on Friday and Saturday evenings, I would be required to pay yet another fee in order to continue to do so.

My little business has consumed all of my savings as I have fulfilled all of the city's requirements. I understand and agree with almost all of these requirements, but do not understand nor agree with the proposed new one.

Even the draft ordinance (taken from The Bee's Web site) states: "The Council also recognizes that many nonalcoholic entertainment establishments provide a safe place for families and young adults to gather."

That is the type of establishment that I have. From what I can see, alcohol has been the primary contributing factor in creating the additional expenditures for the police. Why, then, would all entertainment establishments have to incur new expenses, even if they do not provide alcohol?

I ask that the city consider carefully before creating a blanket ordinance that will affect small businesses.

RICHARD BRAUN

owner and manager, Semplicitá Coffee House

Modesto

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