Letter: Liquor licenses increase but no funding of recovery services is contemplated

Published: Tuesday, June 26 2012 12:01 a.m. MDT

Assistant manager George Pence arranges the alcohol at a State liquor store in Salt Lake City, Utah, Thursday, May 27, 2010. An increase in UHP man-hours is funded by the proposed increase in licenses and fees in an effort to minimize the expected negative consequences of broadened and increased consumption.

Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

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I am worried about the proposed increase in the number of liquor licenses. I recognize alcohol is a legitimate product sold to the adult public. I was not alive during Prohibition and do not advocate its return. My concern is that alcohol is recognized as having serious negative personal and societal consequences for the consumer, the family and the public at large.

I am one of four children who grew up in an alcohol-abusive home and have seen and experienced the personal and collateral damage caused by alcoholism. I find it interesting that an increase in UHP man-hours is funded by the proposed increase in licenses and fees in an effort to minimize the expected negative consequences of broadened and increased consumption. Interestingly, no increase in funding of recovery services is contemplated.

I suggest enacting a serious dram-shop law making serving entities liable for real and punitive damages caused by impaired patrons as a method, acknowledged as after the fact, to permit legitimate consumption yet mitigate potential negative outcomes of over indulgence. The administration and Legislature appear determined to sacrifice public health and safety on the altar of economic development.

David R. Shorten

Salt Lake City

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