Drink Down The City of Dallas's Response to Dry Side's Motion For Summary Judgment

Categories: City Hall
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The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission continues to dole out those permits to the would-be beer and wine sellers of Dallas. The 21-page of list of March sweepstakes winners alone, which follows, includes a handful of Aldi locations (from the one at Forest and Audelia to the grocery at Illinois and Hampton), gas stations along LBJ and Stemmons, and numerous Oak Cliff and southern Dallas convenience stores -- all of which, of course, were dry till the November referendum allowing for the off-premise sale of beer and wine citywide. Which, of course, liquor retailers and a Dallas Area Rapid Transit board member and a real-estater are all trying to overturn in Dallas County Court.

A September court date had been set at the end of January, but two weeks later Leland de la Garza, one of the attorneys fighting to overturn the election, filed a motion for summary judgment, claiming yet again that City Secretary Deborah Watkins erred when she said there were enough legit signatures on those Keep the Dollars in Dallas petitions turned in last May. A hearing has been set for April 19. At the time the mammoth motion was filed last month, First Assistant City Attorney Chris Bowers told Unfair Park: "We will be filing an equally massive response. We will have a vigorous defense, and I am not losing sleep over their summary judgment motion."

That response was filed at the end of last week, runs 112 pages (including copious exhibits) and follows in full. Long story short: The city says Watkins did nothing wrong: "There is no evidence that the City Secretary made a mistake, engaged in improper conduct, or violated the Election Code by the form or manner of her certification of the petition" when she told the city council to call the wet-dry election in June. Jump, but do not drive. Dallas Response to Wet-Dry Summary JudgmentMarch TBA Beer Wine Permits
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17 comments
abuckley1970
abuckley1970

As hard up as the city is for money, I would think the taxes from the sale of beer and wine would be welcomed considering there are other cities on the fringe, such as Balch Springs, reaping those tax dollars from Dallas citizens. People are going to drink. Period. Why not keep the money inside the city to the extent possible? The vote wasn't allowing hard liqour citywide - just beer/wine for on or off-premise consumption. Liquor stores will not be able to open in the dry overlay areas so I'm having a little trouble seeing the big deal. I'm fishing for comments against the vote.

Robert Wilonsky
Robert Wilonsky

On a very related note, anyone know where a guy can find Old Fitzgerald? I bought a bottle at the Centennial on Ross three weeks ago, went back Saturday for a refill, only to find out NO ONE in town -- not GG, not Centennial, not Sigel's, not nobody -- carries it any longer. Though, really, the 10-year-old Evan Williams is pretty, pretty good ... especially at $11-12 a bottle.

Amy S.
Amy S.

We are getting our new license soon, no more "club" - it will help us stay competitive on pricing. But if Dallas loses this fight, possibly no more restaurant, either.

In this way I can relate to the fight. Those behind the lawsuit are fighting to keep their businesses in business. My neighborhood Tom Thumb has gone from 0 to 4th in wine and beer sales in Dallas - that came from some other retailer's cash register.

Downtown Resident
Downtown Resident

How much money are the liquor retailers willing to piss away on lawyers in their quixotic cause?

Chris Danger
Chris Danger

Have any of these people heard of something called "The End Of Prohibition". Christ almighty on a flaming upside down cross, when will these idiots just call it a day and have a drink w/ the rest of us thirsty souls..

Amy S.
Amy S.

Is the half-gallon size too large ($33.99 retail)? Glenda in accounting at Sigel's told me she might be able to find at one of their retail stores and reship.

Wylie H.
Wylie H.

Some of those sales no doubt come at the expense of existing "BIG LIQUOR;" but I'd be willing to bet that a fair amount is incremental new business--- people picking up beer or wine to go with dinner that would otherwise just have water or soda because they don't feel like making a special trip to the liquor store.

Also, there are a fair number of people who just don't like going to liquor stores--- they are happy to buy stuff that's sold in grocery stores, but get turned off (rightly or wrongly) by their perception of what sort of folks hang out in liquor stores.

Mike3647
Mike3647

But the retailers still have a monopoly in hard liquor, and it is a an anomaly that they don't have to compete with grocery stores like most places. Hell, in CA grocery stores can sell the hard stuff and there are still plenty of liquor stores.

DoubleOJoe
DoubleOJoe

Chris, it's not that the opponents want us not to drink. It's that they want us to drink what we buy from them. There's no desire to save people from the demon drink; it's a desire to maintain their monopoly.

Mike3647
Mike3647

Oh they drink alright. They just get their alcohol from the liquor stores they own - Goody Goody, Big Daddy's/Centennial and Segels.

That's why I get my hard stuff elsewhere and really love giving my beer money to the Albertson by my house.

Robert Wilonsky
Robert Wilonsky

Nope. That's just what I am looking for ...

Apparently, they're about all gone.

Steve
Steve

That reminds me of when i used to go to the Centennial down by Whiterock Lake and a lot of the time their employees looked like they were only about a week out of prison, but once you talked to them you realized they were nice as can be and knew their booze.

Amy S.
Amy S.

Yeah, but Mike, the number of licensees that sell hard liquor also needed the beer and wine sales that go with for their profits. Now, they are losing total sales, and you will see some close. Many other states are the same, with grocery store selling hard liquor, but you see very few "real" liquor stores compared to Dallas.

Chris Danger
Chris Danger

Mike, This is why states such as NM and CA have it together when it comes to selling liquor in grocery/drug stores seven days a week. Im all for it, but its going to have to be a push from the state house to allow consumer choice, not to mention putting the distribution "companies" (i.e. legal mafia) into their place as well, by changing the way product is sold to stores in TX..

Amy S.
Amy S.

This was easier than finding a 6 pack of Stroh's.

Amy S.
Amy S.

Used to do the books for about 300 liquor stores in Watts, they were all also mini-groceries as well.

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