From David McAuley. Email at david[AT]borderstan.com
At its meeting last night (February 13), Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 2B‘s discussion on the controversial 14th and U Liquor License Moratorium was limited to procedural issues. No public comment, for or against the proposal itself, was solicited or accepted by the committee. No members of the public attempted to speak about the moratorium during the part of the meeting when the Commission addressed it.
“Look for public meetings in late March,” said Kevin O’Connor, commissioner for ANC 2B-02, and chairman of the Alcohol Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA) Policy Committee — referring to a previous proposal to hold a joint committee meeting of the ANCs that fall within the boundaries of the proposed moratorium. This proposal for a joint committee was first passed as a resolution at the meeting of Logan Circle area ANC 2F on February 6. It was discussed and characterized as a “super-committee” at the U Street area ANC 1B meeting on February 7.
“It sends a better message if we coordinate,” O’Connor also said.
Commissioner Noah Smith (ANC 2B-09) said that calling the joint meeting a “super-committee” was inaccurate. He said that the joint meetings should be considered “listening sessions”, in which the commissioners will hear the opinions of the community. No votes would be taken at the joint meetings, Smith said.
Smith also disagreed with an opinion expressed by supporters of the moratorium. Supporters, said Smith, had asserted that local communities would not be effected if it did not fall within the proposed boundaries of the moratorium. Smith said that communities near the proposed moratorium will be effected as well.
Dupont Circle is currently the site of two existing liquor license moratoriums, one at Dupont West (centered at the corner of 21st and P Streets NW), and the other on 17th Street NW. The 17th Street liquor license moratorium is due to expire in September 2013, according to the committee.
Earlier in the same meeting, ANC2B voted unanimously in favor of widening the availability of growlers in the Dupont area. Owing to a gap in DC’s recent omnibus ABRA legislation, local liquor and grocery stores in certain parts of DC were not allowed to sell growlers without local ANC permission. ANC2B’s vote means that all liquor and grocery stores in its jurisdiction that have already received permission to sell single units of alcohol in other forms will now be able to sell growlers as well.