License Creep

For the past seven months, members of the Pacific Beach Planning Group have studied alcohol-related issues in Pacific Beach. On June 14, they presented their findings during a “special meeting.”

Scott Chipman, chairman of the group’s alcohol license review committee, said, “Alcohol-related crime is 19 percent higher in Pacific Beach than the rest of San Diego.” A community member’s response to that statement was, “Alcohol-related crime was 19 percent higher in P.B. because that's where 90 percent of the drinking happens.”

“[The state Alcoholic Beverage Control bureau] doesn’t get a lot of complaints from P.B. — everyone needs to know that,” said Marcie Beckett, identifying herself as having been with the Pacific Beach Planning Group for five years. Beckett took turns presenting alongside Chipman, and Jennifer Hill of the ABC was present.

When asked to comment on the issue, Hill said, “This is a land-use issue, and ABC doesn’t get involved in that.”

Beckett said, “We’re not blaming [restaurants]…they’re just taking advantage of the policy…they’re morphing. We have lots of restaurants that don’t create problems."

Which restaurants does the group consider “problem” restaurants? During the meeting, references were made to the P.B. Shore Club, Hooters (soon to “morph” into “Beachwood”), and Bub’s Dive Bar.

Following the meeting, police captain Chris Ball said, “We will follow up to see how we can be more effective in addressing the community needs. Some points made are valid…like the morphing issue, which I like to call ‘license creep’ — first they want spirits, then live entertainment…then open till 2 a.m. However, I do not agree with the comment that P.B. is dangerous. One of the challenges we are faced with is that most of the crime being discussed, as it relates specifically to alcohol, are patron-on-patron crimes. I would underscore this statement…P.B. is a safe place to live.”

For video of the meeting, click here.

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Let's get the numbers right. Pacific Beach has 19 TIMES the City's alcohol-related crimes rate. Not 19% higher. Big difference.

What do you mean exactly by "19 times the City's alcohol-related crimes"?

PB is part of San Diego, so it can have just a portion of the alcohol problems, not to exceed 100%, but your statement makes it sound as if PB has 1900% more alcohol crime than the City, which is not possible.

This blog is a followup to the earlier "Bring Your Own Concerns

and I urge your readers to also read that blog as there were almost 60 comments that ALSO APPLY to this continuing story of PB's desire to reduce BOTH their Crime and the number of new alcohol venues which are being added despite the opposition of PB's affected citizens, SDPD vice and even CA-ABC!

How many is too many?

Why should the folks of PB have to live with the fact that they have the most CRIME in the City of San Diego and also the most ALCOHOL Licenses is not helping reduce their problems...

Surf Puppy, This will make you Bark!

Per their handout "Pacific Beach Census Tracts... for 2008": PB Census Tract 79.01 Garnet, Mission has 1176 Crimes which is 1916 % of City Tract Average in the Alcohol-Related Crime (with the data provided by Joe Dalton, Crime Analyst, SDPD)...

see http://www.pbspirits.com/ for this and more info:

The problem is not the businesses. The problem is two fold: 1) As property values in PB rose, many residents saw their properties as an investment rather than a place to live. As residents sold and/or rented their properties PB's transient population grew. Of course businesses that cater to a more transient population will flourish. 2) The rules are flawed. The state of California sets the rules for how restaurants/bars operate. The businesses in PB follow the rules. I think opponents of those businesses should be lobbying their elected officials to have the rules changed. Not only would it be more effective, but also less contentious and divisive.


If all of the businesses 'followed' the rules, PB would not have as many dui's. If there was more enforcement there would be even more statistics. As it is, there is not enough enforcement to go around, due to City budgets. Other areas have needs for police, too! ABC doesn't have the ability to enforce either!

When you have too many of something, there is a problem. Businesses that would improve the area won't come, due to the the reputation and high-crime associated with it. Businesses that feed into the reputation currently in place are creating more of a problem.

The census tract in which PB Shore Club is located, has alcohol-related crime that is 19 times the city average

It is 19 times the City AVERAGE*

Not "19 TIMES the City's alcohol-related crimes rate".

So that was the difference,. Now, 19 times the city average is a big difference in it's own right.

Check www.pbSpirits.com for descriptions, stats, stories and more. Feel free to comment on anything.

The 19x rate is all the alcohol arrests and citations in the City of San Diego divided by the number of census tracts - which are usually shaped to include approximately 5,000 residents.

The 79.01 tract (maps on site) roughly includes Mission Blvd and Garnet up to Fanuel. The guidelines for giving new licenses is only if the area is 1.2 the percentage of the citywide average whereas this tract in PB (79.01) is 19x.


RE: Your #1 I maintain that as the quality of life changes in a neighborhood, ever more Owners are forced to relocate in an effort to maintain their previous level of lifestyle! As more "cool" folks leave, the homes, condos and Apt's are then filled by folks that do not have the same feelings. This is what changes an area! In North Park, when the first Big Club arrived locals could not believe that one business could be such a "game changer"; business's that are not neighborhood friendly just increase the rate of change, as more similar business's start replacing the local Business's that used to cater to the "Cool" folks!

RE: Your #2, Yes the ABC rules are flawed; that is exactly why so many folks in PB are mobilizing to inform the general population, both in PB and around San Diego! We need more City Wide meetings about ABC issues; and I for one look forward to some State wide relief, unless the Alcohol Lobby does to US, what the Oil Lobby is doing to the USA!

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