A coalition of public health groups, law enforcement, and businesses have joined together to oppose to a plan to relax state alcohol rules.
A report by the state Office of Regulatory Reinvention called for the Legislature to make it easier for businesses such as gas stations and farmers markets to sell beer, wine, and liquor. The ORR made more than 70 recommendations in June to change the state’s liquor control system. But some police, public health, and business groups say the proposed changes would lead to more alcohol-related crimes and violence. Bob Stevenson directs the Michigan Association of Chiefs of Police. He says the ORR failed to include police in the process.
"In the original committee there was no local law enforcement," Stevenson says. "Had we been included we could have brought these concerns out, but we were not.”
ORR officials say they don’t think access to alcohol would significantly increase. In fact, they say, some of their recommendations would make streets and homes safer.