I don't even know where to begin in criticizing Racine's new liquor ordinance. But let us start with the facts. The ordinance, which passed last night with only aldermen Shields and Coe dissenting, pertains only to establishments that sell liquor for off premises consumption. In other words, it does not apply to bars and restaurants. New establisments would need to be at least 1000 feet from another establishment and 300 feet from any place predominantly attended by those under the age of 21, including schools and churches. The total number of such establishments shall not exceed 60, though there are presently 66 in the city. And finally, license applicants "will have to show that they will substantially improve the city's tax base and have a greater impact than simply adding another convenience store" according to the JT article on the subject. A two thirds vote of the city council would be needed to circumvent the new rules.
Or, in other words, do not even think about opening a convenience store or grocery store in the city of Racine without seriously sucking up to the city council.
The first casualty of the new ordinance is one Caroline Chun who had wanted to open a convenience/liquor store on 6th Street. Start grovelling Ms Chun.
6th Street was at one time the recipient, or victim, of the city's attempt to create an arts district. The city's micromanagement of 6th Street as the Heart of the Arts has been an obvious failure. But their latest venture, called the Vacant Building Initiative, is off to a great start.