Updated 07/04/2012 07:15 AM
Last call debate ends in Saratoga Springs
Saratoga City Council's quest to move last call in the city from 4 a.m. to 3 a.m. ended Monday when the county's Legislative and Research Committee voted it down. Our Erin Vannella tells us why there are mixed feelings about the decision.
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SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. -- "They don't get out of work 'til midnight, 12:30. By the time they go home, change, they don't get here until 2:00," said Gaffney's bartender Valori Ness.
Saratoga bartenders are happy the county's Legislative and Research Committee voted 5-1 against advancing the City Council's proposal to move last call from 4 a.m. to 3 a.m.
"It's very lucrative," said Ness. "There's plenty of times I've doubled the amount of money I would've made just by being open til 4."
The City Council has spent three years addressing the issue, covering more than just bar revenue. The sole county supporter said the proposal addressed quality of life.
"We're not making these things up," said Saratoga County Supervisor Joanne Yepsen. "There are real incidents. The police have been looking at this and how they can reschedule themselves, how they can do more overtime. This is costing the taxpayers a tremendous amount of money to stay open that one extra hour."
Yepsen said it's unfortunate the county had to vote on a city issue, and wishes her fellow board members had spent more time considering the city's research before rushing to a vote.
"When we reach a threshold that our city is no longer the city people come here for because it turns into something different in the middle of the night, then we have to look at it," said Yepsen.
But others who voted against the proposal say the city is capable of handling some problems on its own.
"Truthfully I think the city's taken a lot of steps already to fix the problem," said Saratoga County Supervisor Matthew Veitch. "I think they've done a pretty good job with that. I don't believe the 3 a.m. closing time is a step that would've made drastic changes."