Posted by on Feb 25th, 2016 and filed under Viewpoints. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

Voices Needed at Starbucks Meeting

Anyone who understands me knows I speak up for safety, for the kids and the community. I was a grassroots member of the CV Drug & Alcohol Prevention Coalition, which takes stock in the youth and helps them always have a safe place to go that is drug and alcohol free. I learned that Starbucks (Montrose) is asking for the right to serve beer and wine and was approached by some community members to stand up and say something!

According to the Alcohol Beverage and Control (ABC) website, Montrose has 30 licensed restaurants and bars, plus 10 market/liquor stores within a few short blocks of Honolulu Avenue. In contrast, only five eateries do not serve alcohol. In the letter dated Dec. 10, 2015 from Roger Kiesel, Planning hearing officer, Glendale, it is stated “the addition of Starbucks will only slightly increase this over-concentration of alcoholic service … there is an over-concentration of licenses…”

If particular conditions are met, it is possible that Starbucks (Montrose) will be granted the right to serve alcohol. Starbucks will open the bar as early as 4 p.m.; however, in Napa, they moved that time up to noon. They will be relocating any employee who is under 21 as they cannot (per Starbucks) serve alcohol.

In its October 2015 meeting, the Burbank City Council voted against Starbucks Evenings [program] as it was too close to schools and parking was a huge factor – sound familiar? Even though there are no “schools” in the immediate area, there are lots of businesses that work with children and youth: Revolution Dance Studio, Color Me Mine, many martial arts studios with kids and tutors in the immediate area.

The question I keep hearing is, “Why Montrose?” According to Starbucks consultant Keith Glassman, Montrose is a walking community where people are out during the evening hours, strolling or walking their dogs. Starbucks intends to capitalize on that person (by selling them a $12 glass of beer or wine).

Parents, you feel safe with your kids in Montrose after school or on the weekends. Starbucks stated in a public meeting three years ago, they would never penetrate our community (because it was a bad fit) by bringing in the alcohol – they lied.

I’m not against Starbucks or even enjoying a glass of wine. I am representing all those who are opposed to Starbucks [serving] beer and wine in Montrose. It’s a bad fit; take it somewhere else. Here are a few ideas, Starbucks: contact the Americana, Pasadena Paseo, the Grove, or 3rd Street Promenade.

I wonder if Starbucks ever thought of the revenue they have the potential to lose from the young people who patronize them every day after school and on the weekends with their dates. Serving alcohol will alienate the young population from Starbucks (Go, Coffee Bean!). I’ve talked to dozens of young people and they don’t want to be around it! They’re telling me they’ll go elsewhere, and parents, you’re telling me that you won’t allow your kids to go to Starbucks anymore.

There is a public hearing with me and representatives from Starbucks and the City of Glendale on March 2 at 5 p.m. for the City of Glendale to hear from the community. Whether you oppose the idea it or think it’s great, bring your voice, stand up, be counted, be heard – this is the place for the public to speak up!

Did you know there are only five eateries that do not serve alcohol in Montrose!

Kim Mattersteig
La Crescenta

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