In anticipation of today's City Council Safety Summit, Speaker Quinn held a press briefing to announce some of the key legislative initiatives that the council will seek to enact in the next few months. As the Alliance's Richard Lipsky told Newsday, however, "...the legislation addresses security issues with a 'broad brush.' Cameras won't deter crime, Lipsky said, arguing that the council should take action against specific establishments rather than all of them."
Unfortunately a number of initiatives that could actually make a difference are not getting the kind of legislative attention that they should. The first, paid detail, is on the Summit agenda for discussion today but, at least according to a story in the NY Post, is already being second guessed because of a concern that the police commissioner won't support it; "Lawmakers said...that Police Commissioner Ray Kelly is so opposed to the idea that they are now considering abandoning it..."
Well, way to go! A measure that could engender a safer nightlife environment might not be considered because one mayoral appointee thinks that it's not a good idea. What is a good idea according to this perspective is to focus all of the public's attention on the city's nightlife businesses and make their ability to grow and prosper more difficult.
We can only hope that the Council exhibits greater courage in this matter. This would also mean a willingness to target underage drinkers themselves and the firms that peddle false IDs. Otherwise, as we said in an earlier Op-ed piece, the welcome wagon for nightlife in this city will continue to be staffed by "hostile prohibitionists."