Hermosa Beach : Alcohol Banned at Gas Sites

The City Council voted this week to ban the sale of alcohol where gasoline is sold, but the state Legislature is considering a bill that could nullify the local law soon after it takes effect.

Hermosa Beach has three gasoline stations, one of which sells beer and wine, according to the business license department. The city attorney said the law, which takes effect in mid-May, will only affect new gasoline stations.

Mayor Pro Tem Etta Simpson said the ban is a way of discouraging drinking and driving.

But a bill sponsored by state Assemblyman Gary Condit (D-Ceres) would take away the authority of cities and counties to impose blanket bans on gasoline and alcohol sales at the same site, and would nullify any such ban enacted after Aug. 1, 1985. Along with Hermosa Beach, at least 30 other cities in California have a ban that would be eliminated if the bill is approved.

The bill, promoted by convenience store and oil industries, would allow local governments to enact such bans after reviewing applications on a case-by-case basis.

The bill is scheduled to be heard by the Assembly's Governmental Organization Committee on May 5.

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