I am responding to your article regarding our local restaurant owners desiring to lead classes in training their employees on serving alcohol in a responsible manner ("Group addresses drinking", Dec. 8). I heartily applaud and appreciate Marco Perry's efforts in helping to find solutions to the alcohol problems that exist in the downtown area; however I must disagree with some of his statements.
He states that there is an exaggerated reputation for mayhem in Huntington Beach and that it "irritates" him "when people who don't know this community that well paint Huntington Beach as three blocks of drunken kids who are out of control." I have been a resident of downtown Huntington Beach for 13 years and do know the area well, and frankly, "drunken kids who are out of control" depicts an accurate picture of the area. I am not saying that this occurs all the time, but if Perry lived here during the U.S. Open of Surfing, the Fourth of July or the summer months in general, that's exactly what's going on. I have given up on calling the police when the drunks are screaming, urinating, fighting and destroying my property and just try to ignore it.
Our city leaders, police department and restaurant owners must realize that it's simplistic to think that the restaurants (bars) are the only causes of our problems. While speaking to an employee of the CVS at the corner of Pacific Coast Highway and Sixth Street, I was horrified to hear that the store was literally being "looted" the entire week of the U.S. Open. There were throngs of young people shoplifting alcohol bottles and whole cases of beer from the store, and they felt helpless to combat it. I did notice the presence of a security guard toward the end of the week; however, he looked rather overwhelmed.
My neighbors and I are constantly pulling various alcohol containers out of our shrubs and, on numerous occasions, have seen people drinking in their cars before heading off to Main Street. The conclusion that must be drawn is that we need to monitor and deal with multiple sources of alcohol flowing into our downtown area.
One thumb up for ex-mayor…
Regarding the question "How do you feel about the job Joe Carchio has done as mayor?" ("Council selects new mayor," Dec. 8):
I think he did a very good job. He is a real "hometown boy" — he did great honoring our Ocean View Little League, and the parade was great. He reminded me of some of our past mayors years back that were really interested in the people of the city and interacting with their thoughts and ideas.
…and one thumb down for Carchio
Joe Carchio was the best mayor Huntington Beach ever had — for the special interests.