H-SAN LUIS OBISPO COUNTY

Aug 29, 2013 8:25 PM by Connie Tran, KSBY News

AB 461 gets signed; gives SLO Co. more liquor licenses

Thanks to a new bill, some restaurants and bars in San Luis Obispo County could soon be able to serve hard alcohol if they weren't able to already.

Governor Jerry Brown approved Assembly Bill 461, which will grant San Luis Obispo County five additional liquor licenses within the next three years.

There are restaurants all throughout SLO County that have either full liquor licenses, beer and wine licenses, or no liquor licenses at all.

Some local restaurants think a liquor license does make a difference.

Guiseppe Difronzo, manager and bartender at Guiseppe's in downtown SLO, said, "I think it brings in, like I said, a bigger clientele. It allows you to have a different menu and try out new things and appeal to more people, and it definitely allows you to sell more and make more money, so I think it definitely does help a lot of places, especially if they're already struggling."

Difronzo said that people who are going to get martinis are probably more likely to spend more money on dinner.

Brett Collins, general manager at Splash Cafe, said their beer and wine license is enough.

"I think it's very convenient for customers who have a beer, sit out outside, enjoy the atmosphere," Collins said.

Assemblyman Katcho Achadjian said that he realized struggling businesses are not able to afford the current price tag of at least $100,000 for a liquor license in SLO County.

That number is a result of high demand and a small number of licenses available.

AB 461 will provide five additional licenses, at a price tag of $13,800 apiece.

Any restaurant that has a seating capacity of 50 people or more will be eligible to apply.

The law will go into effect on January 1st, 2014.

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