By John Ostapkovich
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Philadelphia City Council and the State Legislature will both be asked to think outside the bar, or at least bar hours.
City Councilwoman Blondell Reynolds Brown and an ally in the state house are introducing companion bills to allow city bars to serve alcohol until 3 a.m., an hour later than currently. This would require state and city authorization, which is why the two front approach.
Reynolds Brown says the point of this is to raise money for education by directing the by-the-drink taxes from that extra hour to the school district.
“When we fully accept the fact that education is the single biggest indicator of success and the greatest deterrent to crime, we need to do more in finding new revenue streams.”
Reynolds Brown says she’s opening this idea for discussion and expects differences of opinion even among bar owners and residents in Center City and the neighborhoods. She pegs the extra revenue at $5 million a year, enough for some athletic and arts and music programs.