ROBBINSDALE, MN -- Make no mistake, the showdown in St. Paul is wreaking havoc in every Minnesota city.So why would that be?
On Thursday night, the kick off for Robbinsdale's annual Whiz Bang Days got kicked in the pants.
The wine and beer tasting at Sacred Heart Catholic School that people come to by the hundreds was cancelled due to the state not being able to process the liquor license.
All licenses to sell alcohol, either for a fundraiser or a full blown bar have to be handed down by the Department of Public Safety's alcohol enforcement division and they aren't open.And Shortal has the parade of victims lined up and ready to march:
"They are closed and that is one of the sad realities of the shutdown, some services we aren't going to be able to provide," DPS spokesman Doug Neville said.
And so even though the Sacred Heart school held up their end of the bargain and paid for the license it didn't get done.Let's stipulate that everything in this report is true; there's no reason to suspect otherwise. But don't you have any other questions about this? I do:
The main fundraiser for the school was called off.
"It affects all the small people, our catholic school; it might affect scholarships coming to the school so that trickles down to the kids in the state of Minnesota," [Sacred Heart Prinicipal Karen] Bursey said.
The five thousand dollars raised at the wine tasting will not come in and the money already paid to hold the event is lost too.
- Why is licensing for liquor a state matter in the first place? Is this not a function that could be handled at the county, or even municipal level? If the issue is one of uniformity, it would not be difficult to draft model language that could be used as a guideline at lower levels of government.
- Would it not make more sense to have such functions handled at a lower level anyway? I would be willing to wager that the City of Robbinsdale would know if there were any adverse effects related to the staging of this event, i.e., police reports, property damage, etc. I also assume that Sacred Heart isn't serving Thunderbird or hard liquor at this event, so it should be an easy thing to process a license.
- If this is an annual event of long standing, as it appears to be, why must Sacred Heart go through the hassle and expense of reapplying every year? Is there a compelling reason, other than job security for the bureaucrats at DPS who process the forms, to require a renewal of the license every year? Could you not design a limited liquor license that is date- and event-specific and that ran for, say, 5 years?