Thursday, February 07, 2008
Williams' Under Age Drinking Law Falls Short
Former Ulster County District Attorney Don Williams' proposed local law that would prohibit minors from consuming alcohol on private property will be voted on next month by the Ulster County Legislature. Williams first proposed the law in December and in concept it's a good idea, however there is room for improvement.
As written, the law appears only to define terms, define the offense, indicate that there can be exceptions, as spelled out by the state’s Alcohol Beverage Control Law … such as for religious observances... and set a penalty, of not more than 15 days in jail, or a fine of not more than $250.
Don Williams says this at least will start an educational process.... however, it's the educational process that is lacking.
In my opinion there should some sort of educational process tagged on to this law especially when your dealing with kids..having their parents pay a $250 fine does not address the root cause of the problem.
There is also the issue of how the punishment will be given, if your a middle class family I'm sure that you will pay the $25o fine and be on your way. If your struggling and having a hard time making ends meet, then I guess you do the 15 days in jail..sound fair and just?
I urge the Ulster County Legislature to bring this back to committee and look into all of this with a little more detail before it's rushed into law.
Posted by Jeremy Blaber at 4:07 PM