Partying in West Hollywood just got a lot more fun. This week, the West Hollywood City Council came to a 3-2 vote extending last call at bars, clubs and restaurants.
The Southern California neighborhood is hoping to make the last call time 4 a.m. It’s currently 2 a.m.
There still needs to be approval from California state.
West Hollywood City Councilmember John Erickson says, “As a young person and young elected official, I see my friends out there way past 2 a.m., but also we have public safety concerns. We want to make sure people are getting home safely. And when people are leaving our bars and nightlife, they’re going into other cities so what do other cities think?”
The measure was vetoed in 2018. If its passed by the state, local bars, restaurants and nightclubs can decide to implement the new call time or not.
Locals are here for it
After the pandemic, some locals are here for the later call time and see its benefits.
Shania Johnson, a professional dancer, tells Fox LA, “I feel like a lot of employees could benefit from making more money in that after-hours area just because there’s so much money to be made in nightlife. I feel like more people start to go out after midnight so why would we stop serving at 2 a.m., especially when all the big cities like New York, Chicago, Miami, Las Vegas, all of them are open ‘till 4 a.m.”
DJ Olivia Paulson says, “I DJ in West Hollywood at all these bars, I do notice that people stay out very late and come out very late so I know the bars would benefit a lot from it.”
Locals who aren’t here for it
Although the later call time would be beneficial to local establishments, some locals think the extended time is too much.
Patricia Rillera, Mothers Against Drunk Drivers’ California State Executive Director says, “The most devastating tragedy that I think I’ve ever seen is a victim of a drunk and drug driving crash. That is a 100% preventable crime.”
MADD statistics show that DUI deaths occur between midnight and 4 a.m. This number has increased during the pandemic by 20% even though there were 11% less cars on the road.
“A mother or father who loses a child, that grief is just as fresh if its 10 years, 20 years, as if it just happened hours ago. So the devastation is just not worth it,” says Rillera.
Currently, San Francisco, Oakland, Coachella, Fresno, Palm Springs, and Cathedral City are also testing this program.