Miami Beach to push for alcohol sales curfew, commissioner says

Miami Beach Commissioner Steven Meiner said the city will likely appeal a judge’s decision against a 2 a.m. ban on alcohol sales.

The judge sided with bars and restaurants in the entertainment district to allow alcohol sales to go on without disruption until 5 a.m. Mango’s Tropical Cafe owner David Wallack celebrated the Tuesday decision.

“Those people out in the street, they’re not buying alcohol at $15 and $18 a drink. They are going to wholesale liquor stores,” Wallack said, adding, “They have it in the trunk of their cars along with whatever drugs they’re doing out there.”

The city’s 2 a.m. curfew was to go into effect from March 7 to March 21. Meiner and other commissioners said the ban was part of an effort to curb crime during spring break. Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber said they were disappointed.

“Our city seems to be held hostage by a handful of all-night bars whose business model foments the disorder and chaos that endangers our residents, visitors, and cops,” Gelber said in a statement.

Spring break is dangerous for Miami Beach police officers, the mayor said. Nearly 20 were injured during spring break 2019 and 10 were injured during last year’s spring break, according to Gelber.

“No city should be held hostage in this manner,” Gelber said.

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