Casper Mayor Doesn’t Drink and Drive Anymore; 25 Businesses Failed Alcohol Compliance Check
On Tuesday, the Casper City Council discussed the annual liquor license renewal process for Casper businesses, along with City Clerk Fleur Tremel and Deputy Police Chief Shane Chaney, and City Manager Carter Napier.
All three men agreed that there were no issues regarding the renewal of liquor licenses.
"For those of you who are new, this is a process you will have to anticipate going through every year," Napier told the council. "You are the licensing authority for every liquor license that's issued within the city limits of Casper. Part of your exercise in that regard is reviewing the year that we just got through to determine whether or not the performance that you've seen, with respect to your license orders is satisfactory, whether or not there are things you want to look into further and, historically, it's also been a time to question licenses that have been parked, to determine if any action is needed during the review period."
Luckily for Casper businesses, Napier, Tremel and Chaney stated that they didn't see any reason not to renew the licenses for all businesses, but there were some statistics that Casper Mayor Bruce Knell found troubling.
While Deputy Chief Chaney stated that the number of alcohol-related incidents is down from 2020, there was an increase in businesses failing alcohol compliance checks.
According to data collected by the Casper Police Department, 25 businesses in Casper failed these alcohol compliance checks, which is from from 15 in 2021.
"In accordance with the State of Wyoming grant funding, multiple compliance operations were conducted during the calendar year," Casper Police Chief Keith McPheeters wrote in a memo to the City Manager. "Twenty-five (25) businesses failed the compliance check, up 67% from the fifteen (15) that occurred the prior year. Only one (1) establishment had more than one failure during this year's compliance operations. However, three (3) establishments from this year also failed a compliance check last year."
Casper Mayor Bruce Knell stated that he was "shocked" by the number of businesses who failed the compliance checks.
"In this day and age especially," Mayor Knell stated, "when it comes to alcohol-related crimes, whether it's DUI, MIP, selling to a minor - I mean, everybody knows. There's literally no excuse anymore for it. And I guess that's what I find so frustrating. Even me. I'm not gonna sit here and say I've never gone out and had a few drinks and did drive, but I can tell you I don't do it now. There's Uber, there's Sober Driver, whatever. I don't take those chances anymore. But people do. Every day. And I get it. But selling to minors...We're dealing with such mental health stuff right now and trying to find ways to help in that area. Minors' brains aren't even ready for this stuff yet, so it just bothers me so much."
To see the establishments that were cited for failing compliance checks, you can read the memo from Chief McPheeters at this link.
The Council will further discuss renewing liquor licenses at next week's City Council Meeting.
The video of the Casper City Council Work Session can be seen in full below: