On Tuesday, the Santa Cruz City Council approved the acceptance of a $45,000 grant awarded to the Santa Cruz Police Department by the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control. Alcohol-related arrests constitute the highest number of arrests in the City of Santa Cruz. In fact, approximately 40% of all arrests made by the Santa Cruz Police Department have an alcohol component. The greatest concentration of these arrests occur within the downtown corridor, a one square mile area with over fifty alcohol outlets in a census tract that suggests no more than eleven. Unfortunately, a number of these arrests and alcohol-related problems are the direct result of over-serving, minors in possession of alcohol and binge drinking. The Santa Cruz Police Department believes that an effective education and enforcement campaign will help address these issues.
In an effort to address these alcohol-related issues, the Santa Cruz Police Department applied for funding from the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control. The competitive grant sought funding for education, prevention and enforcement activities related to alcohol. Specifically, this grant funding will be used to help prevent minors from consuming alcohol, businesses from selling alcohol to minors and in the education of students and business owners around alcohol-related issues. The Santa Cruz Police Department has received funding from the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control in the past and has been noted as a model agency in terms of alcohol education.