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More liquor permits makes free-market sense

In regard to the debate over whether to issue an unlimited number of liquor licenses downtown, it is important to highlight a few points.

First, a larger number of establishments at which people can buy alcohol does not translate into a higher number of binge drinkers, more alcohol-related problems or any other such phenomena.

Second, more liquor licenses result in increased competition among the holders. If there are more competitors for a static number of customers, it stands to reason that the quality of the establishments will increase in an effort to attract customers.

Third, obtaining a liquor license is one of, if not the, highest expense associated with starting a restaurant. Eliminating this expense will result in more consumer choices.

Enabling more small businesses to grow downtown will increase the quality of restaurant choices. It will not result in additional alcohol-related problems, and it will serve as notice that Fort Wayne is a city that supports free market capitalism.

If the people don’t want that many establishments serving alcohol downtown, they won’t patronize them. Restaurants that fail to attract patrons go out of business. The only reason to oppose an open distribution of liquor licenses downtown is a misplaced “government knows best” reflex.

CHARLES J. MAIERS Indianapolis

Legacy money being slowly frittered away

Are we so anxious to spend the Legacy money that seems to be burning a hole in our pockets that in addition to the sports consultants, etc., we now are spending another $75,000 to $100,000 on oversized billboards to replace existing signs of very good taste with directions to our attractions?


Right-to-work law has unintended consequences

The right-to-work law in this state is simply illegal. The law states that it is an individual choice to belong to a labor union. If that be the case, it is no longer necessary to have a majority vote to have union representation in the workplace. Even if one person wants union representation, they are legally entitled to it.

Gov. Mitch Daniels claimed no one should be forced to join a union or be forced to pay union dues against their will. Daniels claimed he believed in personal freedom. If that be the case, then give the people the personal choice to pay state income and property taxes.

The right-to-work law states that labor unions are required to represent people who choose not to join or pay union dues. If this is legal, it would also have to apply to those people who are in a similar line of work. Lawyers represent people. If this is legal, than lawyers are no longer to be compensated for their representation. It is now the clients’ choice whether to pay.

There is also a serious issue about a possible ethics violation by Daniels. He claimed he had been in private discussions with businesspeople who claimed they would come here once Indiana became a right-to-work state. This turned out to be a questionable claim.

If we truly have a check-and-balance system in this state, then Daniels needs to be held accountable for the questionable claims he made while pushing through the right-to-work law.

CURTIS J. RANSOM Spencerville