21 and over to stay in Iowa City - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

21 and over to stay in Iowa City


IOWA CITY (KWWL) -- Iowa City has been labeled as one of the top 10 party towns in the country, and it looks like a new ordinance added early this year to curb underage drinking by only allowing those 21 and up to be in bars after 10 p.m. will stay on the books.

On Tuesday, 13,725 voted to repeal the ordinance while 15,122 voted to keep the ordinance in place.

The University of Iowa issued the following statement in the wake of Tuesday's vote:

Tom Rocklin, Vice President for Student Services, said in a written statement, "The support voiced by Iowa City voters today for working toward a safer community is an important step. But the issue is about changing the culture of drinking, and there still is much work to do. We remain committed to continuing our efforts with students, faculty, staff, and community leaders to encourage the safe, legal, and responsible use of alcohol in our community."

Opponents of the ordinance say underage drinking hasn't stopped, it's just become less noticeable. More than 2,500 signatures opposing the measure were submitted to put the ordinance to a public vote.

Police say there's been a big change in the number of arrests for possession of alcohol under the legal age. In 2009, there were 83 arrests. In 2010, there have been just 50. In 2009, 44 of those arrests were at businesses. This year, just one arrest has happened at a business.

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