Businesses in Miami Beach are celebrating after residents rejected a proposal to ban alcohol sales on some Ocean Drive establishments after 2 a.m.
The proposal would have prevented alcohol sales on a 10-block stretch of Ocean Drive at 2 a.m. instead of the current 5 a.m. cutoff.
"What was on the table wasn’t going to work. We knew it, our employees knew it and the community knew it, " Mike Palma of the world-famous Clevelander said.
"NO" beat "YES" in a 65 percent to 35 percent vote.
Miami Beach Ricky Arriola was in favor of stopping alcohol sales to lower the crime rate.
"We keep getting embarrassing headlines and horrible crimes are being committed and we are doing our best to get our arms around this," Arriola said.
Arriola previously said the businesses in question and "the kinds of people they attract [contribute] to the overall crimes on Ocean Drive."
Outgoing Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine issued a statement after the rejection.
“Tonight, the residents have spoken, and while the measure didn’t pass, they were given an opportunity to be active in the decision-making process," Levine wrote. My commitment from day one was focused on giving residents a voice and through this referendum, we did just that.”
Although Arriola said that anything is possible in regards to the alcohol issue being revisited, those who depend on Ocean Drive's vibrant nightlife can breathe a sigh of relief.
"This shows that the voting residents in this city value tourism, value ocean drive and saw that this was a very poor referendum and that's why it failed so miserably," Josh Wallack of Mangos said. "Thank God Miami Beach and the voters of Miami Beach saw through the smoke-screen of what was really going on here because improving Ocean Drive is what we’re about."