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As I See It

Those who host may not lose the most



Those who host lose the most. That is the message plastered on billboards throughout the La Crosse area, designed to remind parents they can get in trouble for hosting underage drinking parties at their home. But as a result of a court ruling in Wisconsin last week, those billboard may be coming down soon. A Fond du Lac parent successfully appealed the $1000 fine he was given for violating that county’s social host ordinance. The court ruled that, among other things, the county’s statue is more strict than the state law, and is therefore illegal. Many other communities, including La Crosse and Onalaska have similar ordiances on the books, but because of the court ruling are now likely unenforceable. That is a setback for those who have worked hard for years to curb underange drinking in our area, in part by fining parents who allow drinking in their home. It is now up to the state legislature to revisit that law, making sure that it is properly written and enforceable. And our lawmakers should get to work on that quickly, before the next round of graduation parties arrives.

Scott Robert Shaw serves as WIZM Program Director and News Director, and delivers the morning news on WKTY, Z-93 and 95.7 The Rock. Scott has been at Mid-West Family La Crosse since 1989, and authors Wisconsin's only daily radio editorial, "As I See It" heard on WIZM each weekday morning and afternoon.

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