SALEM, Ore. (KOIN) -- Carroll Unruh has been in the alcohol business for 45 years. He owns Oregon Beverage Services in Salem, a city where alcohol over 14% isn't sold or allowed at events, parks or any other city-owned facilities or land.
Beer and wine are available at these places, but liquor eclipsing the city's percentage limit isn't. Unruh thinks that should change.
He and the company's General Manager, John Unruh, wrote a letter to the city, hoping officials would take a second look and review the current policy. Their argument: based on OLCC standards, a drink is a drink, regardless of its alcohol percentage.
"Being long time Salem residents, we've seen the change in economic and social climate and we want Salem events to have the same opportunities as other even locations across the state," Carroll said. "It's really just allowing them to drop the 14 percent and it still allows us to have good control that is authorized."
Salem's Colleen Mpyisi doesn't think the idea is a bad one.
"I think it should be allowed for those who want it," she said, "and if it isn't an option then they don't have a choice."
Options are good, but inserting liquor into the equation does have inherent concern.
"As long as they are providing good security and that things are kept abreast from what the potentials might be, then I think it's a good thing," Mpyisi said.
"It really comes down to how we control it: that we don't serve minors or over-serve people," he said. "Those are our 2 primary objectives, whether it is here or any other jurisdiction, it's all the same."