A ballot initiative has been proposed in California that could potentially lower the drinking age. In California, a proposed law is written as a “ballot initiative” and is submitted to the Attorney General. The Attorney General’s office will give the proposed law a title and summary and the state will prepare a report on the potential financial impact of the proposal. Once the Attorney General’s office has approved the proposal in this way, the proposed bill has 150 days to gather the required number of signatures. The required number of signatures is either five percent (for a statute) or eight percent (for an amendment) of the number of people who voted in the most recent gubernatorial election. In the case of this proposed legislation, the number is 365,880 signatures. Generally bills will gather significantly more than the required number of signatures in order to account for fraudulent signatures. Should the initiative collect enough signatures it will be placed on the ballot and if the majority vote in favor, it will be passed into law.
Is The Current Drinking Age Law Outdated?
This particular initiative will be voted on in November 2016 should it collect the required signatures. The main proponent of this initiative, Terrance Lynn, believes the current law is outdated. The current law setting the drinking age at 21 was established at the federal level in 1984. Lynn believes 18 year olds have all of burdens and responsibilities of adulthood and should also share in the privilege of consuming alcohol. Terrance has also stated that he will not be spending money to advertise for signatures. Terrance is against money in politics and believes spending to promote his proposal would compromise his values. Experienced politicians and businessmen have claimed that without using money to hire people to gather signatures, it is likely the proposal will not make it to ballot.
Opposition To The Proposal
The biggest opposition to this proposal, predictably, comes from Mothers Against Drunk Driving. MADD believes raising the drinking age to 21 has saved 25,000 lives. MADD also claims that crashes have decreased by 16 percent because of the raised drinking age limit. Because federal law sets the minimum wage at 21, the state of California could potentially lose $200 million in federal highway funds, on the other hand, there is the potential for increased tax revenue from increased liquor sales.
Contact An Attorney In California
Currently, California allows those under the age of 21 to possess alcohol if their parent or of-age spouse is present. California is also one of the most lenient jurisdictions in the country when it comes to underage drinking. Most states impose strict liability for serving alcohol to a minor, in some states a person can be charged with serving a minor even if the minor steals the alcohol.
Keep in mind, here in South Carolina, as well as the rest of the United States, the drinking age is still 21. Underage drinking is an offense that could have long-term effects on your ability to find housing or employment. If you have been charged with underage drinking or providing alcohol to a minor, you need professional legal representation. Contact the attorneys at the De Bruin Law Firm today for a consultation and we will defend your rights and fight for the best possible outcome to your case.
What will a criminal defense attorney do for my case?
Once I have evaluated your case I will provide you an overview of your case. This will describe among other things the criminal law process, how we will work together to navigate the criminal justice system, and what expectation I have for you as a client and what expectations you should have for me as your defense attorney.
What should my attorney do to prepare my case for trial?
I collect not only the evidence that the government is required to supply, but also gather my own evidence for your defense as well. I will talk to witnesses, look for other video from third party sources, and go to the scene of the alleged offense. I believe your case is far to important not to go the extra mile to insure we know all the facts for your case, to provide you the best possible defense.
What do I need to do to help my attorney defend me?
No one cares more about your case than you. While we prepare your case, we also prepare your for trial. The one thing we need most from you is total honesty. Remember, everything you and I talk about is confidential. I am on your side.
For Drug offense cases, we may require you to look into a rehabilitation facility. I have had client’s charged with drug crimes who unfortunately we suffering from serious addiction and needed help, not jail. When I was able to convince those clients to make the difficult decision and enter a rehabilitation facility it helped create a positive situation that made negotiating their case more favorable. Many criminal cases last over a year. If I can help get a client suffering from an addition on the path to recovery while defending them from their criminal drug charges, their future becomes much more optimistic, and often, so does their case. Changing your life prior to trial or before a plea will greatly decrease your changes of going to jail. We are here to help not only with your legal needs, but also to help you in life. We have seen success stories and want you to be one too.
How much does a criminal defense attorney cost?
Your attorney’s fees will be based on multiple things including but not limited to, the severity of the crime, the evidence against you, prior convictions, and the amount of jail time your are facing if convicted. For criminal defense services I charge my client’s a flat fee on almost all cases at the start of their case. Therefore, you know how much your case will cost on day one.
I also am aware that many people are unable to afford to pay thousands of dollars upfront. In order to better serve my clients I offer a payment plan option. If you’d like to see if you qualify for our criminal defense payment plan option please contact us by using our form, or call us directly at (864) 372-2896.
Who will handle my case?
How do you know the attorney you hire is the attorney who will represent you during the entire process? I personally guarantee that I will handle every part of your criminal case, you will not be passed of t a junior attorney.
Aaron De Bruin | Criminal Defense Attorney
For over 10 years, Aaron De Bruin has been dedicated to representing clients within the criminal justice system. Aaron is committed to relentlessly providing his clients the legal counsel they deserve during the difficult times associated with a criminal charge. He prides himself on the ability to defend his clients and constantly seek the most favorable outcome for their individual situation.
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