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University of Iowa News Release

Dec. 7, 2006

Skorton Responds To Iowa City Alcohol Advisory Board Recommendations

University of Iowa President David Skorton today issued this response to the recent recommendations of the Iowa City Alcohol Advisory Board:

The Iowa City Alcohol Advisory Board has delivered an excellent set of recommendations for reducing the violence and vandalism caused by people who drink too much. I applaud the Advisory Board's efforts and pledge to aggressively pursue implementation of the recommendations pertaining to the University of Iowa. I have communicated that desire to the senior administrators who will be responsible for carrying out those recommendations, Executive Vice President and Provost Michael Hogan and Vice President for Student Services Phillip Jones, who also support the recommendations.

I hope that the City Council and the Police Department will agree to implement the recommendations that the Advisory Board has made to them.

In addition, I continue to support a city ordinance to prohibit persons under the age of 21 from being allowed in bars. Based on the voluminous research on this issue, I believe that this is a very important additional approach that we can take to bring this problem under control.

A task force of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, in its report "A Call to Action: Changing the Culture of Drinking at U.S. Colleges," recommends the following six strategies because they have been successful with populations similar to those found in college communities:

• A minimum legal drinking age of 21

• Enforcement of laws to reduce alcohol-impaired driving

• Zoning restrictions on alcohol retail outlet density

• Increased prices and taxes on alcoholic beverages

• Responsible beverage service policies

• Formation of campus-community coalitions to reduce alcohol abuse

It is encouraging that the Advisory Board has recommended two of the strategies on that list: increased taxes and responsible beverage service. As a community, we can all take credit for having previously implemented the strategies related to enforcing laws on drunken driving and the formation of a campus-community coalition.

The Alcohol Advisory Board's report is a timely catalyst that can re-energize our community discussion on how to reduce the harmful effects of excessive drinking. If we take the best recommendations from both our local Advisory Board and from the National Task Force, I'm confident that we can craft a comprehensive plan for achieving the goal of making our campus and community a safe place to live, work, learn and have fun.

David Skorton


University of Iowa

NOTE: The NIAAA Task Force Report's recommended strategies can be found at this web address:

STORY SOURCE: University Relations, 101 Jessup Hall, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1000.

CONTACT: David Skorton, 319-335-2132,