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Lawmakers leave off Boston late night bar hours provision

A provision that sought to expand late night hours for Boston bars was passed over by state lawmakers.

boston greatest bar late night bar Patrons gather outside of The Greatest Bar near North Station.
Credit: Nicolaus Czarnecki, Metro file photo

Boston now has late night MBTA service and late night food trucks, but the city will apparently have to wait a little longer before the Hub's bars can stay open later.

State lawmakers negotiating a compromised budget that was approved on Monday left out a provision that sought to allow Boston bars and clubs to stay open as late as 4 a.m.

Mayor Marty Walsh said that an amendment for the late night hours was filed onto the budget, avoiding the committee process.

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State Rep. Michael Moran of Brighton said his constituents wouldn't have supported that late of a closing time and said there needed to be more discussion on the issue.

"You have to make a case for it and the case was never really made in the public square and the public forum," Moran said. "I think there needs to be a much broader discussion on this."

But it's not the end of the issue for Walsh, who earlier this year named two dozen people to a "late night task force" to examine ways to foster and grow the city's night life.

"I'm not disappointed with it. I certainly would have loved to have seen it," said Walsh. "There's a lot of things in the budget that we were able to get for the city of Boston and then a few things we weren't able to get. I know it's the process. There's other avenues we can move."

In March, Walsh had said he was hoping to implement this summer a pilot program that would allow for certain bars in the Seaport District to stay open past the 2 a.m. closing time. It was not clear Monday if the city was still moving forward with that pilot program.

Follow Michael Naughton on Twitter @metrobosmike.

 
 
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