Another day, another threat from a bureaucrat who wants to take away our precious, precious booze. No, Nanny Bloomberg isn't considering his mayoral bucket list again—now it looks like some folks in Governor Andrew Cuomo's administration are getting those old-timey temperance feelings. Y'know, for the kids!

See, inside the New York State Health Department's "Improvement Plan for 2013-2017," there is a whole section on promoting mental health and preventing substance abuse. And that section lays out some goals not everyone is going to love. Because in the name of reducing underage drinking the NYSDOH thinks it would be swell if we could:

Increase evidence‐based environmental strategies that prevent and reduce underage drinking, such as:
o Increase taxation on alcohol sales.
o Decrease alcohol outlet density.
o Increase motor vehicle sobriety checkpoints.
o Alcohol outlet compliance checks; alcohol outlet server/seller training.
o On‐premise alcohol outlet and community event regulations (e.g., restricting hours that alcohol can be served).


In other words? In addition to upping the chances of catching drunk drivers, the DOH would like to see booze be more expensive, harder to purchase and available for fewer hours.

And yet, we wouldn't start planning your speakeasy just yet, as these are just plans and not close to law. For any of the ideas laid out to be specifically implemented would require the governor, the Legislature and/or the city and local governments to agree on them. And that seems unlikely considering the growing importance of our booze industry to the State's bottom line. Honestly, legalized medical marijuana seems more likely to hit the Empire State before a modern day prohibition—there is no way that New York's Semi-First Lady is going to let her boyfriend take away her daily drinks.