Beer, beer, glorious locally-brewed beer: now available throughout the year, from New York to here, in quantities heretofore undreamt of.
All thanks to a newly-streamlined permitting process that will allow Petaluma's Lagunitas Brewing Company -- maker of fine handcrafted ales and lagers -- to nearly triple in size in a third of the time previously-necessary.
The brewery is spending $14 million to increase in production to 600,000 annual barrels of brew, up from 160,000, according to Petaluma360.com. Brewery founder and owner Tony Magee says that with the city on board, a "friendly" planning and review process allowed the expansion to go from planning stages to completion in a year, according to the news Web site.
To build even something as simple as a building, multiple city departments need to be wrangled, lassooed and otherwise brought to the proverbial table to approve, sign off and otherwise inject opinion into construction projects. Yet the Petaluma city planners sat down at a real-life table withh Magee and Lagunitas in order to get the project rolling PDQ, ASAP, and lickety-split.
At least that's the hope -- and the point of Petaluma's Economic Development Strategy, the Web site observed.