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The Liquor Control Act in Albuquerque is now being enforced by police as well as the state.
Earlier this week, two Albuquerque police department officers were commissioned and certified to enforce the act.
City leaders say the state is swamped trying to enforce all the liquor establishments statewide.
They said the officers can now give citations under the liquor control act and use those citations to enforce the city's nuisance abatement ordinance.
If any business sells alcohol to the underage or the intoxicated, two APD officers now have the authority to cite them.
"This is a dramatic change in the previous law," said Pete Dinelli of the Safe City Strike Force.
Dinelli said the added power allows the city to really crack down.
"We'll be able to send in our police officers to basically cite the liquor establishments, but on top of that we'll be able to use that as able to go through with criminal nuisance abatement action," he said.
In the past six years, he said the city had shut down six bars through nuisance abatement including the Blue Spruce Lounge and Rusty's Cork 'N' Bottle.
But now the violations are one in the same giving officers twice the reason to check businesses out.
"They are the ones who would go into these bars and cite them," he said.
People downtown Saturday night thought the change was a good idea.
Colleen Gallegos, an Albuquerque resident, said, "I guess if it just gets done, as long as it gets done, it doesn't matter who does it."
Andrew Henson, another Albuquerque resident, said, "I guess it's a pretty good idea. Underage drinking is becoming more of a problem, so I don't see it as anything bad."
The two deputized officers can also issue citations for New Mexico's three strikes law -- three strikes in one year and a business faces fines or the loss of a liquor license.
Dinelli also said the two deputized officers will be able to go undercover to make sure businesses are obeying the Liquor Control Act.
City leaders say they've been working with the state Department of Public Safety for three years in order to accomplish this.

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