Restaurants, bars applaud Gov. Wolf’s plan to ease restrictions

Written by on March 16, 2021

 Restaurants, bars applaud Gov. Wolf’s plan to ease restrictions

By Sam Dunklau

March 16, 2021

Keith Srakocic / AP Photo

Restaurant and bar owners are applauding the Wolf administration’s decision to lift certain pandemic-related restrictions that have been in place for months.

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On April 4, restaurants will be able to restart alcohol service and bars won’t have to make customers buy food with their drink orders.

Plus, both can host 75% of the customers they usually would indoors, as long as they strictly follow public health rules.

Chuck Moran of the Pennsylvania Licensed Beverage and Tavern Association says that’s welcome relief for food service workers.

“I know that there’s a lot of staff, particularly waiters, waitresses and bartenders who rely on tips who really want to get back to normal.” 

It’s a sign the Commonwealth is moving in the right direction, he adds.

“You know the virus is still out there. We can’t ignore it. But you know we can take safe steps to reopen the Pennsylvania economy because we know that the vaccine is rolling out, and each and every day that goes by, more and more Pennsylvanians have shots in their arms,” Moran says. 

Hospitality businesses can now apply for special grants of up to $50,000. The Commonwealth has set aside $145 million for that purpose.

Lawmakers are also eyeing a proposal to increase the liquor purchase discount from 10% to 15% for bars and restaurants that buy in bulk.

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