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Indoor Bar Service Shut Down

July 1, 2020

Today Governor Whitmer issued an Executive Order prohibiting bars and nightclubs in Regions 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 7 from offering indoor service, effective 11:00pm July 1, 2020.

The order reads: To protect our state from a new wave of infections and to increase the likelihood that we can reopen schools in the fall, this order closes bars and nightclubs for indoor service in those regions that are in Phase 4 of the Michigan Safe Start Plan. Restaurants can remain open for indoor service, but alcohol can be served only to patrons who are seated at socially distanced tables. Common areas where people stand and congregate within restaurants must be closed. Restaurants and bars may remain open for outdoor seating, but only for seated customers at socially distanced tables.

The order does allow for establishments to sell alcoholic beverages for off-premises consumption.

In part, the order outlines the following:

  1. Food service establishments, as defined in section 1107(t) of the Michigan Food Law, 2000 PA 92, as amended, MCL 289.1107(t), that hold on-premises retailer licenses to sell alcoholic beverages must close for indoor service if they earn more than 70% of their gross receipts from sales of alcoholic beverages.
  1. Any food service establishment that serves alcoholic beverages for on-premises consumption must, both indoors and outdoors:
    (a) Require patrons to wear a face covering except when seated at their table or bar top (unless the patron is unable medically to tolerate a face covering);
    (b) Require patrons to remain seated at their tables or bar tops, except to enter or exit the premises, to order food, or to use the restroom;
    (c) Sell alcoholic beverages only via table service, not via orders at the bar except to patrons seated at the bar;
    (d) Prohibit access to common areas in which people can congregate, dance, or otherwise mingle; and
    (e) Follow all of the applicable workplace safeguards established in Executive Order 2020-114 and any order that may follow from it, including the provisions limiting capacity to 50% of normal seating and requiring six feet of separation between parties or groups at different tables or bar tops.
  1. Food service establishments that are closed for indoor service under section 1 of this order but open for outdoor service must:
    (a) Prohibit patrons from entering the establishment, except to walk through in order to access the outdoor area, to leave the establishment, or to use the restroom; and
    (b) Require patrons to wear a face covering while inside, except for patrons who are unable medically to tolerate a face covering.

For a recap from LARA, click here.

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