RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - While restaurants and distilleries remain closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Gov. Ralph Northam has directed Virginia ABC to allow the businesses to sell mixed drinks through takeout or delivery, starting at midnight Thursday.
Under the governor’s executive order, Virginia ABC will also defer the collection of license renewal fees for 90 days from original expiration date for businesses with licenses expiring in March, April, May and June.
“This unprecedented health crisis has had a tremendous impact on businesses across the Commonwealth, and restaurants have been hit especially hard,” said Northam. “Allowing restaurants and distilleries that remain open to sell mixed beverages with takeout or delivery orders will help them augment their revenue streams, so they can continue serving their customers and employing Virginians. These actions will give establishments with mixed beverage licenses greater flexibility to operate while their dining rooms are closed.”
Many restaurants rely on alcohol sales to meet profit margins, and this temporary privilege from Northam will allow for more revenue to come in.
“These deferrals will allow businesses to continue to operate without concern over choosing between keeping an employee or renewing a license,” said Virginia ABC Chief Executive Officer Travis Hill. “Without this relief, some closed businesses would be in the position of paying a fee for a license they can’t exercise or risk losing their license. Virginia ABC is committed to supporting retailers, restaurants and their employees during this pandemic.”
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