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House of Representatives
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: September 16, 2020 11:07 AM
From: Representative David R. Millard
To: All House members
Subject: Allowing Restaurants to Operate During the Emergency Without Unreasonable Occupancy and Time Restrictions
I will be introducing legislation that would allow restaurants to operate during the current emergency despite Governor Wolf’s concerted efforts to force the hospitality industry into bankruptcy with unreasonable occupancy and time restrictions.
As you know, the governor has limited restaurants to 25 percent indoor capacity and with no patrons seated at the bar.  His latest ruling from on high is that they can operate at 50 percent capacity starting September 21, although they must complete and post a “self-certification,” something that’s not required of other retail industries, and they can’t serve alcohol after 10 p.m., a time apparently chosen because another state has that rule.
There seems to be no consistency to the governor’s rules governing the restaurant industry, other than he doesn’t think people should go out to eat.  I’m sure you’ve heard the complaints from the restaurants in your area—they are barely staying afloat, and 30 percent of them may never reopen.  Many of these are independent restaurants that are family-run through generations. 
Restaurants are already doing their part to stop Covid.  They have been following social distancing guidelines—and will continue to do so during the emergency—because it’s the right thing to do and because they want to protect the health of their employees and their patrons.  To target them with additional unreasonable restrictions specific only to their industry is unfair and bad policy.
Please join me in sponsoring this legislation.

Introduced as HB2884