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Texas Restaurant Association Asks Gov. Abbott to Let Bars Reopen if They Serve Food

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Under the Texas Restaurant Association's proposed changes, The Friendly Spot would be allowed to reopen with the same precautions as restaurants. - INSTAGRAM / SKYLINEDRONETX
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  • Under the Texas Restaurant Association's proposed changes, The Friendly Spot would be allowed to reopen with the same precautions as restaurants.
The Texas Restaurant Association has asked Gov. Greg Abbott to revise the definitions of "bar" in his recent order closing drinking establishments in response to a spike in COVID-19 cases.

In a letter to the governor, the TRA argues that if businesses now classified as bars but equipped with permanent kitchen facilities are allowed to reopen as restaurants, 1,500 Texas businesses could resume operation and put up to 35,000 people back to work.

Under current state rules, any establishment that makes 51% of its revenue from alcohol sales is classified as a bar, even if it serves food. The TRA's proposed change to that definition could clear the reopening of San Antonio businesses such as Southtown fixture The Friendly Spot and brewpub Weathered Souls.

“The definition of ‘bars’ in Gov. Abbott's executive order has inadvertently captured a lot of restaurants, requiring them to close their dining rooms, even though they were following all of the statewide health protocols for restaurants,” the TRA said in a statement accompanying the letter.

“All restaurants should be allowed to serve the public under the same health and safety standards.”

So many restaurants, so little time. Find out the latest San Antonio dining news with our Flavor Friday Newsletter.

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