Iowa Stepping Up Social Distancing Enforcement at Bars, Restaurants

DES MOINES, Iowa - The State of Iowa is stepping up enforcement of Governor Kim Reynolds proclamation for social distancing at bars and restaurants.

The proclamation requires the businesses to separate each group or person who are dining or drinking by at least six feet, and all patrons must have a seat at a table or bar.

Starting this week, the state will issue a $1,000 fine for a first time violation, followed a liquor license suspension the second time. Businesses with only a food license will receive a warning.

Bars and restaurants will lose their liquor licenses for a third offense.

Enforcement of Reynolds proclamation comes after bars were allowed to reopen in late May.

The Alcoholic Beverages Division (ABD) and Department of Inspections and Appeals (DIA) will work together to ensure that businesses follow the guidelines.

“COVID-19 is still with us and we need bars and restaurants to help mitigate the spread of the virus,” said Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division Administrator Stephen Larson. “For those businesses that choose not to, they need to understand that there are consequences.”

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