On-site Beverage Consumption Must be Accompanied by Food, ABCC Increases Staff for Compliance Checks

August 7, 2020
Massachusetts Restaurant Association

Today, Governor Baker announced a series of restrictions aimed at stopping the spread of COVID-19 in Massachusetts, especially in higher risk communities that have seen a recent uptick in cases. While Massachusetts has seen a decrease in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations since May, there has been a slight uptick in certain communities in recent days.
Statewide Executive Order:
Effective Tuesday, August 11, which will:
  • Reduce the limit on outdoor gatherings from 100 to 50 people (indoor gatherings limit will remain at 25 people)
  • Apply these limits to all types of gatherings, on both public and private property
  • Require face coverings where more than 10 people from different households will be mixing.
  • Step two of phase III of the Commonwealth’s reopening plan has been postponed indefinitely.
Restaurant Impact
Restaurant rules have been updated to state that alcoholic beverages may only be served for on-site consumption if accompanied by orders for food prepared on-site.
What is next?
Operators can expect more enforcement of all existing restaurant guidelines, including mask regulations. The ABCC has increased staff will be conducting frequent compliance checks, in addition to State and local police. These agencies have the ability to issue cease and desist orders if operators are not complying with regulations.
This is not a roll back of existing regulations, this is a pause, we must remain vigilant and follow all protocols and regulations or the next steps taken by the Government will be to roll back regulations.