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Regional Updates

June 9, 2020

In Virginia, Governor Northam announced today that Northern Virginia will enter Phase Two on Friday. The two notable changes in Phase 2 are:

  • INDOOR DINING IS ALLOWED at 50% capacity while still maintaining a minimum of six feet of physical distancing between all individuals, and no bar seating or congregating. 
  • All dining parties, whether seated together or across multiple tables, must be limited to 50 patrons or less. 
  • Social Gatherings: Limit the occupancy of spaces to ensure that six feet of physical distance can be maintained between all organizers, staff, volunteers, and attendees who are not members of the same household.

Click here for the full Phase 2 Reopen Guidelines document. 

In DC, the Council held a Legislative Session today, and what was passed today was in line with what we shared yesterday. The bill cleans up provisions passed in previous legislation such as rent freezes during the Emergency and a 15% cap on third party delivery fees during the Emergency, but makes no new substantive changes impacting your operations. The legislation also confirmed that the Tenant Payment Plan applies to restaurants and bars, and clarifies that it is inclusive of gross rent and any other amounts coming due under the lease during the health emergency and for a year thereafter.  The tenant should work the payment plan out with the landlord.  Although not ideal, this legislation was designed to give the tenant some flexibility in when and how to pay their rent during the public health emergency.

The bill also adopted rules already in place regarding expanded outdoor seating. The legislation keeps these privileges in place until October 25, 2020. As a reminder, if you are using expanded outdoor space, you must complete Phase One Registration using this link for both public and private space. ABRA also put together numerous requirements governing the use of the additional space as well as operational requirements designed to protect workers and the public. Click here for ABRA’s requirements. 

In Maryland, County Executives for Montgomery County and Prince George’s County have not indicated when they will enter Stage Two, which the rest of the state has already entered. The beginning of Stage Two does not alter requirements for restaurant operations. We will keep you posted as more information becomes available. 

Be safe. Be kind.