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Operating a restaurant involves a lot of moving parts – most controlled by you, but many controlled by laws, regulations, licenses and permits. Alcoholic beverages, food safety, labor practices and the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (the healthcare mandate) are significant – and then there is everything else.

Get to know the regulatory agencies that govern such things as sidewalk cafes, signage, noise, fire safety and more. And, get to know about the efforts being made by RAMW on your behalf to improve the regulatory environment.


March 20, 2020
As you are aware, S ales & Use Tax payments are due on March 20th. U nder § 58.1-617 the Tax Commissioner may for good cause grant a business an extension for up to thirty days. For this period, no interest or penalty would be charged, assessed or collected by reason of the granting of any such extension. In the event the Commissioner grants an extension beyond thirty days, there may be interest on the tax. If you are interested in taking this route, you are able to request an extension by using the Virginia Online Services site here ...

All On-Premises Alcohol Sales & Consumption Suspended Effective Today at 4pm

March 19, 2020
The DC Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Board adopted an emergency rulemaking prohibiting the sale of alcoholic beverages for on-premises consumption starting Thursday, March 19th at 4pm. You cannot serve alcoholic beverages to people while they wait for their food order. This is in effect through the duration of either or both the Mayor’s Public Emergency and Public Health Emergency . Please note for delivery and takeout of alcoholic beverages: they must be provided in sealed container and a beer with a lime in the top does not count as a seal. Establishments should not be giving out...

All Pub Crawl Permits for March Events Revoked

March 13, 2020
All pub crawl permits for events scheduled to take place in Washington, DC now through March 31, 2020 have been revoked effective immediately. The 6-0 decision by the Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Board was made based on guidance from the District’s Department of Health (DOH) that all non-essential mass gatherings of more than 1,000 persons be cancelled to prevent the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). Mayor’s Orders 2020-045 and 2020-046 indicate that the spread of COVID-19 represents an imminent threat to the health, safety, and welfare of District residents that requires...

Montgomery County Alcoholic Beverage Services Update

March 18, 2020
Attention Montgomery County Restaurants, All restaurants licensed by the Montgomery County Board of License Commissioners may sell sealed containers of beer and wine for off-premises consumption along with a takeout or delivered meal. This permission includes the sale of bottles, cans, growlers, and crowlers for off-premises consumption and does not include the sale of alcoholic drinks in a to-go cup. This permission does not include liquor. This permission expires when the emergency order to close restaurants is lifted. Businesses may deliver beer and wine to Montgomery County addresses...

A Helpful Check List for Closing Your Restaurant

March 18, 2020
A helpful guide for suspending/closing your restaurant under challenging and difficult circumstances Let staff take any food that cannot be frozen/saved. Remove all trash from the building/Cancel Dumpster Pickups. Take pourers off and tightly wrap open bottle tops of liquor in saran. Leave all exhaust fans running - In the unlikely event of a gas leak or pilot goes out during the closing, the fans will help to exhaust any hazardous gas from the building. Turn off any autopayment processes. Cancel any scheduled deliveries. Examples would include: Broadline Distributer Knife sharpening EcoLab...

DC MD & VA | Apply for Small Business Administration Loans Today

March 20, 2020
Updated – The US Small Business Administration (SBA) is offering designated states and territories low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Upon a request received from a state’s or territory’s Governor, SBA will issue under its own authority, as provided by the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act that was recently signed by the President, an Economic Injury Disaster Loan declaration. Any such Economic Injury Disaster Loan...

Recap & Update From Industry-Wide Briefing Call with Regional Leaders

March 18, 2020
Dear Operators, We hosted an industry-wide call this morning with regional leaders and we understand there were some technical difficulties. We had hundreds of people on the call, but as other businesses and organizations are needing to do everything by conference call, the platform was overloaded. We apologize for any inconvenience. We are synthesizing the information from the call to share on our website including FAQs and resources shared on that call. This will be available later today on our blog where we are posting all real-time updates and resources. Please share with anyone in the...

Best Practices to Help Ensure Your Business Continuity

March 15, 2020
Original content c/o: National Restaurant Association What should your business do to prepare for a pandemic? Here are 10 steps to take now! Step 1: Maintain a healthy work environment. Ensure adequate air circulation and post tips on how to stop the spread of germs. Promote hand and respiratory hygiene. Ensure wide availability of alcohol-based hand sanitizers (not just in places required by law). Provide sanitizing supplies for frequent cleaning of surfaces and equipment. Remind employees to report any illness to their manager especially if they are sick with fever, coughing and/or...

Mayor Bowser Announces DC Businesses Can Now Apply for SBA Disaster Assistance Loans

March 17, 2020
DC Businesses Impacted by Coronavirus (COVID-19) Can Now Apply for Federal Relief Funds (WASHINGTON, DC) – Tuesday, March 17, Mayor Muriel Bowser announced that the US Small Business Administration (SBA) has accepted the District of Columbia’s declaration for assistance in the form of economic injury disaster loans following the advent of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), and DC businesses can start applying now. While the SBA directly administers this loan program, the Department of Small and Local Business Development (DSLBD), led by Director Kristi Whitfield, will liaise with...

Updates & Clarifications on Relief & Requirements

March 18, 2020
Dear Restaurant Community, As we try to give you up to date information, we ask that you also be patient as we are doing our best to respond to each and every email and also provide you with information that has been subject to change. We received an influx of questions and want to provide some clarification shared in our earlier email. UPDATED INFO Virginia: Governor Northam Mandates 10 or fewer patrons Governor Ralph Northam issued a new statement that changes his recommendation to a mandate, which limits the number of patrons to 10 or less. Restaurants are encouraged to continue to go and...