House approves restaurant capacity bill Wolf says he’ll veto

  • The Associated Press

(Harrisburg) — The Pennsylvania House on Wednesday approved a bill to loosen pandemic restrictions on bars and restaurants, a proposal the governor has said he will veto.

Lawmakers voted 145 to 56 in favor of the bill, which would end a requirement that customers buy food when they purchase alcohol and would allow people to be served drinks at bars.

All Republicans voted “yes,” while the Democratic caucus was roughly split.

The bill would also permit taverns and restaurants to operate at 50% capacity, or more if they can meet state and federal social distancing standards or erect appropriate barriers. And it would make it easier for restaurants to adapt adjacent outside areas to serve customers.

Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration this week raised allowable capacity from 25% to 50% for restaurants that can certify they meet state and federal standards for mask wearing, social distancing and hours of operation.

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