Governor Closes Indoor Bar Service In Lower Michigan
By: Mike Stiles - Thursday, July 2, 2020

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (photo courtesy of State of Michigan)

(LANSING) – Governor Gretchen Whitmer has closed indoor service at bars throughout most of lower Michigan due to the spread of COVID-19.

On Wednesday, Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-143 which stops the indoor service at bars in the lower part of the state. Regions 6 and 8, which include the Upper Peninsula and much of the northern part of the Lower Peninsula are excluded from the order. Also, all bars statewide can continue to serve outdoors.

Whitmer also signed a package of bills allowing cocktails to go at bars and restaurants to help these businesses serve more Michiganders during this time.

Over the past week, every region in Michigan has seen an uptick in new cases, and daily case counts now exceed 20 cases per million in the Grand Rapids, Lansing and Kalamazoo regions. Nearly 25 percent of diagnoses in June were of people ages 20 to 29. That's up from roughly 16 percent in May. That shift aligns with national trends, and the evidence suggests that young people may be driving a new phase of the pandemic.

As bars have reopened for indoor service across the country, some have been linked to a growing number of large outbreaks.

The Executive Order applies to establishments with on-premises retailer liquor licenses that earn more than 70 percent of their gross receipts from alcohol sales. That means most brewpubs, distilleries, and vineyards can stay open indoors. Traditional bars, nightclubs and strip clubs will have to end indoor service.


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