the Chronicles

  • Required Poster for Essential Businesses

    For all essential businesses that are remaining open during the extended Shelter-In-Place in the following counties: Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, SF, San Mateo & Santa Clara, the new order requires you fill out a form regarding your safety measures for employees and customers and post it somewhere visible to the public by midnight on Thursday, APRIL 2. You can download a PDF of that: HERE.

    If you aren’t able to fill it out, I will help. Call or email for assistance.

    What are “Essential Businesses”?

    From what we understand from this SF County Health Order publication from March 31, restaurants and bars can continue to operate on take-out and delivery basis only (with the above notice posted). Restaurants and grocery stores that do substantial food sales are allowed and encouraged to stay open, if possible. 

    What about bars? 

    Gatherings are prohibited, but it doesn’t state that bars must close completely. That being said, this is uncharted territory liability-wise and bars are NOT expressly defined as “essential” without substantial food, so if you’re concerned, you should consult your attorney or just play it safe. 

    That is all. We love you.
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  • March 27, 2020 Clarifications Published

    Last one for now, ABC has published some clarification on what each license type can and cannot do HERE. Just scroll down to find your license type. 

    And a reminder for restaurants (or bars who are acting like restaurants) to put this poster up where people are ordering. CLICK HERE FOR POSTER.

    A note of gratitude

    We want to acknowledge you for your creativity in finding ways to serve your clientele, protect your staff, and keep your businesses afloat. For what you all are going through, everyone who has reached out to us has been extremely gracious.

    (I knew we worked with y’all for a reason.)

    Please don’t hesitate to call or email if you have any questions about your ABC license privileges or to bounce some new, innovative ideas off of us. 

    We are here for you.

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  • ABC Covid-19 RELIEF

    Ordered 3/19/2020 by California’s Department of ABC for all ABC licensees.

    Here’s what you can do during this Covid-19 crisis. Just going to be brief here. Call if you have questions and take a look at the legalese here

    1. Returns of alcoholic beverages – wholesalers can (but are not required to) accept returns from retailers.

    2. Retail-to-retail transactions – off-sale licensees (20s and 21s) can purchase product from on-sale retailers (41, 42, 47, 48)

    3. Extension of credit – credit term rules are relaxed. It’s up to the parties involved what terms are appropriate.

    4. On-sale retailers exercising off-sale privileges – THIS. 47 and 48 licensees CAN sell beer, wine & DISTILLED SPIRITS “to go” in manufacturer packages, and 41and 42 licensees can sell beer and wine “to go” in manufacturer packages.

    5. Sales of alcoholic beverages to go – restaurant licensees (41 & 47) can sell beer, wine, spirits, and COCKTAILS “to go” in containers with secure lids (no openings for sipping or straws) with food sales. **NOTE: The below language must be posted prominently.

    6. Drive-thru windows for off-sale transactions – you can sell to patrons in vehicles.

    7. Deliveries to consumers – this is allowed when payments have been processed at the restaurant. IE. take cards in advance.

    8. Hours of operation for on-sale premises – all hourly restrictions are relaxed aside from the 2am – 6am state-wide restriction. 

    **Required Language for restaurants selling pre-mixed drinks:

    “Alcoholic beverages that are packaged by this establishment are open containers and may not be transported in a motor vehicle except in the vehicle’s trunk; or, if there is no trunk, the container may be kept in some other area of the vehicle that is not normally occupied by the driver or passengers (which does not include a utility compartment or glove compartment (Vehicle Code Section 23225)). Further, such beverages may not be consumed in public or in any other area where open containers are prohibited by law.” 

    We know more, much more, will be needed for us to emerge on the other side of this. These are temporary measures but they are nearly the full extent of what this agency can do right now and one of the miracles we’ve seen in this year of surprising, life-altering events. Truly want to thank the legislators for acting on this. And thanks NYC for setting a swift example.

    Additional info for restaurants during Covid-19
    Hope your heart rate is coming back to a manageable level and you’re
    finding your way through this moment. Regarding the sales of
    alcoholic beverages “to go” and the required poster that is visible to your customers, ABC made a printable version of it that I wanted to send you, below.  

    Because we have gotten a lot of questions about that rule in particular,
    here’s what you can do right now during this temporary, emergency

    Restaurants can sell the alcohol permitted under their license type (beer & wine for Type 41; beer, wine and distilled spirits for Type 47) “to go” in manufacturer-sealed containers (ie. bottles and cans of wine and beer). 

    • Type 41 and Type 47 licensees can also sell poured beverages (beer,
    wine and beer/wine-based mixed drinks for Type 41; beer, wine and all
    cocktails for Type 47)  in “secure” containers, ie. disposable cups with lids or growlers. Any holes in the lids should be taped over or covered in some way. 

    One other thing— while ABC is not enforcing any “no off sale” conditions, they do not have any control over rules from your city’s planning department. If Palo Alto or Walnut Creek specifies in your CUP that no off sales are allowed or you have to close by 11pm, local law enforcement might be enforcing that. You need to ask the city if they are enforcing those restrictions. These relief measures mean that California’s State Agency the Dept. of ABC enforcement officers are not out looking for violations of this right now, or collaborating with local jurisdictions on these rules. Let me know if you have specific questions about that.  And put this poster up where people are ordering.

    If you prefer a PDF, download it HERE.

    Additional Funding

    At the risk of telling you something you already know, I hope you are applying for the SBA disaster loan and filing claims for business interruption with your insurance agents. Some of these may be denied at first, but it’s likely that eligibility will increase, more funding will be available and it’s good to put yourself in line and be ready with receipts.  ✊
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