Northam provides license fee deferrals, approval for restaurants and distilleries to sell mixed drinks

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RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) — Governor Northam announced on Wednesday that additional actions will be implemented per an executive directive which provides relief for Virginia ABC licensed restaurants and distilleries impacted by the coronavirus.

The directive goes in effect on Thursday, April 9 at midnight and states that the Virginia ABC collection of annual license renewal and permit fees will be deferred for 90-days from the original expiration date. The directive also states that those holding mixed beverage licenses may now sell mixed drinks via takeout and delivery.

Under the directive, the 90-day deferment period will include licenses expiring in March, April, May, and June. Penalty fees for late-payments will also be waived. Businesses that lose their license have to go through the application process again to reapply which takes a minimum of 30 days.

According to the statement released, “This deferral will allow more than 6,000 licensed retail, wholesale and manufacturing businesses to reopen and conduct business more quickly once the crisis is passed. An estimated $4.5 million in payments will be deferred.”

This directive also comes in an effort to help businesses that rely significantly on alcohol and mixed drink sales allowing them to expand product availability while continuing to remain open.

“This unprecedented health crisis has had a tremendous impact on businesses across the Commonwealth, and restaurants have been hit especially hard,” said Governor Northam. “Allowing restaurants and distilleries that remain open to sell mixed beverages with takeout or delivery orders will help them augment their revenue streams, so they can continue serving their customers and employing Virginians. These actions will give establishments with mixed beverage licenses greater flexibility to operate while their dining rooms are closed.”

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