June 1, 2021

West Coast Webinar Series Continues: Alcohol Beverage and Outdoor Dining Post-COVID

Holland & Knight West Coast Real Estate and Land Use Blog
Andrew J. Starrels
Breaking Ground: West Coast Real Estate and Land Use Blog

On May 26, 2021, a multi-disciplinary panel of Holland & Knight attorneys discussed relaxed alcohol beverage regulations and expansion of outdoor dining activity as the COVID-19 pandemic eases in California and Alaska.

Jessica "Jessie" Brown, a member of the firm's West Coast Litigation Group and Alcohol Beverage Team, reviewed the current state of regulation of alcohol beverage licensing in Alaska, a jurisdiction she described as notable for its expansive geographic scale and relative lack of regulatory infrastructure. Ms. Brown described how emergency orders permitting expanded outdoor alcohol beverage service, take-out and delivery have ensured economic survival for some businesses. She also shared some of the strategies that have been successfully deployed to persuade officials to expand licensed activities. The presentation highlighted some of the creative methods food and beverage operators have used to provide for outdoor dining during the COVID crisis in spite of Alaska's severe weather.

Michael Newman, a member of the West Coast Land Use and Environmental Group and head of the firm's Alcohol Beverage Team, described the state of relaxed regulatory enforcement of alcohol beverage restrictions in California during COVID, including such programs as home delivery, expanded sales activity for on-site and off-site licensees and efforts to provide solutions for operators crippled by pandemic restrictions and closures. Mr. Newman also outlined current statutory proposals in Sacramento aimed at making permanent some or all of the relaxed procedures implemented during the crisis.

Andrew Starrels and Paloma Perez-McEvoy, members of the West Coast Land Use and Environmental Group with practices focused on land use and development in Southern California, discussed the expansion of outdoor dining permissibility for food and beverage operators, as well as regulatory impacts at the state and local levels. Observing the contrast between emergency orders issued a year ago with the more typical web of overlapping jurisdictional requirements and governmental departments, Mr. Starrels described some of the "pressure points" and unresolved questions behind making permanent very popular programs for outdoor dining. To illustrate this, Ms. Perez-McEvoy examined the intricacies of the Los Angeles' alfresco dining program as an example of the regulatory pathways for outdoor dining and the obstacles that permittees face.

If you were unable to attend the webinar, please feel free to view and share the online recording.

Online Recording

Access Passcode: #OutdoorDining_0526

Upcoming Programs in the Series

Continuing Legal Education (CLE)

Holland & Knight is an approved CLE provider in several jurisdictions, including California, Georgia, Illinois, New York, Pennsylvania and Texas. All reasonable efforts to seek CLE credits for this program will be made. In certain instances, some programs may not be awarded CLE credits because of either content or jurisdictional restrictions. For New York attorneys, this program's format qualifies for CLE for transitional (newly admitted) and experienced attorneys.

DISCLAIMER: Please note that the situation surrounding COVID-19 is evolving and that the subject matter discussed may change on a daily basis. Please contact your responsible Holland & Knight lawyer for timely advice.

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