Three Schuylkill County restaurants were recently ordered to close by the Pennsylvania Dept. of Agriculture for violating shutdown orders issued to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
Numerous restaurants in Schuylkill County remained open despite the shutdown orders from Gov. Tom Wolf and Health Secretary Rachel Levine. Those orders went into effect on Dec. 12 and were lifted on Jan. 4.
The Wolf administration presented flimsy, non-local evidence that restaurants were essentially a breeding ground for the spread of COVID-19. It just so happens that COVID-19, according to Wolf, spreads rapidly at businesses that fall under more state regulations than most others.
These are the 3 Schuylkill County restaurants that were ordered to close before the shutdown orders were lifted, according to a report from PennLive.com:
- JT’s Grill & Cue, Auburn
- Leiby’s Ice Cream House & Restaurant, Tamaqua
- West Penn Diner, West Penn Township
The restaurants ordered to close were allowed to reopen on Jan. 4 when the shutdown orders were lifted. And many restaurants that were ordered to close for COVID violations never did, presumably willing to fight the orders in court at some point in the future.
It’s unclear if these 3 Schuylkill County restaurants that got a closure order stopped serving indoor diners.
During the period of Dec. 28-Jan. 3, Dept. of Agriculture inspectors conducted 3 COVID-related inspections on Schuylkill County restaurants, according to information released earlier this week. And the Agriculture Dept. issued these 3 closure orders.
From Dec. 21-27, the Dept. of Agriculture conducted 2 COVID-related inspections at Schuylkill County restaurants but took no actions. And between Dec. 14-20, the Dept. of Agriculture issued 7 COVID warnings to restaurants based on the inspections it conducted.
In November, the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Enforcement agency issued COVID-related violations to a pair of Schuylkill County bars.
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