North Alabama bartenders worry about impact of new alcohol sales restrictions

The new rule will be enforced Saturday. ABC Board members maintain the right to reverse their decision.

Posted: Jul 27, 2020 5:12 PM
Updated: Jul 27, 2020 8:18 PM

Monday, the Alabama Alcoholic Beverage Control Board unanimously voted to prohibit bars or any establishment with a liquor license to serve booze after 11 p.m.

The board members passed the measure after being asked by the Governor's Office to come up with something in response to the rising coronavirus numbers.

Board members said during the Monday meeting that the governor wanted the time to be 10 p.m., but they compromised on 11 p.m.

Starting immediately, bars and other places cannot serve alcohol after 11 p.m. and all alcoholic beverages must be off a table by 11:30 p.m.

While in effect now, the board said the rule will not be enforced until Aug. 1.

Bars and other places can still stay open for however long they want and serve food and non-alcoholic beverages.

The board's move surprised bartenders across North Alabama and left them wondering how the new rule is going to be enforced.

"It's putting a lot on us, ya know. We're already in a stressful scenario. We all are aware of what's going on in our community. We all know how serious (coronavirus) is but we all have to make a living for our families as well," said Huntsville-Madison bartender Allison Crutcher.

"Somebody may have already had a couple of drinks and then I have to be the one to come in and be the bearer of bad news per se And yeah I don't know what to expect, what if they aren't happy about it? Right now we're already getting a lot of anger towards us about wearing a mask."

On top of the worry about enforcing the new rule, bartenders have concerns about the loss of income. Most places in downtown Florence were starting to stay open later. Bartender Austin Mize said things were getting better.

"It's a very odd time to be a bartender right now. We went through months of not being able to work. We weren't earning any money then we get back and we have to be open at half capacity which is already taking money from us now we get this news ...," said Mize.

Mize said he has another job so he can stay afloat, but he normally makes most of his tips later in the night.

"11 to close is our time period where we make most of our money and having to shut down during our busiest hours is terrible for us," said Mize.

If a business violates the new rule they could have their liquor license suspended by the state.

If ABC inspectors make rounds at various bars they will be accompanied by ALEA officers.

Huntsville
Broken Clouds
86° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 91°
Florence
Scattered Clouds
86° wxIcon
Hi: 91° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 91°
Fayetteville
Overcast
77° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 78°
Decatur
Few Clouds
85° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 89°
Scottsboro
Scattered Clouds
84° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 94°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 102196

Reported Deaths: 1825
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson13682262
Mobile10836223
Montgomery7009153
Madison558135
Tuscaloosa437880
Unassigned411368
Baldwin379129
Shelby341437
Marshall321438
Lee273547
Morgan245720
Etowah221934
DeKalb187014
Calhoun186719
Elmore178939
Walker158466
Houston149313
Limestone140713
Russell13982
St. Clair138820
Dallas134925
Franklin131522
Cullman125212
Colbert124318
Lauderdale121920
Autauga119622
Talladega110314
Escambia109917
Jackson10914
Tallapoosa88379
Dale86329
Chambers85238
Blount8485
Chilton8439
Clarke83010
Coffee7926
Butler77936
Covington76321
Pike7187
Marion59426
Barbour5906
Marengo57817
Lowndes57624
Bullock49411
Hale49026
Bibb4655
Washington46113
Winston45911
Perry4524
Wilcox44510
Monroe4276
Pickens42010
Randolph40511
Conecuh39810
Sumter37119
Lawrence3643
Macon34415
Crenshaw3398
Cherokee2938
Choctaw29212
Clay2785
Geneva2742
Henry2733
Greene25611
Lamar2372
Fayette2345
Cleburne1311
Coosa1063
Out of AL00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 130458

Reported Deaths: 1326
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Shelby24251321
Davidson21528221
Rutherford693857
Hamilton660558
Knox505141
Williamson374125
Sumner358174
Unassigned31223
Out of TN299320
Wilson243423
Bradley210215
Montgomery208515
Sevier19899
Putnam193220
Robertson161621
Trousdale15836
Hamblen147615
Blount141415
Washington13912
Maury13679
Madison128223
Tipton124712
Sullivan113616
Hardeman102718
Bedford96211
Macon87413
Lake8000
Loudon7883
Gibson7879
Dickson7574
Fayette7448
Anderson7437
Bledsoe7342
Dyer7159
Henderson6612
Jefferson6394
Obion6394
Cheatham6249
Lawrence6197
Carter6026
Coffee5943
McMinn59120
Warren5874
Haywood5817
Rhea5742
Greene5619
Weakley5575
Lauderdale5529
Hawkins53410
Cumberland5307
Cocke5255
Roane5162
Hardin4998
Monroe47910
Smith4764
McNairy4106
Giles40213
DeKalb3842
Carroll3796
Franklin3634
Marshall3364
Lincoln3351
White3275
Johnson3190
Henry3161
Claiborne3010
Crockett2946
Hickman2921
Campbell2641
Chester2512
Overton2501
Marion2405
Polk2375
Decatur2343
Wayne2322
Grainger2171
Unicoi1800
Benton1791
Union1700
Cannon1600
Jackson1451
Humphreys1353
Morgan1351
Scott1342
Grundy1262
Sequatchie1171
Meigs1150
Fentress1060
Clay860
Perry860
Hancock842
Lewis811
Stewart810
Moore740
Houston630
Van Buren430
Pickett401

Community Events