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Columbus Council Ends Bar And Restaurant Curfew

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Columbus City Council has repealed the city's 10 pm curfew on bars and restaurants. The action last night ends the order enacted in July. 

City and health officials cited a rise in COVID-19 cases in the 20-29 age group and a lack of social distancing and mask wearing at establishments as reasons for enacting the legislation.  Columbus Health Commissioner Dr. Mysheika Roberts told council members last night COVID-19 cases have decreased over the past several weeks.

"If we look at all cases in Franklin County, our cases have dropped by 37 percent," Roberts continued. "If we look at cases over the age of 21, our cases have dropped by 50 percent. Again, that's not just due to the action of bars having to have their last call early but all the other actions we've taken, including wearing your mask, practicing that social distancing, staying home when you're sick, and not having large gatherings. As a result of that and some legal issues, we feel we don't need this at this time. We definitely reserve the ability to revisit this if the need arises in the future."

While Columbus bars, restaurants, and nightclubs can return to regular hours of service, the statewide ban on alcohol sales after 10 pm remains in effect. Ohio Governor Mike DeWine said last week that the order is being reviewed, acknowledging the ban has cut into the profits of businesses.

Mike Foley joined WCBE in February 2000, coming from WUFT in Gainesville, Florida. He earned Broadcasting and Journalism degrees from the University of Florida.
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