KANSAS CITY, Kan. — The Unified Government’s Public Health Department has updated its health order Tuesday, allowing bars, restaurants and taverns to serve customers until midnight and stay open until 12:30 a.m.
The order takes effect at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 13, in Wyandotte County.
The new order incorporates input from local small business owners provided during a recent meeting hosted by Mayor David Alvey that included the UG medical officers, as well as representatives from the KCK Chamber of Commerce, the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the Convention and Visitors Bureau.
The new order relaxes guidance from a local health order originally issued on Nov. 20, 2020, that required bars, restaurants and taverns to close at 10 p.m. That order was issued in response to a resurgence of COVID-19 cases in Wyandotte County.
“We had a very productive meeting late last week and I appreciate the time and valuable input we received from business owners, Chamber representatives and public health officials who participated,” Alvey said.
“Our goal is to find ways to help Wyandotte County businesses operate and succeed during these challenging times, while doing our utmost to contain the spread of COVID-19 in our community. Wyandotte County business owners have gone to great lengths to comply with and follow health protocols since the beginning of the pandemic and I’m pleased they’ll be able to expand their service hours in a safe and controlled manner.”
Alvey said they are are relying on bar and restaurant owners and managers to work diligently to enforce measures that will mitigate the potential spread of COVID-19 in their establishments.
Employees and customers must continue to wear face masks, maintain social distancing, disinfect and limit gatherings.
After the original order on Nov. 20, regarding service hours, Jackson County and Kansas City, Missouri, enacted similar measures based on public health officials’ recommendation. However, not all jurisdictions in the region adopted identical restrictions, creating inconsistencies across some state and county lines.
This new order for Wyandotte County is more consistent with bar and restaurant protocols currently in place in most neighboring counties, according to the county.
Restaurants, bars and taverns must still restrict customer capacity to no more than 50% of building capacity.
Businesses must close their doors by 12:30 a.m. and remain closed until at least 6 a.m. each day. Restaurants can operate between 12:30 a.m. and 6 a.m. for drive-through or delivery services only.
Customers must remain seated to the greatest extent possible, and all patrons must be masked except when actively eating or drinking.
Parties of guests (whether indoors or outdoors) are limited to no more than eight people. Guest parties must be socially distanced and at least six feet apart.