Blueprint for a Safer Economy
This Industry Advisory summarizes the impact of this Order on businesses holding alcoholic beverage licenses.
Update: This Advisory was updated on March 23, 2021 to reflect new guidance and is intended to provide ABC licensees with additional information and aid them in understanding what they can and cannot do following the State Updates Blueprint to Allow Additional Activities for a Safe and Sustainable Reopening announcement made by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) on March 11, 2021, the Statewide Public Health Officer Order August 28, 2020 CDPH and Blueprint for a Safer Economy.
Disclaimer: Industry advisories are not regulatory, nor do they have the force of law. These advisories serve merely to help clarify what statutes/regulations mean. Please consult the statute, regulation, and/or an attorney before taking any action to ensure compliance with the law.
In accordance with the Blueprint, businesses will be able to operate at different levels based upon the tier of the county where they are located. Tiers (1 through 4) are determined by specified benchmarks related to the incidence of COVID-19 in each county and regulated by CDPH and local county officials. ABC licensees should identify which tier their county is currently placed by visiting the COVID-19 website and, based upon that, determine the level of operation that they may engage in by visiting Blueprint Activity and Business Tiers March 11, 2021 CDPH.
Although different ABC license types have different license privileges, for purposes of opening in accordance with the Blueprint, the issue is simply whether the licensed business serves bona fide meals or not. If no bona fide meals are served, then the licensed business must operate in accordance with the limitations that are established for Wineries, Breweries, Distilleries or Bars. If bona fide meals are served, then the licensed business may operate in accordance with the requirements established for Restaurants.
Licensees should also familiarize themselves with any additional restrictions imposed by their local public health agencies. If local requirements are stricter than the CDPH guidance, then those local restrictions apply.