SEABROOK, Texas – A Seabrook bar defiantly reopened Sunday night after the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission suspended its permit for 30 days for not following health guidelines Saturday.
BARge 295 is one of 12 Texas bars, including one in Houston, that were penalized for not maintaining occupancy limits and social distancing guidelines.
In a post on Facebook, the bar wrote that they “will fight” the temporary license suspension.
“To be clear. We have had zero reported cases from our staff or customers. We have not been shut down. We have been issued a temporary liquor license suspension. Which we will fight. Our establishment and kitchen is still open. We will adjust. We will protest and we will defend our rights. We will be closed Monday and Tuesday as previously stated to put in new transformers and power Main. We will reopen Wednesday for all Texans and red blooded Americans!! This BS needs to end now. Come out and support local businesses,” the bar wrote.
Bar regular, Dawn Allen, said she was at the restaurant when officers arrived.
“We were sitting right there; a table of six. (There were) no more than 30 people upstairs, it holds 96. No one was on the patio, no one was downstairs,” Allen said.
Jeff Schafer, general manager of BARge 295 told KPRC 2 the establishment has been operating in accordance with Governor Greg Abbott’s guidelines.
Per the state’s re-opening requirements, bars can operate at 50% capacity, restaurants at 75% and both must adhere to six-foot social distancing rules. Any bar or restaurant that is not complying will be liable to be cited.
Schafer said he does not believe the citation is legal and told KPRC 2 Barge 295 owners plan to appeal. According to Schafer, the bar and restaurant will continue to serve alcohol unless their lawyers advise otherwise.
According to TABC, a second citation could result in a 60-day liquor license suspension.