NewsLocal News


Baltimore restaurants react to judge ruling in favor of city's dining ban

Baltimore Dining.jpg
Posted at 3:28 PM, Dec 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-24 17:10:51-05

BALTIMORE — Baltimore restaurants call a judge’s decision to uphold the mayor’s dining ban a disappointment, but remain optimistic the restrictions will be overturned.

Phillips Seafood restaurant released a statement saying, ”The Phillips Family and restaurant management are extremely disappointed in the ruling. The decision hurts our staff and business.”

Morgan McCully, who is a bartender at Cat’s Eye Pub in Fells Point, also expressed dissatisfaction with the judge’s ruling. He believes the city should roll back restrictions and allow restaurants to open at 25 percent capacity

“Go down to even 15 percent,” he said. “At least something so people can still get through the next couple months and try and recoup what they loss already.”

McCully added, “I’m hopeful that we can find a way to all agree and be safe and still be able to operate at something a little bit more than where we are now."

In a statement, Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott said:

My decision to temporarily restrict in-person dining was not an easy one, but was necessary given the science and critical role Baltimore’s hospitals play in the COVID-19 response and in providing critical care for Maryland residents statewide. We will continue to evaluate the COVID metrics on infections, hospitalizations and deaths and I will ease restrictions when it is justifiable by the data.

As your Mayor, my top responsibility is ensuring our residents are healthy and safe. I call on all of our residents to make a point of supporting your local restaurants this holiday season as we get through this difficult and unprecedented time together."

RELATED: Local indoor dining bans to be challenged in court

Last week, the Restaurant Association of Maryland filed legal action against Baltimore over the jurisdiction's stricter rules on restaurants.

Marshall Weston, president & CEO of the Restaurant Association of Maryland, released a statement in response to Wednesday's ruling in Baltimore, saying:

“We are disappointed in today’s ruling that denied our request for a temporary restraining order against Baltimore City’s ban on indoor and outdoor dining. This decision directly impacts thousands of employees who have lost their jobs and are unable to provide for their families, while also expediting the number of restaurants that will close permanently.”

RAM's motion for a preliminary injunction is scheduled for January 7.