Restaurants and bars under the microscope on New Year’s Eve

© Can Stock Photo / geargodz

If your plans for New Year’s Eve include going out to a bar or restaurant, you might notice officials from the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario.

They’ll be out in force in communities across Ontario, making sure those businesses comply with public health requirements.

As cases of COVID-19 continue to rise across the province, officials will be watching to make sure restaurants and bars are only filled to 50 per cent capacity, don’t sell alcohol past 10 p.m., and close an hour later.

They’ll be watching other food and drink establishments and strip clubs too.

“Liquor licensed businesses have an important role to play in keeping communities safe and the hospitality sector open,” read a release from the AGCO. “Although the vast majority of Ontario’s licensed establishments have been operating responsibly throughout the pandemic, the AGCO has had to take regulatory action against a number of establishments that have not.”

Some businesses have lost their liquor license for not following the rules.

CEO Tom Mungham also had a request for patrons.

“Anyone considering heading out to a bar or a restaurant should be aware of all the public health measures in place and not give establishment staff a difficult time for enforcing them,” he said.