Outdoor dining rules set
by Ron Gregory
Huntington – Mayor Steve Williams has signed an executive order establishing temporary rules that expedite the process for restaurants to set up outdoor dining.
The temporary rules will become effective Monday, May 4, the date that West Virginia Governor Jim Justice has set for outdoor dining to resume, and will sunset on the date that Justice declares that indoor dining at restaurants is permitted.
“Our eclectic mix of locally-owned restaurants is an integral reason why our downtown has become such a vibrant destination,” Williams said. “The COVID-19 pandemic has forced restaurateurs to adapt their business models and remain flexible. Much like the city assisting our restaurants with parking accommodations when many of them adjusted to curbside service, these temporary rules will assist them as they emerge from the governor’s stay-at-home order.”
There is no fee for restaurants that seek outdoor dining under the temporary rules. The rules also do not permanently affect or repeal any requirements of the codified ordinances addressing outdoor dining set forth in Chapter 1340. All applicable laws, rules and directives of the West Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Administration will also apply to determine whether alcoholic beverages may be served in an outdoor dining setting.
Any restaurant seeking to commence outdoor dining under these temporary rules must submit a plan for the location to City of Huntington Business Services Liaison Sharon Pell at firstname.lastname@example.org. Pell can also be reached at 304-696-5540, Ext. 2315. The plan does not need to be in any specific form, but, at minimum, should show the location and number of tables, along with the size of space to be used. The plan also must comply with social distancing guidelines that Justice has established for outdoor dining.