Pa. restaurants can now self-certify, operate at half capacity

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Starting Monday, once restaurants self-certify with the state, they can operate at half capacity.

In order to go from 25% to 50% capacity, restaurants will have to submit a self-certification form through the Department of Community and Economic Development’s website.

They need to show they are following the state’s COVID-19 guidelines.

In a statement, Secretary of Development Dennis Davin said, “This process is a simple, commonsense way for restaurants to increase their capacity and put themselves on the path to financial recovery, all while taking the necessary steps to protect their communities.”

With the capacity change, the state says alcohol sales must end at 11 p.m. to keep young people from congregating.

The Governor initially had them ending at 10 p.m., but made the switch after public outcry.

Several business owners and workers worry how less hours of operation will impact their profits.

There isn’t a penalty for business owners who don’t go through the self-certification process, but they are forced to stay at 25% capacity.

Before this, restaurants had been at 25% capacity, since stricter restrictions were reinstated in mid-July.

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