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H536: Temp Outdoor Restaurants for Outdoor Seating. Latest Version

GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF NORTH CAROLINA

SESSION 2019

HOUSE BILL 536
RATIFIED BILL

AN ACT TO AUTHORIZE CERTAIN EXISTING ESTABLISHMENTS TO OFFER AND
OPERATE OUTDOOR DINING AND BEVERAGE SERVICE OPTIONS WHILE ALSO

SAFEGUARDING THE PUBLIC HEALTH TO PREVENT THE SPREAD OF
CORONAVIRUS DISEASE 2019 (COVID-19).

The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:

SECTION 1. Notwithstanding any declaration of emergency issued under Article
1A of Chapter 166A of the General Statutes or any municipal or county ordinance adopted under

that Article related to the public health emergency created by COVID-19, any establishment that
prepares or serves food or drink, as defined in and regulated under Part 6 of Article 8 of Chapter
130A of the General Statutes, may open and operate its food and drink service for on-premises
consumption provided all the following apply:
(1) The establishment was in existence on March 10, 2020, is properly licensed
and permitted, and holds all necessary State and local regulatory permits,
including, if applicable, any necessary ABC permits.

(2) If the establishment holds ABC permits, the establishment is not any of the
following:
a. A private club as defined by G.S. 18B-1000.
b. A private bar as defined by G.S. 18B-1000.
c. A winery permitted pursuant to G.S. 18B-1101 or G.S. 18B-1102.
d. A distillery permitted pursuant to G.S. 18B-1105.

(3) The food and drink service operation for on-premises consumption is limited
to any authorized indoor seating and to the outdoor seating location. The
owner or owners of that outdoor seating location must have granted the
establishment permission to use the location for its food and drink service
operation.
(4) The outdoor food and drink service seating capacity is limited to fifty percent
(50%) of the current indoor seating capacity of the establishment, or 100

customers, whichever is less.
(5) The outdoor seating location is on the same parcel or is contiguous to or in
close proximity to the underlying establishment and contains or has access to
lavatory and toilet facilities for employees and customers as required for such
establishments under rules established by the North Carolina Department of
Health and Human Services.
(6) If the establishment holds ABC permits and serves alcohol pursuant to those

permits, the outdoor seating location must have delineated vertical boundaries
that the consumer would recognize as indicating the boundaries that
physicallyseparate areas where consumption of alcohol is allowed from areas
open to the general public other than customers of the establishment.

*H536-v-8* (7) The establishment maintains and enforces the social distancing requirements
recommended by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and
the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.
(8) The establishment complies with all rules and regulations promulgated by the
Division of Public Health of the North Carolina Department of Health and
Human Services applicable to outdoor food and drink service.
(9) The outdoor seating location may include a covered patio or areas covered by

tents, awnings, tarps, umbrellas, or other similar coverings. For purposes of
this subdivision, "tent" shall mean a temporary structure, with or without side
panels, constructed by draping or otherwise attaching sheets of fabric, plastic,
or other material to a framework of poles or supports.
(10) The outdoor seating location may include areas on a public sidewalk if the
local government allows through its ordinances or permitting process the use
of public sidewalks for the service of and consumption of food or drink and

the establishment obtains any necessary local government approval. Nothing
in this act is intended to require a local government to approve the use of
public sidewalks for the service of and consumption of food or drink.
(11) The outdoor seating location may include areas on a public street if the local
government allows through its ordinances or permitting process the use of
public streets during periods of temporary street closure for the service of and

consumption of food or drink and the establishment obtains any necessary
local government approval. Nothing in this act is intended to require a local
government to temporarily close public streets for the service of and
consumption of food or drink or to allow the service of and consumption of
food or drink on public streets during a period of temporary closure.
SECTION 2. Notwithstanding any declaration of emergency issued under Article
1A of Chapter 166A of the General Statutes or any municipal or county ordinance adopted under

that Article related to the public health emergency created by COVID-19, any (i) private club or
private bar as defined by G.S. 18B-1000, (ii) winery permitted pursuant to G.S. 18B-1101 or
G.S. 18B-1102, or (iii) distillery permitted pursuant to G.S. 18B-1105 may open and serve
alcohol for on-premises consumption provided all the following apply:
(1) The establishment was in existence on March 10, 2020, is properly licensed
and permitted, and holds all necessary State and local regulatory permits,
including any necessary ABC permits.

(2) The service is limited to an outdoor seating location and the owner or owners
of that outdoor seating location have granted the establishment permission to
use the location for its service.
(3) The outdoor seating location is on the same parcel or is contiguous to or in
close proximity to the underlying establishment and contains or has access to
lavatory and toilet facilities for employees and customers as required for such

establishments under rules established by the North Carolina Alcoholic
Beverage Control Commission.
(4) The outdoor seating location has delineated vertical boundaries that the
consumer would recognize as indicating the boundaries that physically
separate areas where consumption of alcohol is allowed from areas open to
the general public other than customers of the establishment.
(5) The outdoor service seating capacity is limited to fifty percent (50%) of the

current indoor seating capacity of the establishment, or 100 customers,
whichever is less.

Page 2 House Bill 536-Ratified (6) The establishment maintains and enforces the social distancing requirements
recommended by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and
the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.
(7) The establishment complies with all rules and regulations promulgated by the
Division of Public Health of the North Carolina Department of Health and
Human Services applicable to outdoor food and drink service.
(8) The outdoor seating location may include a covered patio or areas covered by

tents, awnings, tarps, umbrellas, or other similar coverings. For purposes of
this subdivision, "tent" shall mean a temporary structure, with or without side
panels, constructed by draping or otherwise attaching sheets of fabric, plastic,
or other material to a framework of poles or supports.
(9) The outdoor seating location may include areas on a public sidewalk if the
local government allows through its ordinances or permitting process the use
of public sidewalks for the service of and consumption of food or drink and

the establishment obtains any necessary local government approval. Nothing
in this act is intended to require a local government to approve the use of
public sidewalks for the service of and consumption of food or drink.
(10) The outdoor seating location may include areas on a public street if the local
government allows through its ordinances or permitting process the use of
public streets during periods of temporary street closure for the service of and

consumption of food or drink and the establishment obtains any necessary
local government approval. Nothing in this act is intended to require a local
government to temporarily close public streets for the service of and
consumption of food or drink or to allow the service of and consumption of
food or drink on public streets during a period of temporary closure.
SECTION 3. The outdoor seating area authorized in Sections 1 and 2 of this act shall
not be prohibited by a municipality or county because the outdoor seating area is not a permitted

use for operation of food and drink services under zoning ordinances.
SECTION 4. This act is effective when it becomes law and expires upon the later of
(i) 30 days after any declaration of emergency prohibitions and restrictions applicable expire or
are otherwise terminated to permit the establishment to open for full unrestricted service of food
and drink or (ii) October 31, 2020.
In the General Assembly read three times and ratified this the 28 day of May, 2020.

s/ Philip E. Berger
President Pro Tempore of the Senate

s/ Tim Moore

Speaker of the House of Representatives

_____________________________________
Roy Cooper

Governor

Approved __________.m. this ______________ day of ___________________, 2020

House Bill 536-Ratified Page 3