Texas Bar Owners Lobby for Relief as Bills Stack Up During Governor's Closure Order

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Trade group the Texas Bar & Nightclub Alliance has hired a lobbyist to pressure state leaders to aid liquor-serving businesses shuttered by Gov. Greg Abbott's closure order, KSAT reports.

Gov. Greg Abbott’s late June order to fight growing COVID-19 infections by closing establishments that make 51% or more of their revenue via alcohol sales will kill the industry if the state can't offer a lifeline, owners say.

“Bar owners are desperate and struggling to survive,” Greg Barrineau, owner of San Antonio bar Drink Texas, told the news station.

Michael Specia, owner of the Highlander Bar & Grill, told KSAT there's a double standard that allows big chains to reopen while smaller, locally owned establishments can't.

“I don’t understand why they’re picking on the little guy,” he said.

Barrineau added that local bar owners are pleading the governor to take quick action.

“Please let us open, even if it’s at 25% occupancy,” Barrineau told KSAT. “We’ll be happy to open at 25% occupancy. We will practice all the safety measures and everything that any restaurant bar does. We will take care of business. We will do it right. And we will protect our customers.”

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