Fees waived for Hagerstown restaurants applying for temporary outdoor dining permit

Maryland

HAGERSTOWN, Md. (WDVM) — The City of Hagerstown has waived fees for restaurants applying for temporary outdoor dining area permits during the Maryland governor’s executive order permitting outdoor dining only.

Governor Larry Hogan issued an executive order this week which is allowing restaurants in Maryland to allow patrons, only if they are seated in an outdoor dining area with proper distancing and sanitization procedures. The openings begin at 5 p.m. on Friday, May 29.

With this, Hagerstown’s Mayor Bob Bruchey and the city council passed an emergency ordinance to allow the Zoning Administrator to approve temporary dining areas on private properties for existing restaurants and pubs, outside the normal Temporary Use permit process, according to a press release sent by the city on Friday. The application fees for this will be waived.

The city detailed the following requirements to apply for the temporary permit:

“The application must include illustrations of the intended layout of the eating areas, the location of tables and chairs and tents if proposed, and the fencing desired to be use if needed.  If a tent is desired, a tent permit is required to ensure the tent material meets fire safety standards and the tent is installed safely.  Businesses must provide access to restrooms for their patrons.  Once the temporary use permit expires, the temporary outdoor dining area must be removed and the site returned to its previous or better condition.”

City of Hagerstown on May 29, 2020

Hagerstown restaurants or pubs that wish to place tables and chairs on the public sidewalk must apply for a Sidewalk Café License through the City Engineering Department’s office, the city added. And any business wanting to provide alcohol in the outdoor dining area must receive approval from the Liquor Board, and fencing around the outdoor seating area will be required.

Hogan’s orders with allowing outdoor dining in the state come with the following safety procedures:

  • All staff must wear Face coverings
  • Patrons must be seated at least six feet away from each other, except for households seated together
  • Maximum number of people allowed to be seated together is six, except for members of the same household
  • Restaurant cannot serve food in a buffet style
  • Restaurant must disinfect the tables between each seating.

“The fight against this virus is by no means over,” Hogan said during his announcement on May 27. “Just because you can do something does not mean you should.”

As of May 29, the Maryland Department of Health reports the following statewide data on coronavirus:

Number of confirmed cases 50,988
Number of persons tested negative 233,530
Total testing volume 328,516
Number of confirmed deaths 2,348
Number of probable deaths 118
Currently hospitalized 1,296
Ever hospitalized 8,479
Released from isolation 3,571

In Washington County, there have been a total of 12 confirmed coronavirus-related deaths and 431 total confirmed cases of COVID-19 as of May 29.

Find an application for temporary outdoor dining at this link.

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