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The Minnesota Department of Public Safety Alcohol and Gambling Enforcement Division has notified Neighbor's on the Rum in Princeton it faces a 60-day suspension of its liquor license for violating Executive Order 20-99 by selling alcohol for on-premises consumption.

In a news release issued Wednesday evening, DPS-AGED stated it has documented evidence that Neighbor's and the Alibi Drinkery, Lakeville, opened for on-premises consumption of food and alcoholic beverages, including police incident reports and media reports that showed large crowds at the bar.

As a result of these actions, AGED intends to suspend the liquor licenses of these establishments for 60 days, pending a hearing before an administrative law judge. Further violations will result in the establishments being notified of the intent to revoke the licenses for five years.

Under Gov. Tim Walz’s Executive Order 20-99 Implementing a Four Week Dial Back on Certain Activities to Slow the Spread of COVID-19 (EO-99), all restaurants and bars are prohibited from selling alcohol for on-premises consumption from Nov. 20 at 11:59 p.m. through Friday, Dec. 18 at 11:59 p.m.

A coalition recently announced that a number of establishments had decided to open in violation of EO 20-99. 

“Most bars and restaurants are playing by the rules and following the law. Those that have chosen not to comply are putting the health of the community at risk, and we will hold them accountable,” said Public Safety Commissioner John Harrington.

In addition to today’s actions, DPS-AGED sent a letter to Boardwalk Bar & Grill LLC (BBG), East Grand Forks, clarifying that their license suspension is not effective until they have had the opportunity for a hearing before an administrative law judge. DPS-AGED had previously notified BBG that the 60-day suspension took effect on Dec. 13, 2020.

DPS-AGED sent a letter to the liquor industry on Dec. 13 with further information related to Executive Order 20-99, reminding licensees all restaurants and bars are prohibited from selling alcohol for on-premises consumption from Nov. 20, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. through Dec. 18, 2020, at 11:59 p.m.

Establishments with on-sale liquor licenses are allowed to sell beer and wine with takeout orders pursuant to legislation signed by Walz in April of this year.

Any liquor licensee found to be in violation of EO-99 may be issued a misdemeanor citation for the violation.

A second violation means the establishment will face a 60-day liquor license suspension, pending a hearing before an administrative law judge. 

A third or subsequent violation will result in a five-year revocation of the liquor license and the subsequent revocation of the establishment’s retail identification card (buyer’s card). Minn. Stat. § 340A.415.

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