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Nashville order to require businesses that serve alcohol to close by 10 pm

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WZTV) —Nashville officials are working on a new order that would require restaurants and businesses that serve alcohol to close at 10 p.m.

On Monday, with recommendation from board of health, Mayor Cooper said he directed the Metro Legal and Metro Public Health to begin working on a new order.

It would impact restaurants, restaurants that have become bars and other establishments that serve alcohol, Mayor Cooper said. Take-out orders and drive thrus will be allowed to be open normally past the 10 p.m. order. The new restriction is expected to be in place by Friday, July 24.

“This order is intended to enable our businesses to operate responsibly while also discouraging those who would come here and shirk their personal and societal responsibilities during this public health crisis,” Cooper said.

Mayor Cooper said "clearly more needs to be done" after videos emerged of a packed lower Broadway over the weekend.

Video showed gatherings of people, many without masks despite a mask mandate, congregating on the sidewalk. It's something Butch Spyridon, president and CEO, Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp said he's "extremely disappointed" in.

“We are aware of this situation and are extremely disappointed," Spyridon said. "The vast majority of Nashville businesses are complying, and this makes all of us look bad and uninformed. We obviously have a sidewalk enforcement problem as opposed to a business problem."

As of Tuesday morning, Metro Police said they haven't given out any citations, but have issued 6,138 of verbal warnings and handed out educational forms. Mayor Cooper insists that if the new 10 p.m. order is not effective, city leaders "will keep trying."

As part of the modified Phase 2 of reopening, all bars in Davidson County, known as "limited service restaurants" that derive the majority of their revenue from alcohol sales, are ordered to shut down until at least the end of July.

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