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Pennsylvania bans alcohol sales at bars, restaurants on night before Thanksgiving

Pennsylvania bans alcohol sales at bars, restaurants on night before Thanksgiving
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Pennsylvania officials on Monday announced they will temporarily ban the sale of alcohol from bars and restaurants starting the day before Thanksgiving as coronavirus cases surge across the state.

Gov. Tom WolfTom WolfAmbitious House lawmakers look for promotions Follow the science: Charter school expansion is a rising tide that lifts all boats The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Split screen: Biden sells stimulus; GOP highlights border MORE (D) and Secretary of Health Rachel LevineRachel LevineOvernight Health Care: All adults in US now eligible for COVID-19 vaccine | White House launches media blitz to promote vaccines White House launches media effort to promote coronavirus vaccines Alarm grows over impact of states banning trans youth treatment MORE said the one-day ban would go into effect at 5 p.m. ET on Wednesday and would be lifted at 8 a.m. on Thanksgiving, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported.

"It turns out that the biggest day for drinking is the Wednesday before Thanksgiving," Wolf said, according to CNN. "When people get together in that situation, it leads to an increase in the exchange of fluids, that leads to an increase in infection."

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Executives with the Distilled Spirits Council, a national trade association, condemned the order.

"After shutting down all state liquor stores at the beginning of the pandemic, Governor Wolf once again takes the path of least resistance by shutting down alcohol sales for struggling restaurants and bars," David Wojnar, vice president of state government relations at the Distilled Spirits Council, said in a statement.

Wojnar argued that "times are hard enough" for small businesses around the Keystone State, calling on Wolf to "be looking for more ways" to amplify small companies and not take away critical revenue streams.

Meanwhile, Levine and Wolf announced an additional stay-at-home advisory beginning Monday, enforcing indoor dining capacity to remain at 25 percent to 50 percent, allowing retail accommodation to stay at 75 percent, and permitting gyms and salons to operate at 50 percent capacity.

Cases have risen dramatically in recent weeks, as the state reported a seven-day rolling average of 6,304 new daily cases last week. In early October, those figures were in the hundreds.