3 Tampa bars could lose alcohol licenses after failing to follow COVID-19 guidelines, city says

Hillsborough County

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – It could be last call for several Tampa bars.

Mayor Jane Castor issued a stern warning after Tampa bars and restaurants were seen packed on New Year’s Eve. She said the city is prepared to suspend or even revoke alcohol licenses.

The owners of three bars are now preparing for a showdown with the city on Thursday during a hearing at a Tampa City Council meeting.

Video from New Year’s Eve certainly got the attention of city leaders in early January. Local places were packed with people ignoring the city’s COVID-19 orders, according to the mayor.

In many cases, the crowds reached pre-pandemic size with people standing shoulder-to-shoulder with no masks.

Mayor Jane Castor called it “irresponsible,” not only for people out that night, but also the businesses who hosted them.

MacDinton’s in South Tampa along Howard Avenue is one of the bars on the list, as well as two Ybor City locations.

Tangra Nightclub and Ybor Cigars Plus are both located along 7th Avenue.

“It’s a dangerous time, you can’t let your guard down just because numbers are going down   we have to get through this next couple of months to see a de-escalation of the problem,” said patron Jim Fitzpatrick

The owners of all three locations will now appear before Tampa City Council leaders on Thursday for a hearing regarding alcohol sales.

8 On Your Side reached out to each establishment. However, all declined to comment, as did the city since this issue involves pending litigation.

“Well, I like this place a lot but if they’re letting too many people in, they should face the consequences,” said Fitzpatrick.

The council meeting is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m.. The hearing is slated for 1:30 p.m.

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April 24 2021 08:00 am

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