From The MoCo Conservative Editor
Marc Elrich, County Executive of Montgomery County, Maryland was served with a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) and preliminary injunction by Clarksburg Tavern, LLC on December 20, 2020.
Responding to Marc Elrich’s draconian overreach in his capacity as County Executive, the two owners of Clarksburg Tavern, a dining establishment run by mother/daughter duo Janice Allen and Ashley Mouktafi, believe that they stand on solid, legal ground and precedent set forth in Anne Arundel County, Maryland:
“Public health is at the core of the hospitality industry. We are not asking to return to full capacity; we are asking to have a chance to keep our staff employed and to keep our business afloat so we can make it through this Pandemic. The health of the public, including our community, guests, and staff has been our priority since day one; we have not had one positive case contract-traced back to our establishment since limits on indoor dining establishments took effect.
Clarksburg Tavern has food service licenses that require public health training on food borne illnesses, pathogens, viruses, and communicable diseases. In addition to this training on alcohol serving, the public trusts our judgment to keep them safe and prevent alcohol-related accidents and tragedies from occurring. We should be trusted to monitor these new regulations imposed by County Executive Marc Elrich as well.”
The TRO comes in response to Elrich’s latest directive to ban indoor dining in all dining establishments in Montgomery County, putting most restaurant staff (including chefs, servers, busboys, hosts/hostesses, owners, and others) out of work and unemployed right before what should be the one of the most joyful times of the year.
Clarksburg Tavern’s lawsuit also comes on the heels of the Restaurant Association of Maryland filing similar TRO’s and preliminary injunctions in Baltimore City and Montgomery and Prince George’s counties.
Will Clarksburg Tavern’s legal complaint be upheld by a Montgomery County Circuit Judge? Owners Allen and Mouktafi and their legal counsel, State Delegate Dan Cox, say yes:
“We have to find common ground that makes sense and is supported by facts. Restaurant owners and their staff are committed to public health. We are the trusted professionals because we serve food and alcohol; that takes training, preparation, and oversight.”
A similar order in Anne Arundel County, Maryland helped set a precedent for other counties in the State when a judge issued a temporary order to block Anne Arundel County Executive Steuart Pittman, Jr.’s measure to prohibit indoor dining.
- Main image credit: https://coronamontgomery.info/
- Clarksburg Tavern images courtesy of Ashley Mouktafi