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Liquor permits suspended for 3 Houston clubs accused of violating Gov. Abbott's order

The permit suspensions come after the TABC inspected the businesses this weekend.

HOUSTON — The liquor permits for three Houston-area clubs have been suspended after the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission found violations of state requirements to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

The permit suspensions come after the TABC inspected the businesses this weekend.

Emergency suspension orders have been issued to:

Houston Grooves LLC (Grooves), 2300 Pierce Street, Houston

  • 30-day suspension
  • Violation date: Jan. 16

2301 Entertainment LLC (Cle’), 2301 Main Street, Houston

  • 60-day suspension issued Jan. 19
  • Previous suspension issued Sept. 8, 2020 (30 days)
  • Violation date: Jan. 16-17

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Spire Reception Hall LLC (Spire), 1720 Main Street, Houston

  • 90-day suspension issued Jan. 19
  • Previous suspensions issued July 1, 2020 (30 days) and Oct. 20, 2020 (60 days)
  • Violation date: Jan. 17

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These businesses are accused of violating Gov. Greg Abbott’s Executive Order GA-32, which requires businesses selling alcohol for on-premise consumption to comply with capacity limits as well as social distancing and facial covering requirements.

Under the Alcoholic Beverage Code, these businesses are entitled to a hearing before a judge to affirm the TABC decision. The emergency orders will remain in effect pending the end of the suspension or a judge’s ruling.

Since June 26, the TABC has conducted nearly 30,000 inspections, finding fewer than 800 total infractions.

On Thursday, Grooves released the following statement defending their actions: 

"For more than 9 years, Grooves of Houston has consistently maintained compliance of capacity standards, TABC regulations, city ordinances, and current COVID-19 restrictions. 

As an entertainment venue, complaints are commonplace and yet, we have never received an infraction for violating any mandate. 

The Houston Police Department (HPD) and Houston Fire Marshall have constantly found Grooves of Houston to operate within government standards. HPD had just confirmed such compliance prior to the most recent TABC inspection. 

We had been regulating admission well below our maximum capacity and adhered to the 50% capacity requirement in place. Guests and staff are required to wear face coverings prior to entering the venue and social distancing is reinforced with proper signage posted at the front entry and throughout the venue.

Grooves of Houston has taken assertive steps to remain compliant with all COVID-19 standards since reopening last year. We have purchased branded face coverings, face shields, and hand sanitizing stations. 

We have been vigilant in disinfecting the venue on a weekly basis by investing in an in-house sanitizing system. We have been mindful and active in enforcing capacity restrictions, as well as training and educating our staff with virus updates and city restrictions. 

With a strong reputation for maintaining an excellent standard of compliance, we will continue to keep the health and well-being of our guests and staff a top priority."

For more information about current requirements under Gov. Abbott’s order, click here.