Panama City officials allow restaurants to offer extra outdoor seating

Florida Coronavirus News

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — After closing for a few months, local restaurants are now allowed to operate under certain restrictions.

Pam Armstrong owns Tom’s Hot Dogs in downtown Panama City. Her restaurant is currently open and she is following the governor’s executive order. 

“It’s limited to how many I can have inside, so it is hurting the numbers of people that are coming in,” said Armstrong.  

Panama City officials are working to help owners like Pam, who do not have a large inside dining room. 

At Tuesday’s city commission meeting, commissioners extended the Sidewalk Cafe Program to all restaurants in Panama City. 

“It extends seating out into the sidewalks and into some of the parking spaces in front of their restaurants,” said Panama City City Manager Mark McQueen. 

All restaurants will now be allowed to apply for a permit to extend their seating for the next 90 days. 

“This certainly helps to add more patrons to what they are trying to do since they are limited on the inside seating,” said McQueen. 

Armstrong says this is going to help her business and she will definitely be applying for the permit in the near future.  

“To have the additional seating due to the limited number of seats inside, I went from 65 seats down to 15 so to have that additional seating outside will definitely benefit the business,” said Armstrong.

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