PA lawmakers approve outdoor music bill for bars and restaurants


HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — The Pennsylvania State House and Senate have approved legislation that would allow restaurants, bars, taverns, beer halls and hotels with patios to have music during certain hours.

As amended, House Bill 1615 would allow all liquor licensees to provide amplified sound, up to 75 decibels beyond the property line, Sunday through Thursday between 10 a.m. and 9 p.m., and Friday and Saturday between 10 a.m. a.m. and midnight.

“This legislation is truly another tool that our operators can use to utilize our outdoor dining facilities and provide our customers with another entertainment opportunity,” said Lauren Brinjac, senior director of government affairs for Pennsylvania Restaurant and Lodging Association.

“Really right now the way they’ve put the rules in place, it just encourages people to break the rules who don’t really want to break and they just want to run a business,” said Jason Viscount, owner of Greystone Brew. House.

Three years ago, the Viscount was fined for playing music on the terrace of Greystone Public House in Lower Paxton Township, Dauphin County.

“We actually went to the Lower Paxton Township board and asked Lower Paxton to step down and fall under normal noise guidelines for areas,” Viscount said.

The law currently only allows wineries to have amplified sound.

Get daily news, weather, breaking news and alerts straight to your inbox! Sign up for abc27 newsletters here.

The provisions of the legislation extend the outdoor music options and limitations already available to wineries to all liquor licensees, including bars, taverns, restaurants, hotels, clubs and breweries.

“I think it will be great for the restaurant industry. And I think that gives everyone a level playing field. You know, outdoor entertainment attracts people,” the Viscount said.

The bill would also allow the sale of malt or brewed beverages produced by a brewery to non-licensees and licensees who sell malt or brewed beverages.

“These common-sense approaches will help an industry that has been devastated by the massive economic shutdown that these local businesses and their employees have had to endure,” said State Senator Kristin Phillips-Hill (R-York). “We are grateful for the swift passage of the amended bill, which will provide a major boost over these summer months to small businesses in York County and our Commonwealth.”

As of 2019, wineries are allowed to have similar noise levels during certain hours.

“The adoption of this law really came at the perfect time. We are coming into the height of summer and I know our operators are really looking forward to being able to use these provisions and the new provisions of this legislation,” said Brinjac.

If signed by Governor Wolf, the order will take effect immediately. His press officer said he was reviewing the bill.


Comments are closed.