Food, liquor service bill advances in Virginia legislature

(AP Photo)

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A bill advancing in the Virginia Legislature would require restaurants with a liquor license to serve food at all times alcohol is served.

The bill’s sponsor, Republican Sen. Bill DeSteph, said Friday the measure is intended to clarify existing rules and if a restaurant is operating properly, the bill wouldn’t cost them any money.

The bill also says food must be available in all areas of a business where spirits are served.

A Senate committee passed the measure Friday.

A representative from the Virginia Assembly of Independent Baptists spoke in favor of the bill. No one spoke against it.

The committee is expected to hear another measure from DeSteph next week that would reduce the ratio of food sales that certain restaurants and catering businesses are required to meet.