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Under Emergency Rule #2, Santa Barbara County Temporarily Suspends Zoning Regulations and Permit Restrictions on Wineries and Wine Tasting Rooms Serving Food

In order to minimize the economic impacts of COVID-19, the County of Santa Barbara is providing a clear, quick path for wineries and wine tasting rooms to begin serving food inorder to operate in Stage 2 of Governor Newsom’s four-stage COVID-19 Resilience Roadmap.

On May 25, County Executive Officer Mona Miyasato, serving as the Director of Emergency Services, declared Emergency Rule #2, temporarily suspending County Code Chapter 35 Zoning Regulations and Permit Restrictions and any zoning development standards or regulations that otherwise prohibit or limit wineries and wine tasting rooms from serving food.

This temporary suspension of restrictions authorizes wineries and wine tasting rooms to serve food during the COVID-19 emergency, as long as they are compliant with state laws regulating retail food, alcohol, alcohol licensing and all local directives regarding reopening of businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic response, including certification or attestation of a COVID-19 protection plan.

This emergency rule went into effect immediately and will remain until 1) December 16, 2020; or 2) the proclaimed Santa Barbara County Local Emergency from the COVID-19 virus is terminated; or 3) the rule is superseded by the adoption of amendments to the County zoning ordinances by the Board of Supervisors, whichever is earlier.

The rule will be recommended to the County Board of Supervisors for their confirmation on June 2. Additionally, the County Planning and Development Department will present recommended zoning code amendments to the Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors in June 2020.

This emergency rule continues implementation of the County’s Small Business and Community Partnership Enhancement Program (SBCPEP)that launched on May 21 (see below) to allow businesses or other organizations to expand into adjacent public right-of-way outdoor areas in the unincorporated areas of the county to accommodate required social and physical distancing protocols and safe practices.

Contact The County

105 E. Anapamu St, Santa Barbara, CA 93101
Phone: 211