One of the unique ways that bars and restaurants in Eastern Iowa have stayed in business during the closures and limitations of the ongoing pandemic, is to sell alcoholic beverages to go. You can call up your favorite establishment and grab a growler of your favorite brew, or a couple of large margaritas to go. But now, those bars and restaurants are facing some new regulations on how they can sell those to-go drinks.

KCRG reports that the Iowa Alcoholic Beverage Division released the new regulations on the sale of to-go beverages. The new rules prohibit bars and restaurants from selling alcoholic drinks in paper or styrofoam cups, or plastic cups intended for one-time use. Drink containers can also NOT have a hole for a straw or for sipping.

Why the new rules? It now makes it easier for police officials to tell if someone has an open container in the vehicle. That was the one question that I had when bars and restaurants announced they'd be selling drinks to-go. Would this unknowingly lead to a spike in drinking and driving charges? Police officials say both the driver and the establishment are responsible for keeping the to-go beverage sealed on the way home. Police say that they want to educated the public on the new policies, but will issue fines if need be.

KCRG reports that the Iowa Alcoholic Beverage Division says that drivers with an open container of alcohol can be fined $200, and bars and restaurants not selling sealed to-go drinks face having their license revoked.

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