HARRISBURG, Pa. — A total of 15 restaurants across the state -- including 11 in Central Pennsylvania -- were closed for refusing to comply the Department of Agriculture's COVID-19 mitigation enforcement actions between Jan. 11-17, according to numbers released by the department Wednesday.
One of the restaurants was A Taste of Sicily in Palmyra, Lebanon County, which has run afoul of the state's COVID-19 enforcement efforts before.
Two other Lebanon County restaurants received closure notices, as well as four restaurants in Dauphin County, three in Lancaster County, and one in Cumberland County, the department said.
All of the restaurants refused to comply with visiting inspectors, according to the department. Three were permitted to re-open after inspectors later determined they were in compliance.
The Central PA restaurants closed were:
- Brad's Pizza & Subs, 1548 Spring Rd., Carlisle
- Kuppy's Diner, 12 Brown St., Middletown
- Denny's Lennies, 3828 Peter's Mountain Rd., Halifax
- Tony's Pizzeria & Restaurant, 185 S. Second St., Highspire
- Villa Schiano, 4900 State Route 209, Elizabethville
- Brickerville House, 228th Division Hwy, Brickerville
- Bright's Drive-In, 1025 S State St., Ephrata
- Hometown Kitchen, 18 Furnace Rd, Quarryville
- Country Fare Restaurant, 498 E Lincoln Ave., Myerstown
- Old Willow Tree Café, 10 N College Ave., Myerstown
- Taste of Sicily, 132 E Main St., Palmyra
The Department of Agriculture's COVID-19 enforcement efforts are intended to ensure restaurants follow state mitigation mandates, including the masking of employees, offering carry-out, delivery and curbside pick-up services.
From January 11-17, the department said, its Bureau of Food Safety performed 720 inspections, 114 of which were complaint-driven, with 107 of those COVID specific complaints.
The department received 220 food facility COVID-19 related complaints, and 138 of those complaints were referred to local and county health jurisdictions.
Inspectors closed 15 restaurants by order after each was confirmed to be operating in violation of the Order of the Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Health for Mitigation and Enforcement and the Order of the Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for Mitigation, Enforcement, and Immunity Protections issued on November 23, 2020 and refused to make corrections while the inspector was present.
Three facilities were permitted to reopen after a re-inspection verified compliance.
A county-by-county breakdown of COVID-19 restaurant enforcement actions can be found on the Department of Agriculture’s website.