Orlando leaders vote on ordinance differentiating bars, restaurants, clubs

The Orlando City Council on Monday voted unanimously on an ordinance to categorize restaurants, bars, and nightclubs differently.  

A restaurant is an establishment where more than 50% of its business comes from food sales.  A bar has less than 50% of sales generated by food.  The third category is nightclubs. 

"I think overall it’s a good thing. It’s important for safety reasons, limiting disturbances for our neighbors so that the right types of uses go in the right areas of the city," said Monica McCown, the co-owner of Artisan’s Table.

This is one of a handful of ordinances proposed a large fight led to a shooting back in July in front of Wall Street Plaza – a complex of bars, restaurants, and nightclubs – that injured seven people. No arrests have been made. 

Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer said this ordinance will make it easier for the city to make tweaks where necessary.  

"I think quite frankly what you will see is maybe some different regulations relating to the establishments that want to operate after midnight. Perhaps a specialty permit for operations after midnight. We haven’t settled on anything just yet but this now unties our hands and gives us the ability to do that," Mayor Dyer said.  


Prior to this ordinance, he said restaurants, bars, and clubs were all lumped into one category and treated the same. 

"If you’re a restaurant that stays open until after midnight you wouldn’t have to follow the same protocols we may set up for bars or nightclubs," Mayor Dyer explained. 

Mayor Dyer pointed out that this change in classifications isn’t just for downtown. This will pertain to restaurants, bars, and clubs all over the city.  

Stay tuned to FOX 35 News for any changes that could stem from this ordinance change.