The Utah Liquor Law Enforcement Agency will administer the state's new liquor laws and regulations with "reasonableness and fairness," says Lt. Mitch Ingersoll.
Ingersoll, who heads a force of 20 agents, said that despite debate over what it will take to avoid violating the new liquor regulations, enforcement procedures won't change."We'll make open premise (restaurant) checks like always, and what we perceive as a violation will be referred to the (liquor) commission, like always," he said.
Ingersoll said his agency has met with Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control compliance officials, has reviewed the law and the proposed regulations and, for the time being, "won't change our procedures at all."
He said restaurants that have been careful to comply with current regulations will probably have no trouble in complying with new regulations dealing with liquor service in restaurant holding areas and service to dining tables.
Officers will not interpret as a violation incidents where wine is delivered to a table to be chilled before patrons have finished their cocktails, Ingersoll said.
However, they will interpret as a violation the sale of more than one mini-bottle to a patron at a time, he warned.
As to service at holding areas, it probably will be considered a violation where a holding area is relatively uncrowded yet patrons are circulating in the area carrying alcoholic drinks, he siad.
If a waiting area is crowded, enforcement agents will have to make "judgment calls" as to whether liquor service is being conducted within the specified "reasonable proximity" to dining tables.