Court case against Shooters Grill dismissed, but license still suspended as county, owner negotiate reopening |

Court case against Shooters Grill dismissed, but license still suspended as county, owner negotiate reopening

Matthew Palomvi talks with his mother Sandra, who is visiting from Minnesota, after they had breakfast at Shooter Grill in Rifle on May 14. In defiance of a cease and desist order Shooter’s owner Lauren Boebert opened her business to customers outside of her Third Street business on May 14.
Kyle Mills/Glenwood Springs Post Independent

Attorneys for Garfield County and the owner of Shooters Grill in Rifle are in talks to reinstate the restaurant’s food service license, but the matter is no longer before the courts.

The county on Tuesday moved to dismiss the temporary restraining order against Shooters that was filed May 13. However, the license suspension that occurred two days later remains in effect, Garfield County Attorney Tari Williams said.

“It was not necessary to proceed with the hearing … due to the variance approval and the new [governor’s] executive order,” Williams said of the latest actions by the state allowing restaurants to reopen at 50% capacity.

Shooters owner Lauren Boebert was cited for operating against public health orders when she reopened to in-restaurant dining May 9, in open defiance of the rules aimed at controlling the spread of COVID-19 in Colorado.

When Boebert continued to serve customers on site, including setting up an outdoors dining area, the county suspended her restaurant license. The district court action regarding the restraining order was separate from the license suspension.

Her hearing was continued from May 18 until Tuesday morning, until the county’s motion was filed and Boebert agreed to have the case dropped.

“It would not have been appropriate to discuss holding her to an inapplicable standard,” Williams said of the reasoning for vacating the court action.

In the meantime, the County Attorney’s Office is working with legal counsel for Boebert to reopen the restaurant in accordance with the county’s variance and the state’s relaxed rules, Williams said.

“When her license is reinstated, she will be expected to comply with the terms of new orders, just like every other restaurant in the county,” Williams said. “That is still in the works.”

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