Burbank bar owner worried LA County's vaccine mandate is already hurting business

BURBANK, Calif. (KABC) -- If you're planning on visiting a bar in Los Angeles County this weekend - outside the city of L.A. - make sure you have your vaccine card on you or a picture because bars, breweries, wineries and nightclubs are enforcing.

"No complaints whatsoever. We had the hostess showing them cards and ID's and it was 100% success," said Giovanni D'Andrea, the owner of Urban Press Winery in Burbank.

A giant sign greets patrons outside the establishment alerting them proof of vaccination is required if you want to sit inside. Thankfully, the winery has an outdoor patio, but, if the bar, winery, nightclub, or brewery in L.A. County you're visiting doesn't and you're not vaccinated, you're out of luck.

D'Andrea doesn't think the vaccine mandate will hurt business. It was enacted Thursday and he says everything went smoothly.

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Los Angeles County began imposing COVID-19 vaccination requirements at indoor portions of bars, wineries, distilleries, nightclubs and lounges.



"If people believe that being vaccinated and going to an establishment that's vaccinated, I think we can consider ourselves one of the safest places in L.A. County," said D'Andrea.

But, not everyone is as hopeful.

Heros Bidrosian has owned Burbank's Fantasia Billiards since 1991 and is worried the mandate is already hurting business, but says he has no other choice but to enforce.

"You can see right now it's only two or three pool tables playing. It's supposed to be like 10 pool tables now. I'm receiving emails from customers. We're not going to show up if you're going to enforce the vaccination. Simple. They're not going to come," said Bidrosian.

Bidrosian also worries his security guards won't be able to tell whether a vaccine card in hand or on someone's phone - is real.

"If they're not vaccinated, they're going to lie they're vaccinated that they want to come in. They show me a paper, piece of paper, I don't know if it's true or not. Ok, go in. But, I don't know how to prove that. Is it correct or not. Is it true or not," said Bidrosian.

Gov. Newsom signed a law Friday that greatly increases opportunities for outdoor dining, which may help many of the businesses impacted by these vaccine mandates.

The City of L.A.'s vaccine mandate takes effect in November and applies to bars, hair salons, gyms and indoor restaurants.

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Mayor Eric Garcetti has signed an ordinance that will require people in Los Angeles to show proof of full COVID-19 vaccination before entering indoor restaurants, bars, gyms and other establishments with enforcement starting Nov. 29.



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