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TABC begins spring break crackdown as Texas prepares to lift COVID-19 restrictions

The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission will have agents spread across the Lone Star State to conduct undercover operations and make sure bars are following rules.

AUSTIN, Texas — As Texas prepares to lift all coronavirus restrictions statewide, the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission is launching undercover spring break operations across the Lone Star State.

The TABC will have agents going to bars to make sure they aren’t serving minors or overserving customers, TABC spokesperson Chris Porter said.

“Our agents will be going across the state visiting bars and restaurants and popular college communities, as well as the Texas Gulf Coast, to ensure that businesses have the resources and that they're able to comply with those state rules in order to keep the people of Texas safe,” Porter said.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, TABC agents have focused on enforcing statewide restrictions at bars, doing a lot more inspections each week. So, for this year’s spring break crackdown, Porter said agents are even more prepared for ramped-up inspections.

“We'll still be out there looking for things like intoxicated patrons or minors that were sold alcohol. We will no longer be looking for COVID-19 related guidelines,” Porter said.

The TABC did its last major spring break enforcement in 2019 and found about a 97% compliance rate at bars statewide. In Austin, agents went to 400 bars, restaurants or convenience stores and found 34 violations.

The agency also has teams looking at any intelligence that could help them find other areas of concern, Porter said.

The extra enforcement is expected to last through late March.

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