The state of Michigan announced today The Daily Grind, a small restaurant located on Portage Road in Portage was fined $2,000 on December 16th for what it terms "violation of the public health order put in place to control the spread of COVID-19 and protect public health by establishing restrictions on gatherings, including prohibiting gatherings of patrons in food service establishments."

The owner of the restaurant, Dave Morris, told WWMT News in November that he was on the verge of bankruptcy, "I'm considering it today. They wanted $525 today for my annual license, they have driven me broke. I have to make my house payment, I have to pay bills," Morris told the station.

As the current state order continues into the new year, stories like Morris' will likely become more frequent.

The state sent out the release today naming thirteen establishments, located all over the state. The fine is $1,000 for each violation of the public order.

The state says it sympathizes with the restaurant industry, but its goal is to get the number of Covid cases under control.

“The number of cases, the positivity rate, and hospital capacity have declined in recent weeks, taking stress off our hospitals and health care workers. We will continue to monitor the data and assess for any potential surges in cases after the holidays. Most food service establishments like restaurants and bars have helped play a critical role in the existing decline by following the order.” - Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive and chief deputy for health at MDHHS.

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