McKraut’s cited again; DPHSS working with AG on stronger penalties for PCOR1 violations

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After allowing in-restaurant dining a week ago, McKraut's was in the crosshairs of the Guam National Guard over the weekend, with Adjutant General Esther Aguigui issuing a memo specifically banning active-duty personnel from going to the restaurant. (PNC photo)

Over the weekend, Public Health says it was at McKraut’s again and cited the restaurant for not having outdoor tables spaced 6-feet apart and having more than the allowable amount of chairs per table.

Ludwig “Lutz” Uhmeyer, McKraut’s owner, in an interview with PNC, said: “Yes, one day I was told you can put six people per table, the next I was told it can only be five people … it just changes on a daily basis, I guess.”

Janela Carrera, Public Health spokesperson, says they’re working with McKraut’s to remedy all issues but they’ve received multiple complaints about them.

She also says they receive complaints about other restaurants as well and that they’re working with the Attorney General’s office to figure out a stronger response to noncompliance.

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“We’re working with them right now actually on what our authority is. Where we can assert that authority when it comes to being able to close down a restaurant related to violations of the Executive Order, related to the pandemic,” Carrera said.

Carrera says they’re looking at linking public nuisance complaints to a restaurant’s sanitary permits; Public Health could therefore suspend the permit and shut them down.

After allowing in-restaurant dining a week ago, McKraut’s was in the crosshairs of the Guam National Guard over the weekend, with Adjutant General Esther Aguigui issuing a memo specifically banning active-duty personnel from going to the restaurant.

What started as a few photos on social media of patrons dining in at McKraut’s in Inarajan later became the talk of the town, with the restaurant owner going on the defensive live with Newstalk K57 last week.

In that interview, Ludwig “Lutz” Uhmeyer said that everybody was happy and nobody got sick that night.

The restaurant was cited by Public Health for that infraction.

In an internal memo to Guam Guard active personnel this past Friday, the TAG singled out McKraut’s saying they’ve violated the Governor’s orders and are too high-risk.

Mark Scott, Guam National Guard PIO, said in an interview with NewsTalk K-57: “If we start having troopers go down [from COVID], really it compromises our ability to do that mission. So, it’s really important that we take extra steps, be extra cautious to ensure that not one of us gets infected – we just can’t afford to go down.”

Meanwhile, despite all the recent commotion, the McKraut’s owner says he still gets a lot of positive feedback from the community.

“In every business, there are people that love you and some people who hate you. I don’t know who called several times to Public Health, Guam Police also came and checked on me. But it’s okay, they haven’t shut me down so far,” Uhmeyer said.

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