CHICAGO (CBS) — City officials have issued two citations to Ann Sather Restaurant in Lakeview, after the owner, Ald. Tom Tunney (44th), admitted he allowed regular customers to eat inside in defiance of the ban on indoor dining. The alderman now faces possible fines of up to $10,500.

The city’s Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection said it issued two citations to the Ann Sather Restaurant at 909 W. Belmont Av. for violating the statewide order prohibiting indoor dining due to the pandemic.

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The amount of the fine Tunney faces will be determined at an administrative hearing, but one citation carries a fine of up to $10,000 and the other carries a fine of up to $500.

“On a sporadic basis, we have allowed a very limited number of our regular diners to eat inside the restaurant while observing social distancing and mask-wearing rules. This was error in judgement and won’t happen again,” Tunney said in a statement on Monday.

The alderman did not specify how many customers he has allowed to dine indoors or how often.

At least one viewer contacted CBS 2 over the weekend, saying they had been allowed to dine inside at the Ann Sather Restaurant on Belmont Avenue after calling ahead to ask about outdoor seating. The viewer claimed tables indoors were not adequately spread out, and at least one table had a party larger than six people, the per-table limit for outdoor dining.

“They just took us to a back room, and the front rooms were closed off for seating. We went into the back room and there was a table of eight or 10 people and three or four together tables not spaced out, and they just sat us down like we were regular people,” Melissa Smith told CB2 Investigator Megan Hickey.

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She said she felt uncomfortable. So she and her boyfriend got up and left before ordering. She called 311 to report it. She also said she was not a regular customer, though she had eaten there before.

Tunney declined CBS 2’s request for an interview but spoke with us less than two weeks ago, saying his restaurant was “heeding the advice of our health department and our mayor” when it came to Thanksgiving meal preps. He also acknowledged they were really struggling.

“Our business has been cut in half,” he said at the time.

Smith said she understands the motivation for a businesses like these that are hurting — through no fault of their own, but says there are better ways to show support.

“We try to eat outdoors in December in Chicago when we can and take out, and that’s why its hard to support a restaurant that’s ignoring all that,” she said.

This story has been corrected. City officials initially said both citations carried fines of up to $10,000 each, but later said one citation carries a fine of up to $10,000 and the other carries a fine of up to $500.

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