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Owner of Santa Fe, Farmington Weck’s to comply with public health orders

Customers head toward a Weck’s in Santa Fe on Monday. The restaurant remained open on Monday in defiance of an order from Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham. However, the restaurant’s owner reversed course Tuesday, according to a news release. (Eddie Moore/Albuquerque Journal)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — After defying the latest public health order barring indoor dining at restaurants, the owner of the Santa Fe and Farmington locations of Weck’s reversed course and said his restaurants will begin complying with the orders today, according to a news release.

Michael Dennis,┬áthe licensed owner of the Santa Fe and Farmington Weck’s locations, encouraged restaurants across the state to “band together and stay open” when Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s ban on indoor dining went into effect Monday, according to a statement circulated on social media.

Dennis said in the statement he was supported by his customers, and on Monday customers could be seen going into the Santa Fe location for indoor dining.

All other locations of Weck’s, complied with the order and released a statement saying the other “locations are not affiliated with the decisions he is making for his restaurants.”

On Tuesday, however, Dennis issued a release stating his restaurants would begin complying with the order after receiving a warning from the Health Inspector that his food permit would be pulled if he did not comply.

“The decision to remain open was not to be difficult or non-compliant,” he said in a statement. “We requested more time for the Governor to take a balanced approach.”

While patio dining is still allowed on a limited basis, Dennis added that neither of his restaurant’s locations have patios.

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