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Montgomery County Alcohol Beverage Services’ Olney Liquor and Wine Store Temporarily Closed After Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19

For Immediate Release: Thursday, November 5, 2020

The Olney Liquor and Wine store operated by Montgomery County’s Alcohol Beverage Services (ABS) has temporarily closed after a store employee tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. ABS was made aware of the positive test on Wednesday, Nov. 4. The employee’s most recent day at work at the store, which is located at 17825 Georgia Ave. in Olney, was Saturday, Oct. 31.

Other store employees have been sent home with administrative pay to monitor symptoms through Sunday, Nov. 15.  No other employees have tested positive for COVID-19 at this time. The store is planning to reopen on Monday, Nov. 16, pending necessary staffing levels.

A specialized team was brought in to disinfect the store on the evening of Wednesday, Nov. 4. The deep cleaning involves chemical fogging and manual wiping down of all products and high contact surfaces in the store.

“We have closed the Olney store and health officials have asked all staff at this location to self-quarantine,” said Kent Massie, ABS chief of retail. “We have thoroughly cleaned the store and, pending staffing levels, we will open after the quarantine period has passed.”

In addition to deep cleaning, all ABS stores have installed plexiglass at each register to create a barrier between consumers and staff and have placed hand sanitizer stations by the front doors. Staff is frequently disinfecting surfaces and is encouraging social distancing of at least six feet. Signage reminding customers to engage in social distancing and of the County health order requiring residents to wear facemasks while shopping have been posted in each store as well. Staff are also limiting the number of people who can shop at one time to ensure distancing can be maintained.

ABS is the alcohol wholesaler of beer, wine and spirits for Montgomery County. ABS operates 25 beer, wine and spirits stores and one spirits only store in Poolesville. It manages alcohol licensing, enforcement and education for more than 1,000 businesses. Generating more than $35 million in net income annually, ABS profits are used to pay down County debt with a large portion deposited in the County general fund to pay for resident services that would otherwise be funded by County tax dollars.

For information about ABS, including store hours and locations visit the website and follow ABS on Facebook and Twitter.

For the latest COVID-19 updates, visit the County’s COVID-19 data dashboard.

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Release ID: 20-667
Media Contact: Melissa Davis 240-660-1224