Portsmouth Develops Special Application for New Outdoor Dining Licenses

PORTSMOUTH, R.I. — The town of Portsmouth has developed a special application process for allowing temporary outdoor dining for establishments currently without a license.

For food establishments currently licensed by the town, those licenses will continue through Oct. 15, 2020.

The specific guidelines and application process have been issued in an Executive Order signed on May 14 by the president of the Town Council.

Restaurants may apply for the temporary expansion of their food service areas to permit the service and consumption of food in outdoor portions of the licensed premises on or after May 18, 2020. Restaurants with a current liquor license may also apply for temporary expansion of their liquor services area.

Applications for food service expansion may be administratively approved by the Town Clerk. Liquor expansion applications must be approved by the Town Council pursuant to RIGL § 3-5-17.

Applications may be obtained from the Town Clerk’s office via email at, by calling 401-683-2101, or downloaded from the Town Web site by clicking here and may be filed via email.

All applicable filing and inspection fees associated (except tent permits) with such applications shall be waived.

For those establishments with current liquor licenses, applications will require Town Council approval.

In anticipation of a special Town Council meeting, those applications should be submitted no later than noon on Monday, May 18, to be considered at that meeting.

Questions and comments? Contact the Portsmouth Town Clerk at (401-683-2101 or

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