A metro-east barbecue restaurant will close at the end of this month.
Mike Mills, who earned honors from a number of barbecuing competitions, opened 17th Street BBQ at 1711 W. U.S. Highway 50 in March 2007.
On Thursday, he announced that he will close his doors after business on Nov. 30.
Mills leased the building and said that he will try to help his 50 employees at the O'Fallon restaurant find work at his other restaurants in Marion and his hometown Murphysboro, which both will remain open.
"The restaurant was not doing what it needed to do, business wise," Mills said. "At the same time, due to the economy and just the different rules and regulations you have to operate under, I need to cut back."
Mills said that changes from the new health care law, the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, is "not helping the business climate at all.
"With the government rules and regulations, it's pretty tough for a small business to make it, or any business to make it," he said.
He also said that he is grateful for the customers who supported his restaurant for the past seven years. He plans to continue to sell his barbecue sauce in the metro-east and provide catering in the metro-east from his other restaurants. He also is continuing business at his two Memphis Championship Barbecue restaurants in Las Vegas.
Contact reporter Will Buss at email@example.com or 618-239-2526.