On Saturday, January 23rd, the New York State Restaurant Association made a statement demanding that the state relax restrictions on restaurants. In a nutshell, they’re calling for an extension of the 10pm outdoor dining curfew and the return of indoor dining in NYC. If you’re imagining a scenario akin to the Real Housewives Of New York State Bureaucracy, you’re not far off.
NYSRA’s demands for reopening indoor dining in NYC come right as cities like Philadelphia and Chicago have announced they’re resuming their indoor dining service. As of now, indoor dining is allowed at a 50% capacity in any Orange Zone region except for New York City. Yes, there are lawsuits.
NYSRA calls on New York to follow other states’ lead and loosen restrictions on restaurants. Changes to restrictions will stimulate much needed business to struggling industry statewide. Read full press release here: https://t.co/LM6hDXzGzb pic.twitter.com/GZiWHZQd3L— NYS Restaurant Assoc (@NYSRA) January 23, 2021
The NYSRA is also pushing to change the city’s outdoor dining curfew from 10pm to 12am. In their statement, they explain this would avoid having to rush customers out by 9pm in order to fully shut down by 10pm.
On Monday, January 25th, Governor Cuomo said he would not consider reopening indoor dining in New York City. Mayor de Blasio echoed this sentiment in a press conference on Tuesday, January 26th. “I would love to see [restaurants] come back fully...but right now the central focus is health and safety. At this moment we have way too many cases.”
In response to the state’s position on keeping indoor service closed, the New York City Hospitality Alliance (another organization working on behalf of the state’s restaurants) said, “Governor Cuomo’s never-ending restrictions keeping indoor dining closed at New York City restaurants, while keeping it open around the rest of the state where infection and hospitalization rates are higher than in New York City is discriminatory and is destroying the livelihoods of small business owners and workers.” They also mentioned filing additional legal actions against the state.
We’ll continue to update you on how Real Housewives Of New York State Bureaucracy plays out. If you’re feeling fired up (as we are), you can contact Cuomo here and check out the work that the Independent Restaurant Coalition is doing to advocate for restaurant funding on a national level.