New York bars, restaurants can remain open until midnight beginning Monday
April 14, 2021 3:49 PM
ALBANY – Restaurants and bars across New York will soon be able to remain open an hour later as the state moves to slightly ease a curfew that has been in place for months.
On Monday, bars and restaurants will be allowed to continue service until midnight, back from the current 11 p.m.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo made the announcement Wednesday in what is the latest move to relax COVID-era restrictions on businesses.
For weeks, restaurant and bar owners have been urging Cuomo to lift the curfew, pointing to an increasing number of New Yorkers who have received a coronavirus vaccination.
The owners have also been pushing Cuomo to rescind a separate requirement that patrons purchase food with the purchase of an alcoholic beverage. On that point, Cuomo didn’t budget: The food requirement remains in place.
Cuomo first put a 10 p.m. curfew for sit-down service at bars and restaurants into place in November at a time when the state was staring down a second wave of the coronavirus.
He later extended it to 11 p.m. amid pleas from restaurant owners who said it unfairly harmed their business.
At various points, restaurant and bar owners challenged the curfew in court, with several dozen western New York restaurants temporarily getting the green light to open at regular hours before it was later rescinded.
Now, all restaurants and bars will be able to remain open until midnight beginning Monday.
On Wednesday, Cuomo also announced the state will allow horse- and auto-racing events to allow spectators at up to 20% capacity beginning Aug. 23.
The change will allow for fans to attend races at Belmont Park on Long Island, which is home to the famed Belmont Stakes. It also opens the door for fans at the Saratoga Race Track season later in the year.