In a press conference on September 8, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said that although the city is moving to open schools for the fall semester, indoor dining will have to wait until the city is able to get help from “local officials to enforce compliance.”
“I’m very aware of the economic pain that restaurant closing is causing,” said Cuomo.
New York City’s restaurants are still not allowed to serve indoor diners and the restriction includes hotel restaurants, bars and dining options.
Cuomo said in the press conference that restaurants in other parts of the state had outbreaks of COVID-19 when they opened to indoor dining which makes city restaurant openings problematic.
He also said that he needed help from local health and police services to monitor compliance in city eateries if they are to open indoor dining for reduced capacity patrons.
“This is not without risk,” Cuomo said.
A recent study by the New York State Restaurant Association said that if the closures persist, 60 percent of restaurants in the state could be out of business by 2021.
Also during the press conference, Cuomo criticized President Donald Trump for withholding federal funds that would go to a $2 billion La Guardia rail link, part of the governor’s signature airport improvement project. Cuomo claimed Trump was holding up federal funds to study the environmental impact of the La Guardia Link.
The link is not without its own critics from both sides of the aisle, including Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) who has stated that she prefers increased infrastructure to existing subway and bus services along with other potential solutions such as ferry service.