Brings New York City in Line With 75% Capacity Limit Elsewhere in New York State
New York City Gyms and Fitness Centers Will Expand to 50% Capacity Beginning May 15
Hair Salons, Barber Shops and Other Personal Care Services Will Expand to 75% Capacity Beginning May 7
Executive Order Establishing Micro-Cluster Zone Strategy to Be Rescinded in Light of State's Progress Battling COVID-19 Pandemic
Patrons and Businesses Must Continue to Follow State Health Guidance
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that New York City indoor dining will expand to 75 percent capacity beginning Friday, May 7. This brings New York City in line with the rest of New York State. The Governor also announced that hair salons, barber shops and other personal care services will expand to 75 percent capacity beginning May 7. New York City gyms and fitness centers will expand to 50 percent capacity beginning May 15. All changes are subject to state public health guidance including social distancing and masks.
The Governor also announced that he will rescind the Executive Order establishing the micro-cluster zone strategy in light of New York State's progress against the COVID-19 pandemic. Applicable state public health guidance must still be followed for all industries.
"After a long and incredibly difficult fight, New York State is winning the war against COVID-19, and that means it's time to loosen some restrictions put in place to protect the public health and help our local businesses," Governor Cuomo said. "There's no doubt that restaurants have been among the pandemic's hardest hit businesses, and New York City's thriving restaurant industry has found it challenging to keep staff and maintain profits. We're easing restrictions on restaurants, personal care services and gyms to put more money in the pockets of small business owners and working people in New York City, which was hit so hard by the pandemic but, I have no doubt, will come back stronger than ever."
This announcement builds on the Governor's recent measures to further re-open the economy amid a steady decline in New York's COVID-19 positivity and hospitalization rates. On April 28, Governor Cuomo announced that the 12 a.m. food and beverage service curfew will be lifted for outdoor dining areas beginning May 17 and for indoor dining areas beginning May 31. The Governor also announced that the 1 a.m. curfew for catered events where attendees have provided proof of vaccination status or a recent negative COVID-19 test result will be lifted beginning May 17, with the curfew for all catered events set to be lifted May 31.
NYC Hospitality Alliance Executive Director Andrew Rigie said, "New York City's hospitality industry has been decimated by the pandemic, and while there is still a long road to recovery, Governor Cuomo's announcement earlier this week on easing restaurant and bar restrictions, along with today's news that indoor dining occupancy will increase to 75% in the five boroughs provides a shot of optimism to small business owners and workers who have been financially devastated over the past year. We look forward to working with Governor Cuomo's administration to safely reopen New York City, so we can get the restaurant capital of the world cooking again."
Greater New York Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Mark Jaffe said, "On behalf of the 30,000 plus business & civic leaders we work with; the Chamber wants to applaud the Governor's vaccination distribution and precautionary actions that will allow us to once again enjoy the vibrancy & culture that the restaurant industry provides to all who visit, work & live in NY. No doubts our economic health suffered with the loss of indoor dining, but so did our mental health as we lost the sense of community we feel when enjoying meals & face to face networking with our co-workers & loved ones. Now, with the Governor's actions, we can once again "safely" enjoy the atmosphere of the many restaurants that make NY great!"
NYS Latino Restaurant, Bar & Lounge Association President Jeffrey Garcia said, "Bars and restaurants took a huge hit last year, doing what needed to be done to keep New Yorkers safe from the raging pandemic. By making the vaccine easily accessible to everyone and taking COVID precautions seriously, Governor Cuomo put us on the fast track to recovery. Now, with the expansion of capacity, restaurants and bars are closer to being able to do what they do best: serve the communities in which they are anchored."
Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation President Marlene Cintron said, "New York City and the Bronx are recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic and getting ready to rebuild the economy and provide more jobs for working people. Governor Cuomo's announcement expanding New York City indoor dining and loosening other public health restrictions is a step in the right direction as the numbers go down and vaccinations go up. These new measures will help restaurant workers provide for themselves and their families throughout the city and help small business owners maintain their livelihoods."
Korean American Nail Salon Association of New York President Sangho Lee said, "Nail salons throughout New York City have been hit hard by public health restrictions, and today's announcement brings us a step forward to ensuring owners and staff can support themselves and their families. I thank Governor Cuomo for taking action to support nail salons and other businesses throughout the state as we recover from this terrible pandemic. New York is moving forward and reopening the economy in conjunction with the science and the data, and we're going to build a stronger city than ever before."
Chinese Nail Salon Association of East America President Peter Yu said, "New York businesses have been hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, and the announcement that will allow nail salons to expand to 75 percent capacity is a welcome respite during a difficult time. Nail salon workers depend on local businesses for income and stability, and this will make it easier for them to support themselves throughout the state. I thank Governor Cuomo for his leadership reopening New York based on the science and look forward to seeing this new expansion take effect."
Manhattan Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Jessica Walker said, "COVID-19 has had adverse economic impacts on New York's businesses and families, but we're making progress fighting the pandemic and getting our economy back on track. I welcome today's announcement loosening pandemic restrictions on a range of industries and thank Governor Cuomo for his leadership following the science and data while protecting the economy. This will help small businesses, workers and families in Manhattan and I applaud the state for taking action to move us forward."
Bronx Chamber of Commerce President Lisa Sorin said, "Restaurants and personal care services are often small businesses that support hardworking New Yorkers across the state, and Governor Cuomo's announcement that indoor dining capacity will be expanded to 75 percent in New York City is a welcome new measure. We need to reopen and rebuild our economy as the data and the science improves in our favor, and these new announcements will help New Yorkers get back on their feet after an incredibly tough year. I thank the Governor for his leadership reopening our state and helping New Yorkers to recover economically from this terrible pandemic."
Staten Island Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Linda Baran said, "The Chamber is encouraged by the announcement of the Governor today to further expand capacity for businesses that have truly taken a hit over the last year. Increased capacity will allow for more customers, and in turn, more revenue. As the number of people vaccinated increases, coupled with a focus on fully reopening businesses, we are finally starting to see a path forward. Now more than ever, we need to have the backs of our small businesses so that they can sustain operations and grow."
South Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation President & CEO Lourdes Zapata said, "While many New Yorkers hunkered down at home during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, essential workers in food service put their lives on the line to make sure their communities were cared for. We are thankful for their service and excited that it is safe to begin supporting restaurants in person at a higher capacity. Thank you, Governor Cuomo, for your continued work in rebuilding our economy and protecting the workers that protected us for the last year."
Long Island City Partnership President Elizabeth Lusskin said, "Thanks to the hard work of New Yorkers in following health guidelines and getting vaccinated, this welcome expansion of capacities can now keep even more New Yorkers working. Virtually every type of business helped by these new guidelines is operating in Long Island City - the mixed-use capital of NYS - and we are so grateful to the Governor, and our fellow New Yorkers, for making this possible."
Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Randy Peers said, "Brooklyn's restaurant industry has been severely impacted by COVID-19, and Governor Cuomo's announcements to reduce business restrictions, modify curfew hours, and increase indoor dining occupancy will significantly help our vital small businesses and workers begin a path to recovery. We look forward to working with Governor Cuomo's administration on getting New York City back to business."
Queens Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Thomas J. Grech said, "We are grateful that additional small businesses will be allowed to open for longer periods of time. It is gratifying to see this as we approach late spring and early summer when so many restaurants increase their business."
Greater Jamaica Development Corporation President and CEO Hope Knight said, “We are all dealing with a pandemic that we have never experienced before, and everyone has been handling it day-to-day with practices that have been extremely trying. The impact on small businesses has been devastating, to say the least. Now it appears that the light at the end of the tunnel is closer and brighter. We support the Cuomo Administration’s move to increase capacity at restaurants and other service establishments and the boost it will provide these businesses and their employees."
Flushing Chinese Business Association Executive Director Peter Tu said, "New York City's businesses have been hard hit by the coronavirus pandemic, but with a decrease in the numbers we're beginning to move the economy forward into the post-pandemic future. This announcement making pandemic restrictions less stringent for businesses will help workers recover and support themselves. I am sure of Governor Cuomo's decision and his leadership safety reopening."