Customers with take-out orders at restaurants in New York state will continue to be able to order alcohol under an extension approved Thursday by Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
The order extends the alcohol-to-go provisions until June 5, a measure put in place last year as businesses, schools and other public gathering areas were shut down to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Restaurants were allowed to continue take-out orders during that time before being able to reopen with limited seating.
The order comes as the state is moving toward a broader reopening on May 19 that will ease pandemic guidelines in a variety of areas as the rate of new positive cases plummets and more people are vaccinated.
But restaurants have struggled during the public health crisis, and allowing alcohol with take-out orders was seen as a vital lifeline for many business owners who shed employees and revenue. Restaurant associations have urged a full adoption of the to-go provision in state law, which the Legislature is yet to take up.
Meanwhile, Cuomo's orders also included modifications to dining service capacities that are in line with the recently announced changes. The order also extended payments on property taxes without interest or penalties for certain localities.
State lawmakers earlier this year approved a law requiring Cuomo to actively extend orders by 30 days, a move meant to scale back his emergency powers during the pandemic.