If you thought restaurateurs were unhappy about New York’s 10 p.m. dining curfew, you should see their customers.
Big Apple eatery owners say revenues dropped by roughly 30 percent over the weekend as they were forced to comply with the governor’s latest efforts to rein in rising coronavirus cases.
Adding to their misery — they’ve been turned into bouncers who are forced to kick customers out at 10 p.m. on the dot or risk onerous $10,000 fines. It’s been challenging, they say, to have to remind New Yorkers that the city that never sleeps now winds down just as the 10 o’clock news is getting started.
“It’s not easy to get people to leave,” said Erin Bellard, owner of e’s BAR on the Upper West Side. “We tell them they have to leave by 10 p.m. but it’s definitely awkward. There’s always a couple of people who push back. We try to be hospitable but it’s like we are herding people out — we just can’t risk a $10,000 fine. We are struggling to stay afloat.”