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Alcohol for Take Out and Delivery Ends Today as More COVID Restrictions Are Lifted

Photo by Sagar Chaudhray on Unsplash

June 24, 2021 By Ryan Songalia

A temporary provision allowing alcoholic beverages for takeout and delivery will end on Thursday.

The announcement was made Wednesday, and comes in conjunction with the lifting of New York’s COVID-19 emergency order.

“Licensees please be advised that with the ending of our state of emergency and the return to pre-pandemic guidelines, the temporary pandemic-related privileges for to-go and delivery of alcoholic beverages will end after June 24,” tweeted the New York State Liquor Authority.

The measure helped sustain bars and restaurants after they were ordered closed for in-person patronage on March 16, 2020. With bars and restaurants being allowed open at full capacity as of May 19, it has become less vital to the survival of bars.

Both the New York State Senate and Assembly had introduced bills that would extend to-go cocktails for at least another year, but neither legislative body had brought them to a vote before the end of the legislative session on June 10.

Still, restaurant advocates are hoping that state legislators can revive the provision on a permanent basis. Currently, 15 states have passed such bills, according to the New York Times.

“We know the sudden elimination of alcohol to-go will hurt many restaurants and bars that have come to rely on this new revenue stream, and it will be a disappointment for customers who have come to love the popular policy,” said the NYC Hospitality Alliance in an online statement.

The Alliance added that the bill which would have extended alcohol to-go was not voted on because “it was the subject of a massive opposition campaign by New York’s package and liquor store associations and elected officials.” They say they will advocate for its return in the next legislative session.

Beer in to-go containers is still legal, as it had been prior to the pandemic.

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