August 4, 2022

Buffalo restaurant owners urge state legislature to make take-out alcohol permanent

Governor Hochul has proposed making take-out liquor sales permanent after they ended last summer.

BUFFALO, NY — Buffalo restaurant owners have joined other restaurateurs in supporting the sustainability of alcohol-to-go.

On Wednesday, the New York State Restaurant Association, along with local and statewide restaurant leaders, held a press conference to urge the state legislature to support Gov. Kathy Hochul’s proposal to make sales permanent. alcohol to take away.

“Now is the time to act, and the state legislature must follow suit. Governor Hochul’s proposal clearly demonstrates the Executive Chamber’s commitment to supporting the economic recovery of the restaurant industry. New Yorkers overwhelmingly support this policy, and it is incumbent on the legislature to support restaurants that have faced unprecedented economic hardship since the pandemic began,” said Melissa Fleischut, president and CEO of the New York. York State Restaurant Association.

Calls to make the sales permanent came during the budget subcommittee hearing on economic development. According to the New York State Restaurant Association, restaurants want to keep takeout sales going because they provide an additional revenue stream and are popular statewide.

The sale of takeout alcohol ended when the state of emergency ended in New York in June 2021.

“Of all the challenges we are currently facing and have had to deal with during the pandemic, there were a few silver linings. Takeout alcohol was one. But restaurants invested in making it work, and it disappeared overnight, despite pleas from industry and consumers. Lawmakers have the power to make this permanent and allow our alcohol-to-go programs to thrive again. I urge the Legislature to listen to New Yorkers, restaurant owners and our own Governor Hochul and bring back carryout alcohol for good,” said Nick Pitillo, owner of Osteria 166 in Buffalo.

Some local representatives also expressed their support.

“New York continues to identify ways to help small businesses build back better after the pandemic, and Governor Hochul’s proposal to make take-out liquor a permanent option is one of many tangible ways to support small businesses. restaurants and craft producers across the state,” the senator said. said Tim Kennedy.