New York lifts indoor dining curfew for bars and restaurants

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NEW YORK — Bars and restaurants no longer have to close at midnight across New York as the state’s indoor dining curfew ends Monday.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced last month that the restriction would be lifted. The outdoor dining curfew ended on May 17 and capacity limits were lifted on May 19.

With the indoor curfew lifted, establishments can return to the closing times that their liquor licenses or other regulations allow. 

Restaurateurs have been looking forward to the possibility of later hours as they try to recover from the financial devastation wrought by more than a year of blanket shutdowns and reopening restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The end of the indoor dining curfew, along with many other loosened or lifted restrictions in recent weeks, arrived as the state continued to report a seven-day average COVID positivity rate below 1%.

On Monday, the state Health Department reported 494 new cases out of 71,242 tests reported on Sunday — a one-day positivity rate of 0.69%. The seven-day positivity rate dropped to 0.67%.

On the vaccination front, over 53% of all New Yorkers have received at least one dose of a COVID vaccine and more than 45% were fully vaccinated as of Monday.

“Like every other milestone of our reopening, the end of curfew for indoor dining is the result of New Yorkers banding together, practicing safety precautions and getting vaccinated, so we can defeat the virus and work our way towards a new normal,” Cuomo said Monday in a statement. “Our reopening approach has always been data-based and if we want to stay on our current trajectory, we need to remain vigilant across the board – especially when it comes to indoor activities. As always, we will continue to work with our local partners to make sure venues are following basic safety guidelines.”

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