Hudson Valley restaurant owners lobby lawmakers to make alcohol to go permanent
Hudson Valley restaurant owners are joining forces with businesses across the state and calling on lawmakers in Albany to make alcohol to go permanent.
Alcohol to go was a source of much-needed revenue as businesess struggled to stay afloat during the height of the pandemic.
"Alcohol, wine, beer, cocktails represent at least 25% to 35% of our revenue - and that was taken away from us," says restaurant owner Sergio Brases.
Under New York's state of emergency during the COVID pandemic, restaurants and bars were given a lifeline and allowed to sell the beverages to go.
It was popular with patrons, and now restaurant owners in the Hudson Valley and across the state are lobbying lawmakers to support a proposal by Gov. Kathy Hochul to make it permanent.
Mothers Against Drunk Driving weighed in on the issue, saying in part: "MADD is not opposed to curbside and to-go alcohol sales; our concern is that open container laws and minimum 21 drinking age laws are followed."
As legislators debate the budget in Albany, restaurant owners are hopeful they will hear their plea and make it a permanent policy. If it doesn't happen this year, they vow to keep fighting until it becomes law.