Recently, New York City said it will lift the ban for restaurants to operate indoor dining in the city. However, it comes with a limited 25 percent capacity. Now, a new local mandate could help operators to see a profit even with the limited capacity. Last week, the city council gave a thumbs up to a law that could allow restaurants to charge more.
Among the businesses struggling in the pandemic include those of indoor dining restaurants. Business Insider cited a Yelp stat saying that the health crisis forced more than 9,000 restaurants to close since March. It comes as governments imposed lockdowns and restrictions, including the ban of indoor dining, to curb the spread of COVID-19.
Meanwhile, a previous survey found out that more than half of the restaurant owners reckoned they could close without financial relief. And then earlier this month, New York City said it will allow indoor dining starting September 30. However, the city limited the capacity to 25 percent only, and they should close by midnight. On top of that, operators also have to abide by safety protocols, including enhancing ventilation and air filtration.
Helping Out the Restos
Furthermore, several experts noted that the limited capacity might not suffice to cover the establishments’ operations.
So, the New York City Council on Wednesday last week passed a law intended to help out restaurants. But the new mandate would involve the customers. While Mayor Bill de Blasio is yet to sign, according to several reports, but he said he intended to support it.
The New York City Council passed a bill on Wednesday 46-2 that would allow restaurants to charge as much as 10% on customers dining indoors or outdoors to help cover Covid-19 expenses. https://t.co/cfkSEBqWcZ
— CNN Business (@CNNBusiness) September 19, 2020
The ‘Recovery Charge’
With the new “COVID-19 Recovery Charge,” restaurants can add up to 10 percent to the customer’s total bill. The surcharge can actually help cover the expenses of operators amid a limited number of diners. Also, restaurants have to disclose to customers the additional charge.
Once implemented, the “Recovery Charge” bill would be effective until 90 days after the city allowed full capacity again.
But the new mandate will not cover all restaurants. Establishments with large chains of over 15 locations or with take-out orders are not included, per Business Insider.