10am Brunch Bill & 200 Foot Rule

By NYC Hospitality Alliance

June 23, 2016

The NYC Hospitality Alliance has been advocating with the greater business community to amend the post-prohibiton era blue law that prohibits restaurants in New York from serving alcohol before 12:00pm on Sundays.

As reported, the state legislature passed legislation that allows Sunday alcohol service to begin at 10:00am on Sundays, instead of noon. The bill has been sent to Governor Cuomo to sign into law, which he is expected to do. The Alliance will let you know when this happens and when the law takes effect. 

The NYC Hospitality Alliance thanks the Governor, Legislature and State Liquor Authority for supporting this sensible hospitality industry reform!

As way of background, earlier this year we informed you that The Alliance's counsel Rob Bookman was appointed to Governor Cuomo's NYS Liquor Authority Working Group, which was tasked with reviewing the alcoholic beverage law and recommending reforms. One of the recommendations made by the Working Group was to allow licensed establishments, such as restaurants to begin serving alcohol before noon on Sundays. This would allow brunch-loving New Yorkers, visitors and tourists to enjoy a mimosa or Bloody Mary at a restaurant with their Sunday brunch. It would have the added benefit of generating additional revenue for businesses during a time when most other operating costs are skyrocketing. The reform would also align nicely with a change in the law The Alliance successfully advocated for that allows NYC restaurants to begin operating their sidewalk cafes on Sundays at 10:00am, instead of the prior start time of noon.

Unfortunately, another blue law reform could not be agreed upon at this time. The Alliance and Working Group also sought to amend the antiquated 200 Foot Rule that prohibits a restaurant from obtaining a full liquor license within 200 feet of a place of worship or school. In NYC, where many commercial spaces fall within 200 feet of such locations, high quality restaurants do not open because their concept and financial model requires a full liquor license. We will continue to advocate for this sensible reform that is desired by restaurant lovers, small business owners and those supportive of local economic development. We hope to achieve the reform in the future.

Questions or comments? Please contact The Alliance at or 212-582-2506.

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