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Cuomo is increasing capacity at New York casinos, just don't ask for a drink after midnight

Date posted: April 26, 2021, 08: 08 at

Last updated: April 26, 2021, 08:08 h.

Steve Bittenbender

For the second consecutive month, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo eased the COVID restriction - 19 state gaming venues. On Monday, it announced that state casinos and racinos could accept visitors with a capacity of up to 50 percent.

New York casinos
Patrons walk around the pre-pandemic Resorts World New York Casino. On Monday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that the casinos will be allowed to operate with up to 50 bandwidth from May 19th (Image: Behind the Scenes NYC / Resorts World NYC)

The measure enters into force on May 19.

Last month the governor lifted the 11 curfew in casinos. This allowed them to resume their normal working hours from April 5.

The state reported some of the lowest total COVID values in months on Monday. Seven-day average of positivity is 2.13 percent, lowest since November 8 and 3,174 inpatients being the lowest number in the state since November

.

"We are making great strides in the fight against COVID - 19," said Cuomo. “Our immunization rates are rising and our positivity and hospitalization rates are falling, so now we're going to open the valves of our economy even more… This is all great news, but we're not out of the woods yet. Washing hands, wearing masks and maintaining social distancing are key tools that each of us can use to slow the spread as we continue our efforts to defeat COVID once and for all. "

Bars and restaurants in New York City are still closed

Not all dining options are treated the same in New York City. While casinos and large outdoor venues can increase capacity, large outdoor venues will be available 20 percent to 33 percent by May 19 - restaurants in the state are subject to tougher restrictions.

In New York City, the number of restaurants and bars is limited to 50 percent of capacity for indoor meals. In addition to the Big Apple, establishments can offer indoor meals with 75 percent capacity.

However, there is a curfew in bars and restaurants. Last week, Cuomo extended it to midnight.

Melissa Fleischut, president and CEO of the New York State Restaurant Association, said in a statement that the curfew is not based on facts. It added that it was "confusing and irresponsible" to believe suggestions that the hospitality industry is responsible for any of the 41 COVID deaths the state reported on Sunday.

We haven't seen data yet to prove that the restaurant remains open later at night is more risky than the afternoon, she said. “It's time to remove these arbitrary restrictions. Let's create a plan that details a full reopening for our industry. Most other states already have it. "

In the case of casinos, this means that people can play on the dance floor all night long, they won't be able to get a bite to eat or a drink while playing blackjack or slots all night long.

There has been a curfew in bars and restaurants since last November, when Cuomo tried to mitigate the effects of the rise in the number of holidays.

Companies violating the curfew face a fine of up to $ 10,000 and a possible loss of license.

NYRA tracks hold for the time being for fans

Earlier this month, Cuomo also announced that the state racecourses would be able to welcome fans back to the track. On April 14, it announced that songs could greet fans at 20 percent capacity. He also determined that the order coincided with the start of the Belmont Park Spring Meeting last Thursday.

However, the New York Racing Association (NYRA) has held it on hold for the time being after state officials have provided specific reopening protocols.

NYRA President and CEO Dave O'Rourke said last week that track officials are looking forward to the return of fans to the Belmont and Saratoga circuit later this summer.

"NYRA is committed to providing the safest possible environment for fans and will make all necessary adjustments so that the Northwell Health vaccination center in Belmont can continue to serve as many New Yorkers as possible," O'Rourke added.

Races will resume on Thursday at the Long Island circuit located across the Cross Island Parkway from Queens. However, it will still continue with no fans lined up along the track or in front of the betting windows.

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