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In another important step towards achieving a ‘new normalcy,’ from next week New York City’s restaurants will be allowed to welcome customers at 75% capacity. From May 7 the city’s eateries will be at the same level as the rest of the state, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced yesterday (Friday).

“There’s no doubt that restaurants have been among the pandemic’s hardest hit businesses, and New York City’s thriving restaurant industry has found it challenging to keep staff and maintain profits,” said Cuomo. “We’re easing restrictions on restaurants, personal care services and gyms to put more money in the pockets of small business owners and working people in New York City, which was hit so hard by the pandemic but, I have no doubt, will come back stronger than ever.”

It’s a move that could prove a lifeline to an industry that has struggled throughout the pandemic. NYC Hospitality Alliance Executive Director Andrew Rigie said, “New York City’s hospitality industry has been decimated by the pandemic, and while there is still a long road to recovery, today’s news that indoor dining occupancy will increase to 75 percent in the five boroughs provides a shot of optimism to small business owners and workers who have been financially devastated over the past year.”

The city’s gyms and fitness centers will be able to expand to 50 percent capacity beginning May 15, with hair salons, barber shops and other personal care services given the green light to move to 75 percent capacity on May 7.

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