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Restaurant industry asks for outdoor seating in next phase of reopening in NYS

Restaurant owners across the state are asking Governor Andrew Cuomo to allow outdoor dining, as part of the next phase of reopening.

At the moment, Cuomo hasn’t indicated whether this could be a possibility.

“We found that consumer confidence is stronger to dine in outdoor areas than indoor dining in restaurants right now,” said Melissa Fleischut, CEO and president of the New York State Restaurant Association.

Multiple states have already begun allowing outdoor dining. It’s a step that the association would like to see happen.

“We just think that if we could just have some outdoor seating space as well that that’s going to help build our ability to service our guests and get them back into the restaurant in numbers that makes sense for the business,” said Fleischut. “Not only utilizing their existing patio space or their parking lots or their sidewalks, but we are talking to the local governments who want to expand that so that maybe a street could be shut down or maybe you can utilize more of the sidewalk and turn a parking lane into a pedestrian walkway.”