New York City Mayor Eric Adams speaks during a news conference at City Hall on Sunday, April 24, 2022 in New York, N.Y.

NEWS: NYC bill would nix extra tax to help eateries recover COVID

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City officials want to temporarily nix an extra city tax incurred by bars and restaurants in a move aimed at helping the hard-hit industry in its ongoing COVID-19 recovery.

The potential relief is included in a new City Council bill introduced Thursday by Democratic Majority Leader Keith Powers that would suspend an annual 25 percent city surcharge eateries pay for their liquor licenses.

“I am the son of a restaurant owner in the city who has seen firsthand how much every dollar counts when it comes to keeping your business afloat — and I’ve watched, over the last two-plus years, this entire industry struggle to stay afloat in the city,” Powers told The Post in a phone interview.

“Bars and restaurants are vital to our city’s economy and we should be doing everything we can right now.” 

The bill has the backing of Mayor Eric Adams.

Adams’ 240-executive budget book includes the measure “as part of the blueprint for New York City’s economic recovery,” estimating it would cost the Big Apple $6 million in revenue from his record-breaking $99.7 billion 2023 city budget proposal if approved.

Mayor Eric Adams, who has focused on revitalizing New York City’s tourism, backs the City Council legislation.
James Keivom

The city’s hospitality sector suffered massive job loss at the start of the pandemic, thanks to coronavirus-related shutdowns and a slow reopening strategy to keep the virus from spreading. 

The restaurant industry now employs 54,000 fewer workers now compared to Feb. 2020, according to state data.

Adams’ recovery plan is also focused on bringing workers back into the office, and revitalizing the city’s tourism and nightlife sectors.

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