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Businesses adjust to non-conformity in enforcement of mask mandate

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CAPITAL REGION, NY (WRGB) — Patrick Noonan is the owner of el loco Mexican Cafe in Albany. With a new mandate taking effect this week by Governor Hochul, he can either require masks or proof of vaccination for customers to enter. He chose masks. But it’s still a burden on his staff to balance hospitality and enforcing mask

“We had a hard enough time finding employees and now I’m asking some of these newer employees young people especially that are not comfortable doing that and now I don’t want to risk losing more employees,” Noonan said.

It’s not the same policy at Savoy Taproom down the street. They’re requiring proof of vaccination. They said in a Facebook post that they believe this is the best way to comply with the mandate. This comes as Saratoga Rensselaer and Washington county say they wither won’t enforce the mandate or don’t have the manpower to do so.

“We’re well aware folks may be going to Troy, Clifton Park, Saratoga, to be more comfortable in a venue” Noonan said.
Ryan McCall is an attorney with the Tully Rinckey law firm. He says that businesses have the right to deny service to whoever they like, since customers are guests. It can get tricky, however, when it comes to a potential Confrontation with someone who won’t follow the rules.

“At that point what I would recommend to any business that’s concerned about a state official coming in and potentially seeing it and fining the business, I would recommend they call the police and then they would be trespassing onto the property and they’re an unwelcome guest at that point.”

Businesses can be fined up to $1,000 for violating this mandate, and if they have a state issued license, that could cause even more penalties by the state

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