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To-go alcohol expires at midnight: Local beverage manufacturers, distributers disappointed

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CAPITAL REGION, N.Y. (NEWS10) – More than 400 days after Governor Cuomo issued a state of emergency, that emergency, is now ending in New York State. Many New Yorkers are relieved, some say it has been long overdue.

“Overall, it’s a great sign that we are heading toward the end of this pandemic and that we’re getting back to our regular lives. Some cons are just that we’re just a little uncertain right now right now on what’s going to happen with some of these executive orders that are ending,” says Leslie Silva, partner with Tully Rinckey PLLC.

Alcohol-to-go will soon be a thing of the past. The order will expire on Friday, June 25th at midnight. When take-out was the only option, this executive order has been a lifeline for local beverage manufacturers, distributers, and for bar and restaurant owners.

The ‘To-Go’ Alcohol executive order allowed customers to place a takeout cocktail with their dinner orders. For distillers, The executive order has been extended almost monthly during the pandemic. “For our business, this was very much a big deal and it allowed me to keep my business alive,” says Matthew Jager, part owner of Yankee Distillers.

“The Legislature failed to codify the ability of restaurants to offer alcohol to-go. With the state’s declaration of emergency expiring on Thursday, all temporary pandemic-related suspensions, and directives, including privileges allowing bars, restaurants, and manufacturers to sell drinks to go, will end after June 24th.”


Assemblymember Patricia Fahy has been sponsoring a bill that would extend the current executive order for two years, instead of extending it monthly. The bill wasn’t passed before session came to a close.

“…Not only were the alcohol-to-go provisions highly popular, with 78% of New Yorkers in support of a permanent extension, but the ability to serve patrons ‘alcohol-to-go’ served as an important financial lifeline for primarily small, locally-owned restaurants struggling with the disproportionate impact the hospitality sector has continued to experience throughout the pandemic.”


“If the Legislature should be called back to Albany for a special session, I will be expecting a one-year extension of alcohol to-go to be on the list of important issues that the Legislature should act on. The proposal is straightforward in regard to conditions, limits, and time frame and will not negatively impact other industries.”


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