Reopen NYC: City Council approves 10% dining surcharge to help restaurants amid pandemic

NEW YORK (WABC) -- The New York City Council approved a bill Wednesday allowing food service establishments to charge a COVID-19 recovery surcharge to help eateries struggling during the coronavirus pandemic.

The "COVID-19 Recovery Charge" will temporarily allow restaurants to add a charge of up to 10% of a customer's total bill.

Many restaurants have struggled since the onset of COVID-19 and the associated in-person dining restrictions went into effect, forcing some out of business with many others barely surviving.

Related: New York City to reopen indoor dining by end of month at 25% capacity, Cuomo says

Current rules prohibit restaurants from charging any fees other than the listed price of food and drink, even if such surcharge is clearly disclosed.

Once enacted, the menu and bill would need to clearly disclose the surcharge.

Related: Is opening indoor dining at 25% enough for NYC restaurants?

It will be permitted until 90 days after full indoor dining is once again permitted.



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The sense of doom grew, especially after March 1, when the first confirmed case arrived in Manhattan. Soon, there was a hotspot in New Rochelle, and small curfews and containment zones across the area offered a hint of a frightening future we still thought we could avoid.



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