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City Council Passes Bills Relieving NYC Restaurants of ‘Burdensome’ Fines

Plus, Danny Meyer’s Daily Provisions plans to add two locations this summer — and more intel

Customers dining outside Melba’s, under orange awnings
Melba’s is a favorite neighborhood restaurant in Harlem
Gary He/Eater

City Council passes bills to grant NYC restaurants relief from certain fines and penalties

A pair of bills, sponsored by Bronx council members Mark Gjonaj and Vanessa Gibson, granting NYC restaurants some reprieve from fines and penalties imposed during the pandemic passed late last week. The bills now await Mayor Bill de Blasio’s signature, who is expected to sign them into law, according to a spokesperson for mayor’s office.

The bills are aimed at aiding smaller shops and restaurants. One bill, Intro. 2234, includes waiving 75 percent of all unpaid code violations — issued by city agencies such as the health, sanitation, and transportation departments — that were issued on or after March 7, 2020. A second bill, Intro 2233, proposes amendments to over 180 different city codes by lowering fines and allowing for warning periods that aim to allow businesses and agencies to have more of a dialogue.

If the mayor signs the bills, restaurants would receive a 25 percent reduction in fines and interest payments for penalties levied on them before March 7, 2020, and 75 percent during the pandemic, according to Crain’s New York.

“Now, instead of immediately hitting small businesses with huge penalties, inspectors have an opportunity to educate and allow them to fix it, before levying unnecessary and burdensome fines for minor violations” said Andrew Rigie, executive director of the NYC Hospitality Alliance, in a statement.

In other news

— Danny Meyer’s Daily Provisions plans on opening two new locations this summer. A West Village debut, at 29 Bedford Street, was recently announced and now a late August opening is planned at Brookfield’s Manhattan West, 90 Manhattan West Plaza, below Union Square Hospitality Group’s latest restaurant Ci Siamo, according to a restaurant spokesperson.

— The latest Sunday Routine column in the New York Times follows Russell Jackson, the chef of Reverence in Harlem.

— Nearly 15 months after operating as a market, Bed-Stuy favorite Hart’s announced it will go back to being a restaurant again. The market will close on July 3 and reopen a few weeks later but no set date has been announced.

— Also in Bed-Stuy, Fany Gerson’s Fan-Fan Doughnuts will roll out a menu of sundaes for the summer.

— Empanology, which started off as a pop-up offering creative riffs on empanadas, is now serving brunch at the Bronx Brewery on weekends.

— Rule of Thirds and Chefs Stopping AAPI Hate are collaborating for a sake tasting on June 24 at 6 p.m., which will raise funds for the National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance. Tickets ($75) can be booked on Resy.

— Post Company, a design studio, and chef Lee Desrosiers (formerly of Achilles Heel and Scribe Winery in Sonoma) are hosting a series of dinner pop-ups at various upstate properties, dubbed Hell Chicken for their slow-smoked and fire-roasted chicken menu. Upcoming venues include Brentwood in Saratoga Springs (June 24), Scribner’s in Hunter (June 28), and Callicoon Hills in Callicoon Center (June 30).

— Fit for royalty:

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