New York City restaurants face decision: Break indoor dining mandate or permanently close

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has made it clear that there are no plans to reopen indoor dining anytime soon and restaurant owners on the brink of permanent closure want answers.

The owner of Staten Island’s Max’s Es-ca, Max Calicchio, told FOX Business’ Kristina Partsinevelos that he’s stuck with the decision to either close his doors completely or open indoor dining against city regulation.

“It’s not viable for us to be around if we have to wait for a vaccine,” he said. “We can’t make our bills and pay staff. We’re going to be closed.”


De Blasio mentioned potentially holding off indoor dining until a coronavirus vaccine is available. So Max’s Es-ca along with at least 100 other restaurants are now looking to file a class-action lawsuit against the city.

“It’s very scary,” Deluca’s Italian Restaurant owner Rob Deluca said. “There are 25,000 restaurants in New York City who will most likely face the same fate together.”

Restaurant owners are also questioning the consistency of these city mandates since other businesses like gyms, retail stores and bowling alleys are all allowed to open indoors.

According to The New York Times, more than 2,800 small businesses in NYC have closed since the coronavirus outbreak while the restaurants left standing are relying on outdoor service to survive.