New York State Sen. Joseph Griffo, R-I-C-Rome, along with members of the Senate Republican Conference, today unveiled a package of legislation to help “Reset New York’s Restaurant and Hospitality Industry.”

The COVID-19 pandemic has presented unique challenges for all New Yorkers and crippled the state’s economy - in particular restaurants and hospitality businesses in New York State. Hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers work in this industry, including many hourly and tipped wage employees, and wait staff, bartenders and hotel workers have counted heavily toward the state’s skyrocketing unemployment numbers since the onset of the pandemic last year. State coffers have also suffered, as the hospitality industry is the number one source of sales tax revenue in New York City, and number two in the state.

The package of legislation unveiled today includes a bill introduced by Sen. Griffo that would provide for a credit on liquor license renewals for the amount of time bars and restaurants were forced to be shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Also included in the plan announced by the Senate Republican Conference were pieces of legislation that would:

·        Direct SLA-inflicted fines into a business relief fund to help small businesses get back on their feet (Sen. Mike Martucci);

·        Exempt small businesses from being penalized with higher unemployment insurance rates due to layoffs resulting from COVID-related, government-mandated closures and provide small businesses additional time to pay monthly sales and payroll taxes, as well as, business and property taxes (Sen. George Borrello);

·        Create a limited state sales tax exemption for the sale of food and drink at restaurants and taverns from state sales and compensating use taxes and granting municipalities the option to grant such limited exemption  (Sen. Daphne Jordan);

·        Provide a tax check off box that will direct funds into a business relief fund (Sen. Mario Mattera); and

·        Create an employee retention tax credit, modeled after the Federal Employee Retention Credit, to help employers keep workers on payroll (Sen. Peter Oberacker).

“The coronavirus pandemic has had a detrimental effect on New York’s restaurants, bars, and banquet halls and other venues, forcing many to reduce their hours, cut staff or close their doors for good,” Sen. Griffo said. “As we continue to confront this public health crisis, it is imperative that we consider and examine all the options that are available to help our struggling small business owners. This legislation will provide much-needed relief to establishments that are facing significant financial difficulties and uncertainties.”
New York State Sen. Joseph Griffo, R-I-C-Rome, along with members of the Senate Republican Conference, today unveiled a package of legislation to help “Reset New York’s Restaurant and Hospitality Industry.”

The COVID-19 pandemic has presented unique challenges for all New Yorkers and crippled the state’s economy - in particular restaurants and hospitality businesses in New York State. Hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers work in this industry, including many hourly and tipped wage employees, and wait staff, bartenders and hotel workers have counted heavily toward the state’s skyrocketing unemployment numbers since the onset of the pandemic last year. State coffers have also suffered, as the hospitality industry is the number one source of sales tax revenue in New York City, and number two in the state.

The package of legislation unveiled today includes a bill introduced by Sen. Griffo that would provide for a credit on liquor license renewals for the amount of time bars and restaurants were forced to be shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Also included in the plan announced by the Senate Republican Conference were pieces of legislation that would:

· Direct SLA-inflicted fines into a business relief fund to help small businesses get back on their feet (Sen. Mike Martucci);

· Exempt small businesses from being penalized with higher unemployment insurance rates due to layoffs resulting from COVID-related, government-mandated closures and provide small businesses additional time to pay monthly sales and payroll taxes, as well as, business and property taxes (Sen. George Borrello);

· Create a limited state sales tax exemption for the sale of food and drink at restaurants and taverns from state sales and compensating use taxes and granting municipalities the option to grant such limited exemption (Sen. Daphne Jordan);

· Provide a tax check off box that will direct funds into a business relief fund (Sen. Mario Mattera); and

· Create an employee retention tax credit, modeled after the Federal Employee Retention Credit, to help employers keep workers on payroll (Sen. Peter Oberacker).

“The coronavirus pandemic has had a detrimental effect on New York’s restaurants, bars, and banquet halls and other venues, forcing many to reduce their hours, cut staff or close their doors for good,” Sen. Griffo said. “As we continue to confront this public health crisis, it is imperative that we consider and examine all the options that are available to help our struggling small business owners. This legislation will provide much-needed relief to establishments that are facing significant financial difficulties and uncertainties.”