Local business owners fear impact of statewide business curfew
Some local business owners say Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s recent executive order is putting a strain on their businesses that were already suffering due to the pandemic.
The Ibiza Kitchen in Chappaqua is one of the many New York restaurants that are required to close by 10 p.m. because of new COVID-19 rules.
Owner Ignazio Blanco says he is coping with the new normal and its impact on his bottom line.
"It's going to be affected, but I have to follow the rules," Blanco says. "I'd rather follow the rules and be safe now and, maybe 3 months later, the problem goes away."
Bowling alleys that serve alcohol are also effected by the curfew, and private gatherings are limited to 10 people.
Louie Atienza, the assistant manager at Homefield Bowl in Yonkers, says the business was just starting to see light at the end of the tunnel.
"We were closed down for a little over five months, and to come back and have to close and lose all that business, it's just gonna hurt, because we're trying to dig out of that hole like everybody else," Atienza says.
With the latest early closing mandate now in effect for bowling centers, there is growing concern not only about the surge in COVID cases, but the economic impact on the business as well.
The management says Homefield Bowl, which sells alcohol and food, will lose about 20 to 30% of its business.
John Potter, a customer of the bowling alley, says, "It's bad all around for everybody. But what you gonna do until they get control of this? Ain't too much you can do, but follow the rules."
As it struggles to stay afloat, the bowling center continues to enforce protocols, including face coverings worn at all times, regular surface cleanings and Plexiglas barriers separating each lane.
There are also self-scanners so customers can take their own temperature.
Customer Angela Viola says the new guidelines may be tough for business owners, but it may be what is necessary to stay safe.
"I think it's a good idea, I think that everybody close," she says. "It's safer for us, for the kids, for our group here; we want to keep everybody safe."
Some business owners say they're bracing for even more restrictions if COVID-19 cases continue to spike.