Mayor Bill de Blasio talked at length Wednesday in response to a question about his plan to reopen the city’s restaurants and bars — but he offered zero new details on how and when that would happen while threatening “aggressive” enforcement of businesses that reopen before he says they can.
The mayor said officials are still “looking” into implementing outdoor dining when the city emerges from its coronavirus coma.
“We’re going to figure out how and when we can reopen bars and restaurants, how much outdoors is going to play a crucial role in that,” de Blasio told reporters during his daily press briefing.
He threatened businesses that open up in defiance of the state’s mandatory shutdown order that they’ll face summonses — or worse, closure.
“If people jump the gun and they don’t follow the rules … of course we’re going to enforce this and we’re going to enforce this aggressively because we have to get this right,” the mayor said.
On Tuesday, de Blasio said he was “confident” the city would begin phase one of reopening by “the first or second week of June” — but was mum on other details, frustrating business owners looking for guidance.
Restaurants are not permitted to open until phase three of the state’s four-tier reopening plan.
Earlier this month, de Blasio offered up a vague idea of what dining in the city would look like post-coronavirus, saying outdoor seating was “an interesting option we’re looking at.”
He reiterated that possibility again Wednesday.
“That’s not part of phase one but it is something we’ll have more to say on soon,” he said.