Search form

Proposed Amendment to New York Alcoholic Beverage Control Law Affects Hotels in State

By Alissa M. Yohey and Thomas Buchan
  • January 29, 2018

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has proposed language in his budget amending the definition of a “Hotel” under the state Alcoholic Beverage Control (“ABC”) Law Section 3(14) to eliminate the requirement for hotels to have a restaurant in the building of the hotel.

Currently, in order for a hotel to qualify for a “Hotel” liquor license in New York, there must be a restaurant within the building in which the hotel is located (the restaurant does not have to be part of the hotel, just in the same building).

Under existing ABC Law Section 3(27), a restaurant is defined as:

[A] place which is regularly and in a bona fide manner used and kept open for the serving of meals to guests for compensation and which has suitable kitchen facilities connected therewith, containing conveniences for cooking an assortment of foods, which may be required for ordinary meals, the kitchen of which must, at all times, be in charge of a chef with the necessary help, and kept in a sanitary condition with the proper amount of refrigeration for keeping of food on said premises and must comply with all the regulations of the local department of health…. “Meals” shall mean the usual assortment of foods commonly ordered at various hours of the day; the service of such food and victuals only as sandwiches or salads shall not be deemed a compliance with this requirement.

Hotels with just a “market” or “suite shop” in the lobby, but no restaurant, are not currently eligible for a Hotel liquor license in New York (since there was no restaurant in the hotel building). Those hotels have traditionally obtained “Tavern Wine” or “On-Premises Bar” liquor licenses, which allow only for the sale, service, and consumption of alcohol in “market” or “suite shop” areas of the hotel.
 
The proposed legislation removes the requirement that there be a restaurant in the hotel. Under the proposed legislation, in order to qualify for a “Hotel” liquor license, the hotel need only have:

[F]ood available for sale or service to its customers for consumption on the premises in the hotel or in a restaurant or other food establishment located in the same building as the hotel. The availability of sandwiches, soups and other foods, whether fresh, processed, pre-cooked or frozen, shall be deemed in compliance with this requirement.

If the proposed changes are signed into law, hotels that have only a “market” or “suite shop” in the lobby of the hotel will be able to obtain a hotel liquor license, thus allowing guests to purchase alcohol in the “market” or “suite shop” and take the alcohol back to their guest room or other areas of the hotel.

We will be monitoring this legislation and will provide updates on its progress. For more information on hospitality law or government affairs, please contact your Jackson Lewis attorney.

©2018 Jackson Lewis P.C. This Update is provided for informational purposes only. It is not intended as legal advice nor does it create an attorney/client relationship between Jackson Lewis and any readers or recipients. Readers should consult counsel of their own choosing to discuss how these matters relate to their individual circumstances. Reproduction in whole or in part is prohibited without the express written consent of Jackson Lewis.

This Update may be considered attorney advertising in some states. Furthermore, prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.

Jackson Lewis P.C. represents management exclusively in workplace law and related litigation. Our attorneys are available to assist employers in their compliance efforts and to represent employers in matters before state and federal courts and administrative agencies. For more information, please contact the attorney(s) listed or the Jackson Lewis attorney with whom you regularly work.

See AllRelated Articles You May Like

November 5, 2018

What Employers Should Watch For in Election 2018

November 5, 2018

Election Day may result in significant changes in our country’s labor and employment landscape. This article discusses some issues employers should watch closely. Arbitration Congressional Democrats have proposed legislation intended to overturn the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2018 ruling that employers do not violate the National Labor... Read More

October 30, 2018

Election 2018: Midterms’ Effect on Employment Law Issues and Advocacy

October 30, 2018

Voters will have the chance to determine the outcome of races for more than 6,000 legislative seats and 36 governorships, as well as weigh in on 160 or so statewide ballot measures, on Election Day, November 6, 2018. While the federal elections, including the battle for control of the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate,... Read More

October 23, 2018

New York City to Require Private Employers to Establish Lactation Rooms and Policies

October 23, 2018

Private employers in New York City will have to find space for a “lactation room” under legislation expected to be signed by Mayor Bill de Blasio. On October 17, 2018, the New York City Council passed two pieces of legislation (Intro. 879-A and Intro. 905-A) that will require employers to accommodate nursing mothers by providing a... Read More

Related Practices