Home U.S NY restaurants and bars win court victory against Gov. Cuomo's 11pm curfew

NY restaurants and bars win court victory against Gov. Cuomo's 11pm curfew


An upstate New York restaurant owner, along with his legal representatives, discussed new developments in their case against Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s restaurant curfew on Monday.

Donald Swartz, who owns Veneto Wood Fired Pizza and Pasta in Rochester, N.Y., told “Fox & Friends” on Monday that the 11 p.m. curfew in New York, which was implemented by the state, “just got removed” for 90 restaurants and bars over the weekend.

Last month, Cuomo increased the state’s curfew by an extra hour saying that starting Sunday February 14, bars and restaurants were allowed to remain open until 11 p.m. instead of 10 p.m. in New York because of the continuing decline of COVID-19 infection and hospitalization rates, WROC-TV reported.

The 90 bars and restaurants suing New York state over the coronavirus-related closing curfew were allowed to stay open until their normal 4 a.m. closing time this weekend after a ruling Saturday night by a state Supreme Court justice.

The decision by Justice Timothy Walker, granting a preliminary injunction, took effect immediately, WIVB-TV of Buffalo reported. Walker’s ruling applies only to the bars and restaurants participating in the lawsuit, according to the outlet.  

Swartz’s attorney Steve Cohen and media relations liaison James Minner, with HoganWillig PLLC, argued that the curfew was not supported by science.

Earlier this month, the firm sued Cuomo, calling for a judge to make the state comply with its December request for access to state data on the transmission of the coronavirus. Cohen, who represents the plaintiffs, said at the time that the firm wanted proof that the state’s coronavirus restrictions were justified by scientific data, WIVB reported.

Cuomo’s office responded at the time by saying it was withholding comment until it could review the lawsuit, and asserted that any claim of the administration engaging in “deception or obfuscation” was “simply incorrect.”


Speaking on “Fox & Friends” on Monday Cohen said that currently his firm has “13 lawsuits out there already for various industries and there is room for more to come on board.”

“We found that really throughout the process of this with this governor and the way he’s behaved that little has made sense,” Minner added.

A spokesperson for Cuomo did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment on Monday.  

“It’s been a cat and mouse game from the beginning … just getting information out of the state of what we can, what we can’t do,” Swartz said on Monday, noting that it has been almost one year since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic.

He said that he and other restaurant and bar owners got together and reached out to HoganWillig for help.

Swartz pointed out that initially, about 10 different restaurants banded together, mostly in the Buffalo area, which has since grown to nearly 100 different small business owners.

“We’ve just let the law firm go after every little bit of stuff,” Swartz explained.

“Months ago we were being redlined where the city of Rochester could not serve indoor dining, but you can go over to the suburbs and you can sit down so it was quite difficult to operate under those conditions,” he continued. “The law office went to battle for us and got that removed.”

He went on to say that he hopes that following the recent development in his case that more changes are now implemented for the entire state.

“Really hoping that everybody can get back to as close as we can to full dining and we can get our employees, get our staff back to work. That’s really what we want to do,” Swartz said.


“Let us do what we do best, get back to work, provide a service, provide jobs and provide some taxes back to the state, which [has] got to be much needed at this point.”

Fox News’ Dom Calicchio contributed to this report.


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