Amendment of Sidewalk Café Rules

Adopted Rules: Closed to Comments

Effective Date: 
Thursday, August 28, 2014
Agency:
Download Copy of Adopted Rule (.pdf): 

 

Statement of Basis and Purpose of Rule

The rule amends sections 1-02(d) and (e), 2-44, 2-51, 2-56 and 2-57 of Title 6 of the Rules of the City of New York to implement the amendments to the Sidewalk Café license law and rules enacted by Local Laws 54, 137 and 139 of 2013. 

Local Law 54 amended the Administrative Code to clarify that a sidewalk cafe may open for operation as early as 10:00 a.m. on Sundays. 

Local Law 137 amended the Administrative Code to lengthen the term of a renewed revocable consent to operate a sidewalk cafe from two years to four years.  “Revocable consent” is the term used in the City Charter to describe an agreement made by the City allowing a person to maintain a structure on the City’s sidewalks.  The City Charter authorizes the Department of Consumer Affairs to issue a revocable consent to operate a sidewalk cafe. 

Local Law 139 streamlined the process in the Administrative Code for reviewing a petition for a revocable consent in order to shorten the time needed for approval.

Section 1 of the rule amends Section 1-02(d) of Title 6 of the Rules to conform with section 20-225(i)(1) of the Administrative Code as amended by section 1 of Local Law 137. It amends section 1-02(d)(1) to provide that the initial grant of a revocable consent and license to operate an unenclosed sidewalk cafe will be one, two-year license period to expire in the second year following the year of issuance of the license and revocable consent.  It adds subdivision 4 to section 1-02(d) to provide that the term of a renewed revocable consent will be two, consecutive two-year license periods.  The revocable consent and license terms are to be concurrent.

Section 2 of the rule amends Section 1-02(e) of Title 6 of the Rules to conform with section 20-226(g)(1) as amended by section 2 of Local Law 137. It amends section 1-02(e)(1) to provide that the initial grant of a revocable consent and license to operate an enclosed sidewalk cafe will be one, two-year license period to expire in the second year following the year of issuance of the license and revocable consent.  It adds subdivision 4 to section 1-02(e) to provide that the term of a renewed revocable consent will be two, consecutive two-year license periods.  The revocable consent and license terms are to be concurrent.

Section 3 of the rule amends section 2-44 of Title 6 of the Rules to conform with the amendments enacted by Local Law 139 to sections 20-225 and 20-226 of the Administrative Code concerning the application for, review and approval of petitions for revocable consents to operate sidewalk cafes.  It amends section 2-44(b) to authorize the Department to waive a public hearing on the petition by notifying the City Council and the petitioner of such waiver within ten days after the expiration of the period allowed for the Community Board to file a recommendation concerning the petition.   It permits the period to be extended up to 180 days at the written request of the petitioner to correct any deficiencies in the petition.  It amends section 2-44(b)(1) and (2) to clarify that it is the petitioner’s responsibility to publish a notice of the public hearing, if any, in a designated weekly newspaper and to post such a notice on the premises, which is consistent with established practice.  It also reduces the number of times that the notice of the public hearing must be published in a weekly newspaper from twice to once.

Section 4 of the rule amends section 2-51 of Title 6 of the Rules to reduce the paperwork required to be filed in connection with a license application during the period when the revocable consent will continue for an additional two-year period.  It amends section 2-51(a) to provide that the complete package of documentation – including the consent of the owner, architectural plans, photographs, insurance information, proof of Department of Health permit and a security fee – must accompany the application for a new or renewal revocable consent.  It amends section 2-51(b) to specify that the complete package of documentation set forth in subdivision (a) must also accompany an application to modify the revocable consent by adding tables to an existing licensed cafe.  It adds subdivision (c) to provide that an application to renew a license at a time when the revocable consent will remain in effect for another license term need not be accompanied by architectural plans or photographs.

Section 5 of the rule amends section 2-56 of Title 6 of the Rules to simplify the process for submitting a license renewal application when the revocable consent remains unexpired.  It amends section 2-56(a) to specify that multiple copies of the standard application form and required accompanying materials must be submitted when a petition for a new, renewal or modified revocable consent is also submitted.  However, only the original application is required when the revocable consent term remains unexpired. It amends section 2-56(b) to specify that an applicant is required to notify persons who occupy ground floor frontage within 50 feet of the  sidewalk cafe only when the submitting an application for a new, renewal or modified revocable consent.

Section 6 of the rule amends section 2-57(a) of Title 6 of the Rules to conform with section 20-224(b) if the Administrative Code as amended by Local Law 54.  As amended, section 20-224(b) prohibits the issuance of a rule, regulation, term or condition with respect to a revocable consent or license to operate a sidewalk cafe that prevents operation during the hours of 10:00 a.m. through 12:00 a.m. every day or permits operation before 10:00 a.m. on Sunday.