|Beer and wine are sold in this California theater where clip-on trays also holds food items.|
(Originally published 1/18/17)
In New York State you can sip a beer or a glass of wine while watching a standup comic perform live, listen to a lounge singer-pianist or a jazz quintet, or even stroll through a gallery to see an art collection or hear a speaker. If alcohol-friendly Governor Andrew Cuomo has his way, you'll be able to enjoy the same beverages while taking in a movie.
There is a small handful of movie houses in the state allowed to sell such beverages now, a result of a succesful 2011 lawsuit filed by Nitehawk Cinemas seeking such a privilege, but they must have table seating and offer a full restaurant menu. Hardly the same as sitting in your neighborhood moviehouse and sloching back into a comfy overstuffed seat while you take in the latest version of the "Hunger Games" franchise, and hardly a sufficient-sized venue to handle crowds for first-run films.
During his budget address delivered publicly on Tuesday, Cuomo said that in addition to dozens of revenue and regulation recommendations, "We also had a proposal that would allow alcohol and beer to be sold in movie theaters. And, it would be joined with an incentive program, to incentivize the movie theaters to sell New York wine and beer."
If successful, the proposal would be just another step in a long series of moves by the governor to aid the state's wine/spirits/brewing industry by simplifying regulations, expanding tax credits, creating promotional programs, and speeding up licensing.
“It is a very big industry for us," Cuomo said. "We have developed it, it’s going gangbusters, anything we can do to encourage it. It’s especially successful in Upstate New York."
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