coronavirus pandemic

NYC Party Boat Busted for Violating Social Distancing, Liquor License: Officials

10 to 20 percent of New Yorkers testing positive for the coronavirus report attending some type of gathering, city officials report

hundreds party on boat, violating social distancing laws

City officials say their enforcement efforts busted another large gathering over the weekend - this time deputies arrested boaters who threw a party Saturday night near the Lower East Side.

The owners and captain of the Liberty Belle were arrested by deputies for holding an illegal party on board, the sheriff's office said. The deputies intercept the vessel at Pier 36 on the Lower East Side.

By Monday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo's office announced the State Liquor Authority would not renew the license for Liberty Belle after operating over the weekend with an expired license.

According to The New York Times, the party boat held approximately 170 guests Saturday evening. Authorities reportedly boarded the vessel when it returned to the pier around 11:30 p.m.

"The sheriff's office has done an amazing job intervening," Mayor Bill de Blasio said at his daily briefing Monday. The mayor said outbreaks had not been traced back to any major outdoor gatherings, saying "indoors remain the biggest concern."

Dr. Jay Varma, a senior advisor for public health in the mayor's office, says no clusters have sprouted from large gatherings but a portion of New Yorkers who tested positive for the coronavirus have reported attending some form of gathering.

"We haven't seen any specific activities traced to large gatherings repeatedly," Dr. Varma said Monday. "In the past few weeks anywhere from 10 to 20 percent of people report being at any type of gathering."

A state task force has inspected 13,000 bars and restaurants in the last month looking for social distancing and liquor sale violations, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said over the weekend.

Copyright NBC New York
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