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Inwood Pols Demand Yearlong Ban on New Liquor Licenses

By Sybile Penhirin | October 22, 2015 11:47am
 A map of the proposed moratorium area.
A map of the proposed moratorium area.
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Adriano Espaillat Office

MANHATTAN — A yearlong freeze on new liquor licenses in Inwood is being demanded by politicians who claim a recent spate of bar and restaurant openings led to an increase in noise complaints.

The 12-month moratorium — proposed by state Sen. Adriano Espaillat with the support of Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez — would affect "on-premise" liquor licenses covering a swath of Inwood and would not impact restaurants serving wine and beer, according to officials.

It would also not impact current pending licenses or renewals, according to Espaillat's office.

While community boards vote to recommend approving or denying an establishment's bid to serve booze, the New York State Liquor Authority has the final word in deciding whether to grant a license.

The number of establishments serving alcohol in Inwood jumped from 20 in 2012 to 33 currently, with five additional applications currently pending, a spokesman for Espaillat said. 

In January 2015, Inwood ranked No. 1 in terms of loud-party complaints made to the city's 311 service, according to the New Yorker.

Espaillat is planning to introduce legislation regarding the freeze when the legislative session resumes in January, his office said.