On Friday, Boston Mayor Michelle Wu canceled her 2 p.m. public press conference and instead sent a letter to North End restaurants.
A copy of the letter can be found here. Mayor Wu’s letter reiterates that North End restaurants will have to pay a permit fee of $7,500 for outdoor dining and the mayor even went as far as threatening to eliminate the outdoor dining option before the start of the season. Restaurants that want to offer outdoor dining need to apply by April 10. North End restaurants can begin outdoor dining on May 1, one month after other restaurants in the city can.
“For many restaurants, the Easter holiday in April, Mother’s Day in early May, followed by graduations in June, are among the busiest days of Spring and early Summer. Mayor Wu should be doing everything she can to help North End restaurants recover and be in the best possible situation to take advantage of these upcoming holidays. Sadly, the mayor is instead hiding behind a computer, sending these restaurants a letter on a Friday afternoon with a threat to shutdown outdoor dining all together, unless they go along with her arbitrary and costly mandates,” stated Paul Diego Craney, spokesperson for Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance.
“Instead of punishing restaurants, the new Mayor should be spending her first Spring and Summer months working with her new constituents and seeing how she can help them. It’s very unfortunate that the new mayor’s first inclination is to force more costly mandates and shutdowns of businesses that have been struggling throughout the last two years, concluded Craney.