NEW YORK CITY CABARET LAW REPEAL RESOURCES

Note: This page has been established by Zort Music in order to provide a resource for information concerning reform of the laws in New York City related to dancing.

It is a work in process. We are looking for a volunteer web designer with content management systems experience to help with this site. In the meantime, for the moment, we are just trying to collect and post the content. Suggestions/correctiions to sugarman@sugarlaw.com.

Contents

THE CABARET LAW

Text of 1926 Law

Text of Current Law

Cabaret Definition Current Law

Hotels Not Exempted

Membership Corporations Not Exempted

Pre-1926 Clubs Etc. Exemption

Other Exemptions

DCA Interpretation of Exemptions

ISSUES

Controversies

Was the 1926 Law Enacated for Racist Reasons

The Cabaret Law and the the Three-Musician Rule

Was the 1926 City Council Statement Per Se Racist?

Three-Musician-Rule Not in 1926 Law

Three-Musician Rule Not Racist

No Evidence of Discriminatory Enforcement against Harlem Clubs

Is Compliance with the Cabaret Law difficult

Historian Michael Lerner Dry Prohibition

Paul Chevigny Unsourced Racism Claims

Runnin' Wild

OTHER LAWS REGULATING DANCING IN NEW YORK CITY

Repeal of the Cabaret Law Will Not "Legalize" Dancing in New York City

The Zoning Resolution - Use Group 6

2017 Legislation to Repeal Cabaret Law

Proposed Definition of NIghtlife Establishment in Repeal Legislation as of June 19, 2017

June 19, 2017 Hearing

June 19, 2017 Hearing Materials

September 14, 2017 Hearing

Leading Cases

Department of Consumer Affairs Interpretations

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Text of the 1926 Cabaret Law

The 1926 Cabaret Law is often misrepresented as to its content. The original text is not explicitly racist, as some claim. For example, the original law required a Cabaret License if even one musicians was playing. In 1961, the Cabaret Law was amended to allow three musicians to play without a Cabaret License, and restricted the types of instruments, to what some call non-jazz instruments, thereby allegdly targeting jazz and blacks and harlem. This construction is quetsionable, but, clearly this three-musician rule was not in the original. The missinterpretation seems to be at the base of the "explicitly racist" claim, but, without doubt that was not in the 1926 Law.

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Text of the 2017 Cabaret Law

Just as the 1926 Cabaret Law is misrepresented, the current version of the Cabaret Law is misrepresented as well.

Cabaret Definition Current Law

3. "Cabaret." Any room, place or space in the city in which any musical entertainment, singing, dancing or other form of amusement is permitted in connection with the restaurant business or the business of directly or indirectly selling to the public food or drink, except eating or drinking places, which provide incidental musical entertainment, without dancing, either by mechanical devices, or by not more than three persons.

Hotels Not Exempted

There is no exemption of hotels in the current law, although the 1926 version exempted hotels with over 50 rooms.

Membership Corporations Not Exempted

b .§ 20-360 b.- A membership corporation, club, association or society which permits musical entertainment, singing, dancing or other form of amusement in premises wherein food or drink is directly or indirectly sold to its members, or their guests, or to the public, shall be deemed to be conducting a cabaret hereunder.

Pre-1926 Clubs Etc. Exemption

§ 20-362 a. Premises owned, occupied and used exclusively by a membership corporation, club, society or association, provided such membership corporation, club, society or association was in actual existence prior to January first, nineteen hundred twenty-six.

Relgious Other Institutions Exempted

§ 20-362 b. Premises owned, occupied and used exclusively by a religious, charitable, eleemosynary or educational corporation or institution.

Comment: Seems not to apply if made available to non-members. See 20-360 b.

Other Exemptions

§ 20-362 c. Premises licensed pursuant to subchapters one and three of this chapter.

Subchaper 1 is Retail Cigarette Dealers

Subchpager 3 is Amusement Devices, Arcades, and Operators.

DCA Interpretation of Exemptions

[to be added]

 

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Issues

Controversies

As might be expected, there are controversies and differences of opinion as to the Cabaret Law.

Was the 1926 Law Enacated for Racist Reasons

Some claim that the law was racist in its origins and directed at Harlem jazz clubs while others disagree. If this were so, one would think that from contemporaneous newspaper accounts, for example in the Amsterdam News, that there would be scores of reports of harassment of cabaret clubs in Harlem following the adoption of the law in 1926. Chevigny cites to no sources as to discriminatory enforcement.

The Cabaret Law and the the Three-Musician Rule

The Cabaret Law as Enacted in 1926 did not include the Three-Musician Rule; some falsely claim that the rule was explicitly racist, but use the false claim that it was in the 1926 law to bolster the allegation that the 1926 Law was explicitly racist.


The Three-Musician Rule did not become a part of the Cabaret Law until 1971; at that time, claims of explicit racism are questionable, since by 1971 jazz was performed by all demographics. Classical quartets required a license, but a jazz singer with piano and bass did not. A similar rule is found in a related 1961 law relating to coffee houses.


That the Cabaret Law as Enacted in 1926 did not include the Three-Musician Rule is evident by merely reading the law, copy enclosed. Some erroneously make the claim that the Three-Musician Rule in the original text was evidence that the 1926 law was explicitly in its intent to control interracial mixing and targeting jazz clubs in Harlem.


As stated by the New York Supreme Court in Warren Chiasson v. New York City Department of Consumer Affairs, 132 Misc. 2d 640, New York Supreme Court, 1986:


Local Laws, 1961, No. 95 of City of New York provided an exception for those "coffee houses" which provided incidental musical entertainment without dancing, either by mechanical devices, or by not more than three persons playing piano, organ, accordion, guitar, or any other string instrument.
* * * *
In 1971, the Cabaret Law was changed to its present form and that portion of the exemption for musical entertainment that was contained in the "coffee house law" was incorporated into the exemption under the Cabaret Law.


By 1971, when the three-musician rule formally became part of the Cabaret Law, the exception also included “or by not more than one singer accompanied by himself or a person playing piano, organ, accordion, guitar or any stringed instrument.” Professor Paul Chevigny Gigs: Jazz and the Cabaret Laws in New York City, 2d ed., (2005), p. 15.


This rule discriminated particularly against the playing of jazz because wind instruments and drums could not avail themselves of this exception, although jazz could still be played with piano and bass and classical string quartets also could not be played. By 1971, jazz was performed by white and black musicians, and, it is a stretch to claim that because the rule affected jazz music that the new rule was explicitly racist.


The Chiasson court which overruled the three-musician rule found that: "However, it appears that cabaret licensing was introduced in the city in 1926, as part of an effort to control speakeasies." and did not in any way mention racist overtones, nor did apparently the plaintiffs in that case raise racism and interracial dancing etc. as an issue.

Warren Chiasson v. New York City Department of Consumer Affairs, 132 Misc. 2d 640,  New York Supreme Court, 1986

Three-Musician-Rule Not in 1926 Law

Some claim incorrectly that the three musician rule was in the 1926 law and is explicit evidence that the law was enacted with racist intent. It was not and did not become part of the Cabaret Law until 1971. There is no provision of the current law that allows 3 persons to dance without invoking the Cabaret Law. The myth is a result of less than careful reading of the law and confusing the three-musician-rule with the number of dancers allowed.

The Three-Musician-Playing-Rule of 1971

The current law still includes the so-called three-musician-rule as applied to the number of musicians who may play without a Cabaret License, and was made a part of the Cabaret Law in 1971. This rule was declared unconstitutional in 1988 in the second Chiasson decision. The first Chiasson Case in 1986 ruled that the part of the rule that involved restrictions to certain types of music was also unconsitutional. The myth that has been promulgated is that the 1971 Three-Musician-Rule specifying the types and number of instruments was racists because it had a disparate impact on African-Americans, because it had a disparate impact on Jazz. This is faulty reasoning since there may have been as many white musicians playing Jazz in 1971 as there were African-American musicians. Regardless, this rule was not in the law in 1926. See below.

Three-Musician Rule Not Racist

Some claim the three musician rule with its limitation on types of instruments was racist. This rule, which became part of the law in 1971, was actually a relaxation of the law, not an enactment of a restriction. It is true that the relaxation of the law discriminate against jazz, particularly because the drums and horns were not allowed. But, this affected all of jazz musicians, not jut African-American musicians. This is a silly claim and is not the reality. See below.

 

 

 

No Evidence of Discriminatory Enforcement against Harlem Clubs

Many have claimed that the Cabaret Law was enforced in a discriminatory manner against Harlem jazz clubs and against African-American establishments. During Prohibition, some may not distinguish between enforcement against speakeasies by the US Goverment, and enforcement by the City for not registering or faiiling to respect closing hours.

Interestingly, proponents of this view are not able to identify clubs that were discriminated against. Almost all of the clubs mentioned at the City Council hearings and in Chevigny's book as having Cabaret Law issues are anything but Harlem or primarily Afro-American venues: the Eagle Tavern, the Whippoowhill, Freddy's Supper Club, Mikell's, Cajun's the West End etc. as referred to at 116-117 of his book are all downtown clubs. The one Harlem club as Sutton's on West 145th Street. Other venues having Cabaret Law issued include CBGB's and the LImelight. Chevigny in Chapter 3 of his book mentions many jazz clubs, without reference to those being shut down for cabaret law violations.

Is Compliance with the Cabaret Law difficult

The Cabaret Law is not so hard to comply with, in referring to obtaining a license from the Department of Consumer Affairs. The major impediment are being located in a zoning districts allowing dancing, complying with the NYC Fire Code, and complying with the NYC Building Code. Once there is compliance with these regulations, then the impediments for obtaining a Cabaret Licenses are not excessive. Most venues already provide video surveillance and the registration of security guards is required only if the venue has security guards. The primary barrier in getting a Cabaret License is obtaining approval from the local community board. Another element is that having a license provides the police and State Liquor Authority with an expedient way to shut down an establishment if neighbors complain of noise, and, hate to say it,but if gratuities are not paid.

 

 

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Was the 1926 City Council Statement Per Se Racist?

Many fall back on the 1926 City Council Statement as the sole evidence of racism.

Your Committee gave two public hearings on this bill and its adoption was urged by the Police and License Commissioners, by clergymen of various denominations and citizens interested in social and recreational work. It was opposed by licensees and owners of cabarets, personally and by their attorneys, and by representatives of musical organizations.

These night clubs or cabarets are simply dance halls , where food is served at exorbitant prices to the tune of jazz and tabloid entertainment. A very frank opposition was voiced by one of the licensees, on the ground that when strangers came to New York they wanted to 'run Wild.' Well, there has been altogether too much running 'wild' in some of these nightclubs and in the judgment of your committee the 'wild' stranger and the foolish native should have the check-rein applied a little bit. It is well known that the 'wild' strangers are not at all interested in our great museums of art and history, in our magnificent churches and public libraries , our splendid parks and public monuments. They are interested in speakeasies and dance halls and return to their native heaths to slander New York.

Your committee believes that those 'wild ' people should not be tumbling out of these resorts at six or seven o'clock in the morning to the scandal and annoyance of decent residents on their way to daily employment. Favorable action is recommended.

Some read this as explicit racism. To those, running wild refers to foolish natives - blacks running wild in Harlem Speakeasies, as to whom a check rein needs to be applied, as if these black natives were work horses. in this view, "natives" refers to Afro-Americans. But, then, there are inconsistencies - is the "wild stranger"s a reference to those whites visiting the City, or to Afro-Americans in Harlem, which is doubled up with the reference to strangers came to New York they wanted to 'run Wild.' So, it seems that the "check rein" was to be applied both to white strangers coming to these Harlem clubs as well as the Afro-Americans in Harlem, of course assuming that none of the patrons who were natives were white. The finders of racisms also focus on the word "native", but the white strangers are returning to to their native heaths.

To further the claims of explicit racism, the finders of racsim focus on the tune of jazz, neglecting to acknowledge that jazz was widely played by white musicians and at locales other than Harlem, showing ignorance of jazz history of the 20s.

Then the finders of racism ignore the first sentence as to those supporting the law, mentioning "clergymen of various denominations and citizens interested in social and recreational work." The 1920s were compicated and not susceptible to simplistic analysis. See Chapter 8 of Lerner's book. After the Cabaret Law was enacted, black and tan (integrated) clubs flourished downtown at the Black Bottom and Seven-Eleven and uptown at Small's Paradise, Connies Inn, and the Savoy Ballroom Lerner at 216-217. Those in Harlem at the same time objected to enforcement of Prohibition at clubs in Harlem and at the same time complained about the need to enforce laws against vice. Lerner at 221. Note that the Cabaret Law was not needed to enforce Prohibition in Harlem Speakeasies.

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Historian Michael Lerner States: 1926 Law - No Evidence To Regulate Jazz Clubs or Interracial Dancing

Historian Michael Lerner definitive book on Prohibition appears to be the only historian's analysis of the inception of the Cabaret Law, as introduced by Mayor Jimmy Walker in 1926. Dry Manhattan, Prohibition in New York City, Harvard University Press, 2007. Those expressing views claiming so-called racist intent of the cabaret law need to first read Chapter 6 of this book, available on Kindle for $9.99. Lerner was the consultant to the PBS Prohibition Documentary by Ken Burns.

"It has been argued that Walker's cabaret law was later used to regulate jazz clubs and , in particular, interracial dancing in Harlem clubs, but there is little evidence that this was the case during Walker's administration."

"Most important to Walker, the license requirements gave the city a means to shut down establishment that blatantly violated the law or otherwise created nuisances."

"[T}he cabaret law was enforced so sporadically and imprecisely under Walker that is served no purpose other than to encourage a modicum of self-restrain in the nightclub trade."

"In many regards, the law was Walker's way of taking back the regulation of city nightlife from the Bureau of Prohibition and allowing the city to set its own priorities rather than follow the federal agenda."

"Chandler Owen concurred, writing in The Messenger that "certain Negro leaders" were colluding with the Committee of Fourteen to "secure the adoption of segregation in the cabarets.' Their motivation, he explained, was that "it hurts such gentlemen to see white and colored people dance and drink together.'"

Despite this clear statement, many have cited Lerner as supporting the claims that the original intent of the law was to regulate Harlem jazz clubs and interracial dancing including the Wall Street Journal, the Huffington Post, the City Council Committee considering repeal of the bill, and a brief filed by Muchmore in the United States District Court. This incorrect citation has helped create the echo chamber of claims of racism.

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Paul Chevigny Unsourced Racism Claims

Those spouting race rhetoric about the Cabaret Law, for his book is their only academic source for anything close to justifying their claims only source of legitimacy is the Paul Chevigny's Book.

Clearly, a lot of race rhetoric has been spawned by a quotation for Paul Chevigny's book, Gigs and the Cabaret Laws In New York City, Routledge, Second Edition, 2005. Chevigny's was the lead attorney in the two cases challenging the Cabaret Law. The book is well researched as to facts and is a must read. Chevigny is a constitutional law professor at NYU Law School. So far, so good.

The book is focused mostly on post 1971 history, when Chevigny, an ardent jazz fan, first heard of the law. He is meticulous with the facts, pointing out that the three-musician-rule did not become a part of the Cabaret Law until 1971. He is also accurate to claim that this rule was directed against jazz, and not against African-American musicians and Harlem clubs. He is also careful to point out that the abused cabaret card rules were not strictly part of the Cabaret Law, and was a police issue. He does ignore, though concerns as to mob influence in New York City nightlife.

He spends very little space on pre- 1960 history, and almost no space on the history of the 1920s. Unlike Professor Lerner's work, he makes no citations to original sources such as newspapers, magazines, etc., except for a citation to the preface to the 1926 Law.

Here Chevigny suddenly departs from his careful analysis and writing and concludes that "“The ordinance must have been largely directed at the black music and dance that was performed in the Harlem jazz clubs as well as the social mixing of races that was part of “running wild””. Chevigny makes a number of questionable assumptions about the jazz and dance and politics of the period. But, to be accurate, he qualified his statement by not making a positive claim that "The ordinance WAS directed .."

First, as discussed below, Chevigny seems to have no knowledge as to the contemporaneous use of the phrase running wild. Really, the Charleston and its bands and white Flapper dancers shows that Running Wild was about white bands and dancers.

Second, Chevigny mistakenly arguers that in using the word "jazz", the Committee was referring only to that music performed by African American musicians in Harlem. That is not a factually supported argument. Jazz had a much wider meaning and at that time, most jazz recording were by white artists, due to discrimination by white controlled labels.

The relevant text is found is found at pages 54-57.

Chevigny does not address the fact that the Cabaret Law also regulated Public Dance Halls and Public Dances.

Chevigny cites here no contemporaneous sources except to a 1960 interview of one Elmer Rogers who helped draft the 1926 law. Chevigny describes the Roger's statements as follow as p. 55:

"To understand why this was enacted, you must recall that during Prohibition better than 90 per cent of the speakeasies were controlled by racketeers." He told how Texas Guinan, a famous proprietor of speakeasies, had opened one next to a church, forcing the outraged parishioners to encounter revellers leaving the place on Sunday morning . When the City could not get the owners of nightclubs to police themselves, the ordinance was drafted."

Chevigny, however disagreed based on a series of assumptions and the text of the statement of the Committee on Local Law which accompanies the bill, as discussed below.

Chevigny states:

When the City finally passed a licensing ordinance, it was regulating speakeasies, some of which were no doubt as elegant as the famous cabarets, although more were, as we have seen, just "joints" with music and dancing

Chevigny provides no authority that speakeasies all had live music and dancing when they music may have been recorded and dancing was not the routine. Note that the Cabaret Law in 1926 applied even if there were no dancing.

Chevigny states at page 56:

The ordinance naturally threw together dancing and music in clubs because at that time the music was always played for dancing.

Chevigny provides no support for the claim that dancing and music always were together, and omits the fact that the law regulated speakeasies with music and no dancing.

Chevigny then states at 57:

in 1926, the "jazz" about which the aldermen complained was being played mostly in Harlem.

This was the most questionable assumption by Chevigny; indeed, it is as if he defined jazz as music played only in Harlem, rather than music which encompassed Ragtime, Dixieland, the Charleston and other musical forms, and also disregarded the large numbers of white musicians playing and recording jazz in 1926.

Throughout this discussion, Chevigny provides no contemporaneous citations. He makes no reference as all to the fact that the law was initiated by Mayor Jimmy Walker and that federal law enforcement was breathing down his neck.

Base on this, Chevigny then makes this conclusion:

The ordinance must have been largely directed at the black music and dance that was performed in the Harlem clubs , as well as the social mixing of races that was part of "running wild," because in 1926, the "jazz" about which the aldermen comp lained was being played mostly in Harlem.

Chevigny had to hedge this "conclusion" for he says "must" with no evidence presented. He does not even suggest why in the middle of prohibition, the City suddenly found the urge to crack down on social mixing of races, just months after the Savoy Ballroom opened with an interracial crown which remained in operation until the 1950's. In other words, Chevigny has little to no sources for his conclusion. One would think that from contemporaneous newpaper accounts, for example in the Amsterdam News, that there would be scores of reports of harassment of cabaret clubs in Harlem following the adoption of the law in 1926.

In a following section, we show, in particular, that "running wild" was very likely not referencing "the social mixing that was part of 'running wild' but a reference to white Flappers dancing the Charleston.

Based upon Chevigny's not particularly deep analysis, the claim that the Cabaret Law from 1926 on was deeply racist and intended to crack down on Harlem club, on black, on homosexuals, on miscegenation etc. etc., with no restriction. To bolster these claims, the proponents of racist rhetoric even conflated the 1971 Three-Musician-Rule with the 1926 law, claiming that not only did that rule discriminate against jazz, but was explicitly intended to discriminated against Harlem clubs and black musicians - claims never made by Chevigny.

[THIS SECTION IS IN PROCESS]

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Runnin' Wild

Some imply that the reference to “running wild” in the statement accompanying the law is per se evidence of racism. However, “Running Wild” was the name of a show and a musical composition highly popular in 1926, and arguably the anthem of the Charleston Craze and Flappers, probably performed by as many white as black bands of that era.

The fact is that jazz in 1926 was not music exclusively played by black bands in Harlem clubs and running wild was more likely a description of the dancing of the Charleston.

See the Wikipedia article for the “Charleston (dance.)”https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charleston_(dance)

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Repeal of the Cabaret Law Will Not "Legalize" Dancing in New York City

The Cabaret law is but one of the laws and regulations limiting dancing at restaurants, clubs, bars and other venues. Thus, repeal of the Cabaret Law is but one step in making dancing "legal" in New York City. Of course, dancing is legal now, but only if taking place in a venue in a zoning district allowing dancing, with a Cabaret License, with a Certificate of Occupancy allowing dancing, complying with New York City Fire and Building Codes, and, if serving alcohol, with a license from the New York State Liquor Authority.

State Liquor Laws Administered by the New York State Liquor Authority.

Fire Codes Administered by the New York City Fire Department.

Building Code administered by the New York City Department of Buildings.
Example.
Cabaret Law Brochure Department of Buildings

Noise Codes administered by the New York City Police Department.

Most importantly, the New York City Zoning Resolution (zoning code) administered by the City Planning Commission.

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The Zoning Resolution - Use Group 6

Repeal of the Cabaret Law will have a marginal impact on the expansion of dancing in New York City for the dominant law restricting dancing is the Zoning Resoution which is the Zoning Code for New York City.

Permissible uses of a commercial nature are governed by 32-00 of the Zoning Resolution. At present, dancing is permitted in Use Group 12 and 10. The major problem is with Use Group 6, 32-15, however, we governe most of the commercial districts which are in or around residential districts.

Use Group 6 consists primarily of retail stores and personal
service establishments which:
(1) provide for a wide variety of local consumer needs; and
(2) have a small service area and are, therefore, distributed
widely throughout the City.

The important section for Use Group 6 are the following:

A.

Eating or drinking establishments, including those which
provide outdoor table service or have music for which there
is no cover charge and no specified showtime, and those
which have #accessory# drive-through facilities 2 [PRC-BJ

Eating or drinking establishments with entertainment, but
not dancing, with a capacity of 200 persons or fewer 4 [PRCB]


Eating or drinking establishments with musical entertainment
but not dancing, with a capacity of 200 persons or fewer
[PRC-BJ

The important provision in Use Group 12 is the following:

**Eating or drinking establishments with entertainment and a
capacity of more than 200 persons, or establishments of any
capacity with dancing [PRC-D]


In C4 Districts, a minimum of four square feet of
waiting area within the #zoning lot# shall be provided
for each person permitted under the occupant capacity
as determined by the New York City Building Code. The
required waiting area shall be in an enclosed lobby and
shall not include space occupied by stairs, corridors
or restrooms. In C4 Districts, such establishment shall
be a minimum of 100 feet from a #Residence District#
boundary, except that within 100 feet from a #Residence
District# boundary, such establishment is permitted
only by special permit pursuant to Section 73-244.


In C6-1, C6-2, C6-3 and C6-4 Districts, a minimum of
four square feet of waiting area within the #zoning
lot# shall be provided for each person permitted under
the occupant capacity as determined by the New York
City Building Code. The required waiting area shall be
in an enclosed lobby and shall not include space
occupied by stairs, corridors or restrooms. In these
districts, the entrance to such #use# shall be a
minimum of 100 feet from

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Proposed Definition of NIghtlife Establishment in Repeal Legislation as of June 19, 2017

Just prior to the June 19, 2017 hearing, the proposed legislation was amended to create a new category - "Nightlife Establishment", which would be subject to video camera and security guard provisions of the law being repealed. Not very much thought was given to this, for many restaurants and hotels in the city may find themselves subject to this definition which were not affected by the Cabaret Law.

Nightlife establishment. The term “nightlife establishment” means an establishment that is (i) open to the public after 12:00 a.m. at least one day each week; (ii) is required to have a license to sell liquor at retail pursuant to the alcohol beverage control law; and (iii) satisfies at least two of the following factors:
1.  At least 2500 square feet of such establishment is open to the public;
2. Has an occupancy load of at least 150 persons as described on the certificate of occupancy; or
3. Imposes a fee for admission at least once a week.

Note that currently, the cabaret law provides this clarification:

§ 20-360.2. Additional security measures for cabarets and public dance halls. a. No one shall operate a cabaret or public dance hall unless all entrances and exits used by patrons are equipped with digital video surveillance cameras, provided, however, that this section shall not apply to an establishment that operates primarily as a restaurant, as defined by section three of the alcoholic beverage control law, during all hours of operation.

This language will clearly expose more establishments to regulation. For that reason, some object to creating this new requirement, and prefer that these requirements apply only to Use Group 12 establishments. The difficulty there is that currently, all establishments under Use Group 12 are not required to provded video surveillance cameras.

The ABC law defines a "restaurant" as follows;

27. "Restaurant" shall mean a place which is regularly and in a bona
fide manner used and kept open for the serving of meals to guests for
compensation and which has suitable kitchen facilities connected
therewith, containing conveniences for cooking an assortment of foods,
which may be required for ordinary meals, the kitchen of which must, at
all times, be in charge of a chef with the necessary help, and kept in a
sanitary condition with the proper amount of refrigeration for keeping
of food on said premises and must comply with all the regulations of the
local department of health. Restaurant shall include a motion picture
theatre, movie theatre or other venue that shows motion pictures that
meet the definitions of restaurant and meals, and all seating is at
tables where meals are served. "Meals" shall mean the usual assortment
of foods commonly ordered at various hours of the day; the service of
such food and victuals only as sandwiches or salads shall not be deemed
a compliance with this requirement. "Guests" shall mean persons who,
during the hours when meals are regularly served therein, come to a
restaurant for the purpose of obtaining, and actually order and obtain
at such time, in good faith, a meal therein. Nothing in this subdivision
contained, however, shall be construed to require that any food be sold
or purchased with any beverage.

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June 19, 2017 Hearing

Link to New York City Council Legistar for Int. 1648-2017 , Establishment of a Nightlife Advisory Board. Hearing included testimony as to repeal of Cabaret Law.

Legistar Link to June 2017 Hearing

Sugarman June 19, 2017 Submission.

Committee on Consumer Affairs Report of June 19, 2017.

Bil as Proposed on or prior to June 19, 2017

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June 19, 2017 Hearing Materials

Video of June 19, 2017 Hearing

June 19 City Council Hearing Submissions Bookmarked And OCR'd

The version of statements provided by the City Council is in one Acrobat file and has no table of contents. This version has bookmarks and has been OCR'd.

Adam Snead.pdf
Alan Sugarman Attorney.pdf
Andrew Muchmore Esq.pdf
Andrew Rigie New York City Hospitality Alliance.pdf
Apperance Cards.pdf
Avram Solomon Turkel, Esq.pdf
Brooklyn Allied Bars and Restaurant David Rosen.pdf
Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce Melissa Chapman.pdf
Christopher Carroll Local 802.pdf
Greg Miller Dance Parade.pdf
Jamie Burkart NYC Artists Coalition.pdf
Jeannie Hopper Liquid Sound Lounge.pdf
Jerry S. Goldman, Esq.pdf
John Barclay Bossa Nova Civic Club.pdf
Julie Malnig Sally Summers Dance Historians.pdf
Julie Menin NYC Office of Media and Entertainment.pdf
Lindsay Greene Housing and Economic Development.pdf
NYC Artist Coaltion.pdf
Paul Seres NYC Hospitality Alliance.pdf
Regional Plan Association.pdf
Rosaline Dumanis.pdf
Shira Gans NYC Media and Entertainment.pdf
Susan Stetzer Community Board 3.pdf
Todd Patrick Market Hotel.pdf
Tracie Robinson Tango.pdf

June 19, 2017 Hearing Transcript - Bookmarked And Ocr'd - the Transcript Provided by the Council has no table of contents.

CHAIRPERSON ESPINAL p.5:
FRANKIE DEKAY: Dance Federation Network p.12
ANDREW MUCHMORE: Attorney p.18
BRANDON HOY: Roberta’s and Blanca in Bushwick p.26
CHRISTOPHER CARROLL-Political Director for Local 802, the American Federation of Musicians p.29
RACHEL NELSON -Happy Fun Hideaway, Secrete Project Robot and Flowers For All Occasions p.33
JERRY GOLDMAN: Attorney p.37
ANDREW MUCHMORE: p.46
BRANDON HOY: p.49
CHRISTOPHER CARROLL: p.51
CHAIRPERSON ESPINAL: p.52
RACHEL NELSON: p.57
CHAIRPERSON ESPINAL:p.58
RACHEL NELSON: p.58
COUNCIL MEMBER REYNOSO: p.59
CHAIRPERSON ESPINAL: p.63
SHIRA GANS: Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment p.64
LINDSAY GREENE: Senior Advisor to the Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development. p.70
SHIRA GANS: p.79
CHAIRPERSON ESPINAL: p.82
LINDSAY GREENE: p.84
SHIRA GANS: p.86
SHIRA GANS: p.88
COUNCIL MEMBER LEVIN: p.89
COUNCIL MEMBER JOHNSON: p.93
TAMALA BOYD: p.95
Amit Bagga, Deputy Commissioner at the Department of Consumer Affairs p.99
LINDSAY GREENE: p.102
CHAIRPERSON ESPINAL: p.105
JOHN BARCLAY Brooklyn Bar Operator p.105
Susan Stetzer District Manager Community Board 3 p.107
Andrew Rigie Executive Director of the New York City Hospitality Alliance: p.111
PAUL SERES NYC Hospitality Alliance: p.115
Alyssa Chapman Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce: p.121
PEDRO GOICO Mamajuana Cafe: p.124
PAUL SERES: p.115
SUSAN STETZER: p.133
ANDREW RIGIE: p.134
PAUL SERES: p.135
ANDREW RIGIE: p.137
PEDRO GOICO: p.139
JOHN BARCLAY: p.140
SUSAN STETZER: p.142
ARELIA TAVERAS: Latino—New York State Latino Restaurant, Bar and Lounge Associatio-p.143.
ARELIA TAVERAS: p.145
DOMINIQUE KEEGAN: former owner of Plump Bar in Alphabet City: p.149
ALICIA KAZZI: New York City Artist Coalition. p.151
GREG MILLER: Dance Parade p.156
JAMES BORA: Small Nightclub in Manhattan: p.161
AUBURN TERKEL: Attorney p.164
CHAIRPERSON ESPINAL: p.170
MAHANNA LANDONE: Dance Parade p.172
ALI COLEMAN p.173
TODD PATRICK: p.175
DIEGO VARGAS: p.177
DAVID ROSEN: Brooklyn Nightlife Coalition and for Brooklyn Borough President p.178
TODD PATRICK: p.187
ELVIS SILVERADO: p.188
AUBURN TERKEL: p.188
ALAN D. SUGARMAN: p.190
LUCILLE GRESLEY: p.194
NANCY MILLER:New York Artists Coalition p.197
JAMIE BURKHART: New York City Artist Coalition p.200
JOHN LEVY: NYC Artist Coalition p.202
LUCILLE GRESLEY: p.204
JULIE MALNIG: Professor of Dance History: p.205
EMILY EDWARDS Dancer: p.207
BRENDAN MCGLYNN: p.208
AYEL: Hi. Pearling.org p.209
JULIA SAMONIKOVA: freelance event organizer p.213
MOLLY MARTINEZ p.214
GARROLD DOLAN: p.216
JAMES DEER: DJ p.218
DEREK LEON WASHINGTON: Culture Anthropologist: p.219
JAMES DEER: p.221
GARROLD DOLAN: p.222
LEAH LONZO: Musician p.223
BRENDA NEVILLE: Dancer p.225

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September 14, 2017 Hearing

Committee on Consumer Affairs Report of September 14, 2017.

Link to New York City Council Legistar for Int. 1652-2017 , Repeal of the Cabaret Law.

Legistar Link to Hearing (includes another bill!!!)

Bil as Proposed on or prior to September 14, 2017.

Transcript of September 14, 2017 Hearing - OCR'd and Bookmarked

Proposed Bill September 19, 2017

Statements Submitted at Hearing This appears to be incomplete.

Video of September 14, 2017 Hearing

A letter was sent to the City Council on August 10, 2017 concerning the misleading claim that the 1926 Cabaret Law original intent. Sugarman Letter of August 10,2017. This Letter was attached to Sugarman's Statement submitted at the September 14, hearing. Sugarman Statement of September 14, 2017.

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Leading Cases

Following are leading cases on dancing and the NYC Cabaret Law.

Warren Chiasson v. New York City Department of Consumer Affairs, 132 Misc. 2d 640,  New York Supreme Court, 1986 (Chiasson 1)

Warren Chiasson v. New York City Department of Consumer Affairs, 138 Misc.2d 394 (N.Y. Sup. Ct., 1988) (Chiasson 2)

John Festa v New York City Department of Consumer Affair, 12 Misc. 3d 466 (Sup. Ct. NY County 2006.

John Festa v New York City Department of Consumer Affairs, 37 A.D.3d 343. New York Appellate Division, 2007 (on appeal from the NY Supreme Court 2006 case.)

Barnes v Glen Theatre, Inc. 501 US 560, United States Supreme Court, 1991.

Dallas v Stanglin, 490 US 19, United States Supreme Court, 1989.

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Interpretations of Cabaret Law By the DCA

Hotels with private spaces must obtain cabaret license. January 15, 2015.

Catering Hall Events Require Cabaret License - August 22, 2008.

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