Background image of Brooklyn Bridge. Text reads the Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment, Supporting New York City's Creative Economy
Dear Friends,

Last weekend, I was able to enjoy a day at Rockaway (with deep appreciation to the Parks Department for opening up the beaches). The beach was incredibly beautiful, cleaner than I’ve ever seen it in my lifetime. Moreover, from the ferry to the beach, it was so heartening to see fellow New Yorkers enjoying themselves while maintaining social distancing and face covering protocols. Truly NYC at its best. It’s exactly that kind of self-possessed commitment and compassion for each other that’s going to advance a strong recovery for our beloved city.

Another thing we can do to keep each other safe is to get tested. The City is encouraging all New Yorkers to get tested even if you do not have symptoms or are unsure if you were exposed to COVID-19. COVID-19 tests are free and confidential. New Yorkers who test positive for COVID-19 will receive a call from the Test & Trace Corps to make sure that they receive care and can safely separate to prevent the spread. To learn more about the Test & Trace program and find a testing site near you, visit        

New York City is now in Phase 3 of reopening. Phase 3 includes personal care businesses and services, and an expansion of certain film and television production activity to include principal photography with a maximum of 25 cast and crew. Outdoor dining is also expanded to Open Streets, but indoor dining remains postponed until further notice.

Yesterday, Mayor de Blasio announced that large events requiring a city events permit from NYPD, the Parks Department, and the Street Activity Permit Office will be canceled through September 30. The City will not issue a permit for any event in a location that interferes with the Open Streets or Open Restaurants program. Permits also will be denied for all events larger than one block, stage/video events that require amplification, street fairs, and events in parks that may unreasonably diminish public use. Note: Film Permits are not covered by the Mayor’s Executive Order.


As of this week, the Film Office is accepting permit applications for Phase 3 production activity commencing on July 13 or later. The latest Commissioner’s Directive No. 7, plain language explanation, and FAQ are available on the Film Permit website. Please check the website for updates frequently and review the guidelines and FAQ before submitting permit applications. The Film Office is operating remotely, so please allow additional time for Film Permit processing.

All production activity, whether it requires a Film Permit or not, must comply with New York Forward Industry Guidance. Media production activities involve a variety of operations (such as scouting, set construction, and hair and makeup), and owners/managers of media production businesses should comply with relevant industry-specific State Department of Health guidance where applicable. See the State Department of Health’s Interim Guidance for Media Production During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency for more information.


The Office of Nightlife continues to work with our colleagues at the NYC Department of Transportation (DOT), NYC Department of Small Business Services (SBS) and NYC Health Department (DOH) to provide operational guidance for restaurants and bars participating in New York City’s Open Restaurants program. Information about Restaurant Reopening is available at or by calling the SBS hotline at 888-SBS-4NYC.

SBS has compiled a list of event production companies that rent or sell the equipment needed to safely transition to outdoor dining while complying with safety and accessibility regulations. Using this list, restaurants can contact several vendors directly to compare prices and find the best deal available.

The Office of Nightlife’s public awareness campaign It’s Up to You, New York encourages restaurants and bars, patrons and residents to work together to ensure that people socialize responsibly. The State's Executive Order makes businesses responsible for ensuring compliance with open container and social distancing rules within 100 feet of their premises. Businesses that repeatedly fail to comply will have their Open Restaurant authorization revoked and referred to the State Liquor Authority (SLA). Patrons who are just picking up orders are reminded to Take Out, Don’t Hang Out. Business owners can help promote these public awareness messages by downloading window posters and social media graphics here.


Information and guidelines for businesses reopening in Phase 3 are available at

Under the state’s New York Forward plan, each business must develop a written Safety Plan for preventing the spread of COVID-19. Businesses may fill out this template or develop their own Safety Plan, which must be conspicuously posted on site and made available to the New York State Department of Health or New York City health or safety authorities in the event of an inspection.

SBS is offering New York business owners a new set of resources to help them navigate the recovery and re-opening process. Small Business Advocates and Compliance Advisors will monitor a small business hotline—888-SBS-4NYC or 888-727-4692—to answer questions about the latest guidelines and regulations. SBS is also hosting Small Business Resource Fairs to provide information about requirements and guidelines to re-opening, safety plans, financial assistance, regulatory changes, employee support, licensing, inspections, and more.

The NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) offers information about reopening requirements and health and safety guidelines for the workplace, including FAQs for NYC Workers and an update about workplace laws for employers and employees to stop the spread of COVID-19. In addition, they have set up a Worker Protection Hotline at 311 or 1-212-436-0381 for questions about reopening or to report an employer that is not following reopening requirements.

DCWP and SBS also are working with business-serving partner organizations throughout the five boroughs to distribute free face coverings citywide to small businesses and their employees. If you are a small business looking to secure free face coverings for your employees, information is available here.

The Manufacturing and Industrial Innovation Council at SBS has launched the NYC PPE + Reopening Supplies Marketplace. The Marketplace provides a one-stop-shop for easy-to-access suppliers of (i) face masks and coverings, (ii) face shields, (iii) gloves, (iv) cleaning and disinfectant products, (v) physical barriers and portable furniture, and (vi) other supplies needed for re-opening. It represents both local and national suppliers and manufacturers to provide a wide range of order minimums.

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Earlier this week, The Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment, the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, and NYC & Company launched Virtual NYC Curator Collections, which features special collections of virtual experiences of New York City attractions, cultural institutions and entertainment venues handpicked by some of the City’s leading cultural influencers. Curators include Thelma Golden (The Studio Museum in Harlem), David Hatkoff (NewFest), Erika Elliott (Summerstage), Gina Duncan (BAM Cinema) and Andrea Bayer (Metropolitan Museum of Art); with Esther McGowan (Visual AIDS), Eric Sanderson (Wildlife Conservation Society), Suzanne Nossel (PEN America), Kamilah Forbes (Apollo Theater) and others to debut in the coming days.
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As always, please feel free to reach out with any questions, concerns or for support.

Stay safe,

Anne del Castillo
Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment
Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment