Yardley Borough will continue to see more extensive outdoor dining for several more weeks after Borough Council at its Sept. 7 meeting voted unanimously to extend the relaxation of rules affecting such dining through Nov. 30.
The move is another attempt to aid restaurant owners whose businesses have been hurt by the coronavirus pandemic, council members explained. Allowing more outdoor dining is also a nod to safety at a time when the virus is staging a comeback via its Delta variant, they added.
Also at the meeting, council voted unanimously to approve a new four-year contract for its four full-time police officers and go out to bid on Phase Two of the North Main Street sidewalk installation project.
The continued accommodation for outdoor dining comes with the condition that restaurants don’t use it to exceed their total seating capacities, though that provision is not specifically spelled out in writing.
One resident complained the lack of specificity and “guard rails” is leading to abuses and that in some cases, capacities are being exceeded by as much as four times.
But councilman Uri Feiner said he thought the accommodation on outdoor dining was going well.
“I’d like to see what we can do to indefinitely extend it, and if there’s a problem, we can reevaluate,” he said.