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National Restaurant Association - New York drinks ban enforcement postponed

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New York drinks ban enforcement postponed

New York's board of health won't enforce the beverage ban it passed last year for at least 90 days from its original enforcement date, an attorney for the city said.

The attorney made the announcement during a Jan. 8 in-chambers conference related to a lawsuit filed in New York State Supreme Court that is contesting the legality of the ban. The health department unanimously passed the mandate last September.

The court also announced a two-week delay in the hearing on the ban. The National Restaurant Association, American Beverage Association and other plaintiffs in the suit have challenged the city's authority to issue the ban. The court will now hear arguments Jan. 23.

The mandate, as passed, would prohibit restaurants, delis, stadiums and arenas, concession stands and food carts from selling sugar-sweetened beverages in containers above 16 ounces. Banned beverages include soda, sweetened iced tea, some smoothies and coffee drinks and lemonade.

The ban was expected to begin March 12, but the City will postpone enforcement until June.

According to the attorney, the health department will engage in "education" efforts during the three-month extension.

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