Joyce’s Tavern in Staten Island had never been visited by the State Liquor Authority before the pandemic. But they "selfishly" decided to hold a charity event for the Tunnel2Towers organization, which was created to honor the sacrifice of firefighter Stephen Siller who died saving others on September 11, 2001. New York City Councilman Joe Borelli, who held a book signing at the tavern last week, explained in an animated Twitter thread on Sunday how the city raided the restaurant without warning. He had an inkling as to why the city targeted this specific restaurant.
"On Thurs, They let me have a little book signing- Outdoors of course, on a small patio. I advertised the event from the same twitter acnt I use to bash Cuomo & de Blasio on a daily basis. The bar also has flags that wld make it seem like it was right-leaning."
"What a coincidence, on Friday, the very next night, the SLA goons come in for a surprise random inspection," Borelli wrote. "The first time there ever."
Despite their poor financial situation. They joined a number of local NYC restaurants that would be donating a portion of their proceeds on 9/11 to the @Tunnel2Towers foundation. Coincidentally, an organization that just embarrassed the Gov into restoring the Tribute in Lights(4)— Joe Borelli (@JoeBorelliNYC) September 13, 2020
What Borelli means when he says the Tunnel2Towers group "embarrassed" the city is that they held a live reading of the names ceremony to honor the victims of 9/11, whereas the National September 11 Memorial & Museum only played a pre-recording of the reading due to COVID concerns. Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani called it "disgraceful" and attended the Tunnel2Towers event instead.
Because so many New Yorkers have charitable hearts, especially when it comes to September 11, Joyce's Tavern was "packed" last week, Borelli explains. But they were being cautious. Some patrons needed a break and sat down on chairs inside the restaurant, but they weren't eating, just simply waiting for outdoor tables, Borelli explained.
Nevertheless, the State Liquor Authority arrived to "immediately remove and revoke their liquor license."
The tavern is expected to pay a $25,000 fine, which Borelli predicts will put them out of business. He asked Cuomo how he and his associates sleep at night.
Supporters have left encouraging messages on the Joyce's Tavern Facebook page, while blasting Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. Several others sent directions to the GoFundMe page set up for the establishment.