CLYMER, N.Y. — Brittany Gerould is the general manager of The Dutch Village Restaurant in Clymer, one of seven completely dry towns and villages in New York state, meaning there's no selling or buying of alcohol.

"The business model has really functioned quite well without it," said Gerould.

What You Need To Know

  •  A bill in the state Senate is looking to overturn a decades old law allowing communities to stay dry

  •  There are seven completely dry towns and villages in New York state

  • The town of Argyle was the last to reverse the ban in 2019

A bill introduced in the state Senate would overturn a 1934 law that allowed communities to stay dry, and now permits the areas to buy and sell alcohol, which some lawmakers say would boost business.

Gerould says even if it became law, the restaurant would still stick with traditional beverages like soda, water and coffee, though the measure could ease some catering restrictions for wedding receptions out back.

"I know people do drink and everything, but just not having a bar here is huge. There's so many places that are right outside of town, so when you want to go have a drink, you can go there," she said.

At lunchtime in the town of Caneadea in Allegany County, Deputy Supervisor Philip Stockin gets a sandwich and a soda.

Caneadea, also a dry town, is home to a food truck, pizza shop and Chinese restaurant, none of which sell alcohol.

"I'm not opposed to alcohol, I'm very opposed to the abuse of alcohol," said Stockin. "[I've] seen too much stuff in my life in education with families and stuff."

He says it's not up to Albany to overturn the law, but up to local residents by gathering enough signatures on a petition toward putting the issue up for a vote, something the town has not done in decades.

"[It's a] local issue. Leave us alone," said Stockin. "Why should someone out in Albany who doesn't know our town at all want to dictate something here? But if the people want to change it, that's fine with me."

Gerould agrees that the issue should be left up to the people, who she says are not missing out.

"I just think we're happy with how it is," she said. "So, I don't think it's needed right in the village. Albany doesn't really know this town, and each specific town, so I think if they just let the towns decide, that it would just be way easier."

As for the legislation itself, Spectrum News 1 has learned that the Assembly version of the bill is currently in committee, but the Senate version is not.

Back in 2019, the dry town of Argyle overwhelmingly voted to reverse the post-Prohibition law and allow the sale and purchase of alcohol.