New York authorities have dished out over $150,000 in penalties since Friday in the city’s new coronavirus hot zones, including five fines for religious gatherings, according to officials.
Some 62 fines have been dispensed under the new crackdown in Brooklyn and Queens, according to a Sunday afternoon post on the city’s official Twitter account.
The six-figure sum represents a different approach compared to a recent, far more anemic stab at enforcement by the city.
City sources noted that five of the fines — for the maximum allowable penalty of $15,000 a piece — were issued to the organizers of Orthodox religious gatherings in Borough Park, Brooklyn that each drew hundreds of people.
Sometimes violent protests raged late last week in the community following Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s decision to close non-essential businesses and restrict the sizes of religious gatherings in pockets of Brooklyn and Queens experiencing coronavirus spikes.
It was not immediately clear whether the fines were handed out under a new initiative announced by Cuomo in which state authorities would be supervising city manpower in a more stringent enforcement blitz.
The city Sheriff’s Office also busted up a clandestine rave in a Queens park early Sunday, though it technically fell outside of that borough’s two enforcement zones.
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