On Sunday morning Governor Cuomo updated New Yorkers the latest goings on with the coronavirus pandemic.
The governor cautioned again and again that the state was a long way from a full recovery, warning against a possible second-wave of the virus and noting on Sunday that 367 people had been killed by the virus in the last 24 hours, bringing the death toll to 16,966 people in the state. This is the lowest number in many weeks.
In laying out scenarios for a broader reopening of other businesses, Mr. Cuomo suggested that data would be evaluated in two-week increments, and that companies wanting to restart work would be individually evaluated to determine “how essential a service does that business provide and how risky is that business”, the NY Times reported.
With certain precautions, after May 15 construction projects and manufacturing jobs may be able to resume in certain regions, said Cuomo during an Albany press briefing, referring to the date through which his statewide shutdown order is currently in effect.
State officials are keeping an eye on “three basic dials” to determine exactly how much of the state’s economy to bring back online — and when to do it, Cuomo said.
Phase one of reopening will involve construction and manufacturing activities, and within construction and manufacturing, those businesses that have a low risk,” said Cuomo.
The state would then take two weeks to monitor for any flare-ups of the disease, before potentially moving on to the next step, Cuomo said.
“Phase two would then be more a business-by-business analysis,” said the governor.
That calculus would include looks at “how essential a service does that business provide, and how risky is that business,” said Cuomo.
Individual businesses cleared for reopening would have to thoughtfully consider what precautions they can take towards preventing a coronavirus resurgence.
He laid a heavy onus on businesses to develop their own plans for reopening, including outfitting employees with personal protective equipment, enforcing social distancing between employees and customers and instituting testing in the workplace, the NY Times explained
Mr. Cuomo’s comments offered hope for some upstate regions, the outlook for the New York City area seemed much more perilous, with countless calculations and safeguards being considered. Retail, tourism and hospitality industries — the bedrock of the city’s economy — would be difficult to restart quickly and without great care, the governor said, as would transportation and schools, which he has said he wants coordinated with neighboring New Jersey and Connecticut.
“They have to think about how they’re going to reopen with this quote-unquote new normal,” he said. “What precautions are they going to take in the workplace, what safeguards are they going to put in place.”
“The big factor here is what people do,” he said. “It depends on what people do, how smart, how disciplined they are through this whole process.”