The COVID Crisis: New York Regions Can Start To Reopen May 15, 2020 (Video)

May 4, 2020

New York’s governor Andrew Cuomo told regional representatives to prepare to reopen from May 15, 2020, but with detailed plans to closely monitor any resurgence of the new coronavirus.

The state’s stay at home order is set to expire May 15, 2020, and, for some areas, the governor suggested it is time for people to start their return to normal life. He made it clear that reopening would only affect areas less seriously affected by the virus, with hard-hit places like New York City continuing with the shutdown.

“It’s not going to happen statewide,” the governor said. “Rather than wait for the whole state to be ready, we will reopen on a regional basis.

“If upstate has to be waiting for downstate to be ready, it’ll be waiting a long time.”

There have now been nearly 320,000 positives cases of the coronavirus in New York State, but the case count is much lighter in some counties than others. Some have tens of thousands of cases, while others upstate have recorded only a handful.

Cuomo said any region that plans to start to reopen May 15, 2020, needs to come to him with a detailed plan that includes how rates of infection will be monitored, if health care capacity is enough to deal with any infection increase, and if the infrastructure is in place to do testing and tracing.

Regions also need to have a plan in place for how people will return to work, including what measures businesses will have to ensure social distancing and mask-wearing.


When plans are approved, businesses will go back in four phases:

  1. Construction and manufacturing first
  2. Professional services, retail and retail estate
  3. Restaurants, food services, and accommodation
  4. The last phase would be the arts, entertainment, and recreation businesses.

He said if any spike in infection rates is seen by the region, a hard stop would be put in place again reported Patch.

New York State has been under a stay at home order since March 22, 2020.


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