Topic: New York City

The Wrap Up – July 13, 2020

New Guidance on Reopening Schools in New York State

New York State today released new guidance and guiding principles for reopening schools in the State, available here.  According to the guidance, schools in a region may be permitted to reopen if that region is in Phase 4 of the New York Forward reopening process and if the region’s daily infection rate remains below 5 percent using a 14-day average. Schools will close if the regional infection rate rises above 9 percent, using a 7-day average, after August 1st.

Schools’ reopening plans are due to the State on July 31st.  The State will make final determinations on school reopenings during the first week of August.

Topics addressed by the State guidance include:

  • Masks/PPE (personal protective equipment)
  • Social Distancing
  • Cohort Structures
  • Restructuring Space to Maximize In-Class Instruction
  • Transportation
  • Food Service
  • Aftercare and Extracurriculars
  • Screening
  • Tracing
  • Cleaning and Disinfecting

Travel and Quarantine Guidance

Governor Cuomo today announced a travel enforcement operation will commence tomorrow, July 14th, at airports across the State to help ensure travelers are following the State’s quarantine restrictions.  Enforcement teams will be stationed at airports throughout the State to meet arriving aircrafts at gates and greet disembarking passengers to request proof of completion of the NYS Department of Health (DOH) traveler form, which is being distributed to passengers by airlines prior to, and upon boarding or disembarking, flights to New York State.  A new electronic version of the DOH traveler form also has been made available.

DOH also has issued an emergency health order mandating that all out-of-state travelers from designated states complete the DOH traveler form upon entering New York. Travelers who leave the airport without completing the form will be subject to a $2,000 fine and may be brought to a hearing and ordered to complete mandatory quarantine.  Additionally, travelers coming to New York from designated states through other means of transport, including trains and cars, must fill out the DOH traveler form online.

Joint Legislative Hearings on COVID-19 Impact

NYS Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and NYS Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie today announced a series of joint legislative hearings to examine how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted New York State, with specific focuses on higher education, residential health care facilities, hospitals, primary elections, workers, veterans, and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA).  The full schedule for these hearings, which will begin on July 28th and occur during the ensuing weeks, can be found here.

New York City Face Covering Guidance

New York City Mayor de Blasio today announced that all New Yorkers should wear a face covering indoors when they are around other people in a setting that is not their home. With cases rising among New Yorkers between the ages of 20-29, the City will launch a public outreach campaign geared towards younger New Yorkers, including additional mobile testing sites. Through a “Night of Action,” the City will conduct outreach through popular bars, outdoors restaurants, and waterfront locations, offering nearby mobile van testing and mask giveaways. The City also will partner with digital influencers to reach younger New Yorkers across social platforms and share guidance on how to prevent COVID-19.

New Testing Sites in New York City

Through partnerships with Federally Qualified Health Centers, the City will open 10 additional diagnostic testing sites in the Bronx, Brooklyn and Queens.  Please click here to find more information about testing sites throughout the City.

New York State COVID-19 Numbers

New York State is maintaining low numbers of COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths.  With that in mind, there still were 10 COVID-related deaths yesterday.

The Wrap Up – July 1, 2020

New York City Indoor Dining Postponed

Governor Cuomo today announced that the inclusion of indoor dining as part of New York City’s anticipated Phase 3 reopening on July 6th  will be postponed given that states across the country that previously reopened indoor dining are experiencing increases in COVID-19 cases.  The duration of the postponement will depend upon several factors, including local government enforcement of social distancing, as well as business and citizen compliance with social distancing.  The Governor also will look for the spread of COVID-19 around the country to stabilize before permitting indoor dining in the City.

New York City Announcements

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced NYC beaches are open today, and 15 outdoor public pools will open beginning on July 24th.  Mayor de Blasio also announced the Summer Youth Employment Program Summer Bridge 2020, a $51 million public-private partnership that will provide constructive engagement and enrichment activities to keep 35,000 New York City youth active and productive this summer.

Reopening Updates

The Capital Region today began Phase 4 of the New York Forward reopening process.

The Governor also announced that the State will create an enforcement department to supplement the local enforcement of COVID-19 guidance and restrictions.

Diagnostic Testing Criteria Expanded

The Governor today announced that New York State will expand its diagnostic testing criteria to all New Yorkers statewide, since the State now has the capacity to increase testing.

New York State COVID-19 Numbers

New York State is still maintaining the lowest number of hospitalizations and deaths since the pandemic began.  With that in mind, there still were 11 deaths yesterday.  

The Wrap Up – June 29, 2020

Reopening 

After review by the State Department of Health and international experts, Governor Cuomo announced that the Western New York region will enter into phase 4 tomorrow. As it stands currently the remainder of the regions are in the following regions:


Phase 4

  • Central NY
  • Finger Lakes
  • Mohawk Valley
  • North County
  • Southern Tier

Phase 3

  • Western NY (Phase 4 on 6/30/20)
  • Capital Region
  • Mid-Hudson
  • Long Island

Phase 2

  • New York City

New York City Indoor Dining

Today Governor Cuomo indicated that although New York City is on track to move to Phase 3 on July 6, it may not include indoor dining in the same vein that the other regions of the State have. The Governor indicated that although the current status of outdoor dining in the City is going well, indoor dining may still be a problem.

The Governor cited a few factors in the determination of the short term future on indoor dining.  In general, there is a lower level of compliance with social distancing regulations in the City as well as possible issues with the correct level of HEPA filters on air conditioners within the establishments as there are some HEPA filters that can remove COVID-19 particles from the air.

The State will continue to look into this issue and will make further determination by Wednesday of this week. 

New York City Council

The NYC Council is expected to meet tomorrow at 11:00 AM to vote on the NYC budget.  Negotiations continue but the city must pass the budget tomorrow by law or the State financial control board will take over the City’s finances. 

New York State COVID-19 Numbers

New York State is still maintaining the lowest number of hospitalizations and deaths since the pandemic began.  With this in mind, there still were 8 deaths yesterday from COVID-19, bringing the three day average down even further.  

The Wrap Up – June 26, 2020

Reopening

Governor Cuomo announced that five regions are officially entering into Phase 4 today. The regions are Central New York, the Finger Lakes, Southern Tier, Mohawk Valley, and the North Country.

Additionally the Governor stated that they are still holding back on the reopening of malls, gyms, and movie theaters as there is still further information that needed to be analyzed about the possible spread of COVID-19 through the recirculation of air within an air-conditioning system. The State Department of Health is currently working to see what solutions there may be to this situation as well as State Budget Director Robert Mujica who has been in contact with companies about the possibility of a filter that could solve this problem.

Inter-State Travel

As some other states have paused their current reopening processes, Governor Cuomo offered any help New York State could provide to assist them with their process, from equipment to personnel. As for the tristate Trip Advisory, the Governor is still looking into what can be done to enforce this and has been in contact with the Federal government as well as the airlines to see what possibilities exist.

New York State Fair

When asked about the possibility of the New York State Fair opening this year, the Governor stated that “right now we are not in a position to go ahead.” The Governor did indicate that there are still a few weeks remaining before they must make that final decision and they are in contact with the Fair about this issue.

New York City

Mayor de Blasio today confirmed Phase 3 will begin in NYC on Monday, July 6th.   This includes indoor dining at 50% capacity for each restaurant, and the re-opening of recreational areas (basketball, tennis, volleyball, handball and bocce courts, soccer fields and dog runs.  

Beaches will open for swimming on July 1st. 

The Mayor also announced there will not be a property tax rate increase.  He did not quantify how long his “no property tax increase” pledge will last. 

Mayor de Blasio did emphasize that the City is facing a $9 Billion deficit, and budget negotiations continue. 

New York City Outdoor Dining to Expand

Today, the NYC DOT announced it will expand outdoor dining to allow restaurants to take up an entire block. On Monday, June 29th, the application process begins and the program will begin on July 4th weekend.  DOT is working with the NYPD and FDNY to ensure emergency vehicles have access, and they expect the approval process to take 1 to 2 weeks.   

New York State COVID-19 Numbers

New York State is still maintaining the lowest number of hospitalizations and deaths since the pandemic began.  With this in mind, there still were 14 deaths yesterday from COVID-19, bringing the three day average down to 16. 

The Wrap Up – June 24, 2020

Interstate Travel Advisory

At a press conference today, Governor Andrew Cuomo, Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont and New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy and announced a “joint incoming travel advisory.”  The travel advisory would affect all individuals traveling from states with “significant community spread” of COVID-19, requiring them to quarantine for a 14-day period from the time of last contact within the identified state. In this case the term “significant community spread” would be defined as “a state with a positive test rate higher than 10 per 100,000 residents over a 7-day rolling average or a state with a 10% or higher positivity rate over a 7-day rolling average.”

Currently the travel advisory would affect travelers from the following states:

  • Alabama
  • Arkansas
  • Arizona
  • Florida
  • North Carolina
  • South Carolina
  • Washington
  • Utah
  • Texas

The travel advisory takes effect at midnight this evening.

Phase 4

Today Governor Cuomo announced that five upstate regions will be eligible to move on to Phase 4 this coming Friday, June 26. The regions, Central New York, the Finger Lakes, Southern Tier, Mohawk Valley, and the North Country will be allowed to have social gatherings of up to 50 people, which is an increase from the 25 people currently allowed in Phase 3.

The Governor also indicated there is still a hold on the opening of locations like malls and gyms in Phase 4 as they continue to look deeper into the possible effect of infection spread via air conditioning systems. Additionally in Phase 4, indoor religious gatherings will be allowed to increase from 25% occupancy during services up to 33%.

New York City

Mayor de Blasio today announced the city is facing a $9 Billion deficit.  After cutting $2 Billion from the city budget, the administration is seeking to cut an additional $1 Billion by working with the city employee unions to find cost savings. 

The City will expand the “Cool It! NYC” program to help New Yorkers beat the heat this summer. In addition to installing air conditioners for low-income seniors, the City will expand the number of outdoor cooling elements available for New Yorkers to enjoy during extreme heat and refine existing programs to better serve residents in heat challenged areas.

Mayor de Blasio announced the July 4th Macy’s fireworks will be spread out across NYC beginning on June 29th through July 4th. The Mayor and Macy’s announced that from Monday, June 29 through Saturday, July 4, Macy’s Fireworks displays will launch unannounced on select evenings across New York City. Each 5-minute display will feature Macy’s signature pyrotechnic scale with thousands of shells reaching heights up to 1,000 feet. The displays will be launched from one or two land or water based locations over the course of the week-long celebration covering every borough of New York City. A finale will be televised on July 4th beginning at 8pm.

New York City will begin to amend Alternate Side Parking(ASP) regulations beginning Monday, June 29th.  City streets will be cleaned no more than once a week. ASP is currently suspended through Sunday June 28th. Streets with multiple ASP days will be cleaned on the latest day posted on the street sign. The City will resume ASP next week and decide each week thereafter what ASP rules will be administered.

New York State COVID-19 Numbers

New York State is still maintaining the lowest number of hospitalizations and deaths since the pandemic began.  With this in mind, there still were 17 deaths yesterday from COVID-19, bringing the three day average up a tick to 18.