Topic: Wrap Up

The Wrap Up – April 11, 2020

New York City School Closure Confusion

Earlier today, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that the City’s schools will remain closed for the remainder of the school year.  In response, Governor Cuomo disputed the Mayor’s authority to issue this order.  The Governor stated that there has been no official decision on closing the City’s schools and that any decision should be coordinated with the larger metropolitan region that includes Long Island and Westchester County; preferably, such a decision also would include schools throughout New York State and even the states of New Jersey and Connecticut. 

Assistance for New Yorkers

The Governor called on the federal government to repeal ban on SALT deductions (state and local taxes that can be deducted on a federal income tax return), arguing this would do the most to assist the states and areas most impacted by COVID-19.  Additionally, the Governor announced that the New York State Court System will engage pro bono lawyers to help individuals struggling through various aspects of the pandemic, including assistance with filing for SBA loans.  Interested lawyers can visit nysba.org/covidvolunteer for more information.

New York State COVID-19 Curve Continues Flattening

Much of today’s public health messaging remained the same as yesterday’s.  New York State officials continue to see a flattening curve for COVID-19 hospitalizations, but the State must continue the “New York State on PAUSE” business and social protocols to maintain this promising trend.  The Governor highlighted that the number of intubations experienced a net decrease for the first time yesterday, and that this is a very positive sign.

COVID-19 Numbers

As of today, 180,458 people have tested positive in New York State.  The number of deaths in the State has increased to 8,627 from 7,844.

The Wrap Up – April 10, 2020

New York State Flattening the Curve… Currently

New York State officials are “cautiously optimistic” that the novel coronavirus infection rate is slowing.  The three-day average for hospitalizations has declined from recent weeks, and yesterday there was a net decrease in ICU (intensive care unit) admissions for the first time.  Governor Cuomo believes the State is “flattening the curve” for COVID-19 hospitalizations, but that we must continue the “New York State on PAUSE” business and social protocols to continue this promising trend.

Assistance for New Yorkers

The State is providing $200 million in emergency assistance to enrollees in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).  Additionally, the Governor is working with Congress to create a COVID-19 Heroes Compensation Fund.  Similar to the 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund, the Heroes Compensation Fund would benefit healthcare and other essential workers (and their families) impacted by COVID-19.

Reopening New York State

The Governor argued that diagnostic and antibody testing are the keys to gradually reopening activities in the State, but that the required testing volume cannot be achieved without federal assistance.  The State is working to increase antibody testing, potentially allowing those who have recovered safely from COVID-19 to return to work while more vulnerable individuals remain isolated. 

COVID-19 Numbers

As of today, 170,512 people have tested positive in New York State.  The number of deaths in the State has increased to 7,844 from 7,067.