The Wrap Up – May 27, 2020

Push for Infrastructure Projects

Governed Cuomo met with President Trump earlier today in Washington D.C. for the purpose of discussing ways to supercharge the State’s economy during the reopening process through investments in large scale infrastructure projects. The Governor focused on three projects: the Gateway Tunnel in NYC that would transport commuter and freight under the Hudson River, the Second Avenue Subway, and the AirTrain LaGuardia project that would create a direct rail system from LaGuardia Airport into Manhattan. The Governor said he anticipates that President Trump would follow up with him “next week” on these issues.

Continued Push for Federal Funds

Following the meeting with the President, Governor Cuomo provided his daily briefing at the National Press Club where he continued his pressure on Congress to provide federal assistance to state and local governments in the next version of any federal economic relief bill. He cited an article from the Wall Street Journal that indicated that state and local government economic recovery can lag for years if not provided federal assistance. He noted the prolonged recovery from the 2007-09 recession as a sign of the importance for this funding.

State Legislature Back in Session

Both Houses of the State Legislature are back in Albany this week as they convened for the first time since the passage of the State budget on April 1st. There were a number of COVID-related bills that were passed and both houses are back in session tomorrow. 

New York City

Mayor de Blasio today forecast the City’s deficit over the next 2 fiscal years (remainder of FY20 and all of FY21) could reach $9 billion if the federal government does not provide stimulus funding.  In the midst of uncertainty related to federal funding, Mayor de Blasio has asked the State to authorize the City to borrow money to balance the budget if needed.  On Monday, the State Senate introduced a bill that would allow the city to borrow up to $7 billion by authorizing the Transitional Finance Authority to issue debt to make up for potential losses in 2021.

New York State COVID-19 Numbers

Thankfully, we are now firmly on the far side of the New York State COVID-19 plateau. That said, the number of deaths in the State has increased by 74 since yesterday.

The Wrap Up – May 26, 2020

Mid-Hudson Region Reopening Today; Long Island on Track to Reopen Tomorrow

Governor Cuomo announced that the Mid-Hudson region has met the required reopening criteria and today will begin Phase 1 of New York State’s reopening process.  Long Island remains on track to begin Phase 1 tomorrow, May 27. 

Fast-Tracking Construction Projects

The Governor today announced that to support economic recovery, the State will fast-track the construction of the new Empire Station at Penn Station and the new LaGuardia Airport.  Additionally, the State will seek to build new cross-State transmission cables to increase low-cost renewable power production upstate for downstate demand, and similarly will work to expedite the transmission of Canadian power to New York City.

Meeting with President Trump on Infrastructure Projects

The Governor will meet with President Trump tomorrow in Washington, D.C. to discuss several infrastructure projects that need federal approval, including the following New York City projects: the LaGuardia AirTrain, the Cross-Hudson Tunnels, and the Second Avenue Subway expansion.

New York City

Mayor de Blasio today announced the city is working to get the word out and encourage all New Yorkers to get tested for the coronavirus, as it is readily available and free.  The City is also focused on hiring and training tracers and will have over 1,700 tracers ready to begin on June 1st.  Mayor de Blasio appointed former NYC Councilmember Annabel Palma to be the new Chief Equity Officer of the Test and Trace Corps. 

Anyone wishing to get a test in New York City can call 311, or visit www.nyc.gov/covidtest. You can call 866-749-2660 to schedule an appointment to be tested.  As the city increases the number of testing sites, they expect to be able to test 50,000 people per day by August 1st

New York State COVID-19 Numbers

Thankfully, we continue to remain on the far side of the COVID-19 plateau. That said, the number of deaths in the State has increased by 73 since yesterday.

The Wrap Up – May 25, 2020

Death Benefits for Frontline workers

Today Governor Cuomo announced that the state and local governments will provide death benefits for public employees who die from COVID-19 during this emergency. Governor Cuomo also called on the Federal government to show their support to all frontline workers by providing back hazard pay to such workers.

Legislative Session

When asked about the legislatures plan to come back into session this week, the Governor indicated that he is happy they are coming back but was wary of any legislative proposals passed that increased spending as the state is already running a $13 billion deficit. The Governor stated that “any additional money we spend increases the cuts to school aid, local governments and hospitals.”

Legislative committees worked over the weekend introducing and amending legislation. We will continue to monitor and provide you with individual updates on any specific bills of interest as they become available.

New York State COVID-19 Numbers

Thankfully, we continue to remain on the far side of the COVID-19 plateau. That said, the number of deaths in the State has increased by 96 since yesterday.

The Wrap Up – May 24, 2020

Campgrounds and RV Parks Can Reopen Tomorrow

Governor Cuomo today announced that campgrounds and RV parks can reopen statewide tomorrow, May 25.

Veterinarians Permitted to Reopen on Tuesday

The Governor announced that veterinarian practices will be able to open in all regions beginning on Tuesday, May 26.

Preparing for Long Island Reopening

The Governor reiterated that Long Island could begin Phase 1 of New York State’s reopening process on Wednesday, May 27, if its number of COVID-19 deaths continues to decrease and its contact tracing requirement is met.  In preparation for this, the Long Island Railroad (LIRR) is ready to add more cars to trains to help assist with social distancing.  The Governor also announced that the Nourish New York initiative, which helps connect upstate farms with those in need of food, has scheduled six new distributions this week in Long Island.  Anyone wishing to donate to Nourish New York can contact: [email protected].

Professional Sports Training Camps Reopening

Starting today, the State is permitting New York professional sports leagues to begin training camps in the State, as long as the clubs follow the appropriate health protocols.

Blue Ribbon Commission Appointments

The Governor today announced the members of the State’s Blue-Ribbon Commission focused on improving telehealth and broadband access. The Blue-Ribbon Commission is being chaired by Eric Schmidt, former CEO and Executive Chairman of Google and founder of Schmidt Futures. Additional Commission members are below:

  • Richard Parsons – Chair, Rockefeller Foundation
  • Darren Walker – President, Ford Foundation
  • Dennis Rivera – Former Chair, SEIU healthcare
  • Plinio Ayala – President/CEO, Per Scholas
  • Charles Phillips – Chair/Former CEO, Infor
  • Sid Mukherjee – Physician/Author, Assistant Professor at Columbia
  • Jane Rosenthal – Co-founder/CEO/Executive Chair, Tribeca Film Festival 
  • Dr. Toyin Ajayi – Chief Health Officer & Co-founder, CityblockHealth
  • Elizabeth Alexander – President, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
  • Martha Pollack – President, Cornell University
  • Steven Koonin – Director, NYU Center for Urban Science and Progress
  • Satish K. Tripathi – President, SUNY Buffalo
  • Hamdi Ulukaya – Founder/Chairman/CEO, Chobani
  • Maurie McInnis – Incoming President, SUNY Stony Brook 
  • Ginni Rometty – Executive Chair, IBM

New York State COVID-19 Numbers

Thankfully, we continue to remain on the far side of the COVID-19 plateau. That said, the number of deaths in the State has increased by 109 since yesterday.

The Wrap Up – May 23, 2020

Eased Restrictions on Gatherings

Pursuant to Executive Order 202.33, issued by Governor Cuomo last night, New York State now is permitting any non-essential gathering of ten or less individuals, for any lawful purpose or reason, provided that people adhere to the social distancing protocols and cleaning and disinfection protocols required by the NYS Department of Health.  This directive is in effect through June 21.

Update on Mid-Hudson and Long Island Regional Reopenings

The Mid-Hudson region has met the criteria for the decline in number of COVID-19 deaths.  If this region hits its benchmark for contact tracing capacity, it could begin Phase 1 of the State’s reopening process on Tuesday, May 26. 

The Governor today stated that Long Island could begin its Phase 1 reopening on Wednesday, May 27, if its number of COVID-19 deaths continues to decrease and its contact tracing requirement is met.

Expanding Testing Capacity

To continue expanding its diagnostic testing capacity, the State is partnering with Advantage Care Physicians to establish 15 new testing sites at downstate medical centers, including testing centers in low-income and minority communities.  Testing locations can be found at the following site: coronavirus.health.ny.gov.

New York State COVID-19 Numbers

Thankfully, we continue to remain on the far side of the COVID-19 plateau. That said, the number of deaths in the State has increased by 84 since yesterday.