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Cuomo allowing New York movie theaters to reopen

Sat, Oct 17th 2020 12:05 pm

Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Saturday said he would allow certain movie theaters to open at 25% capacity next Friday, Oct. 23. Fifty people per screen will be permitted in certain regions.

This is outside of New York City and the “red zone” micro-cluster areas with a higher rate of the coronavirus.

Additional details:

Image courtesy of the Office of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo

A press release from the governor’s office later in the day reiterated the chart points. It said:

Theaters can only open outside of New York City in counties that have COVID-19 positivity rates of less than 2% on a 14-day average and do not have any cluster zones. Theaters will be subject to rigorous state guidance and enforcement.

State guidance on the reopening of theaters includes the following conditions:

  • Masks will be required at all times except when seated and eating or drinking.
  • Assigned seating will be required in all theaters.
  • Social distancing between parties will be required at all times.
  • Additional staffing will be required to control occupancy, traffic and seating to ensure compliance.
  • Enhanced air filtration, ventilation and purification standards must be met by theaters.

Theaters cannot reopen in the following counties:

  • Allegany
  • Broome
  • Cattaraugus
  • Chautauqua
  • Chemung
  • Cortland
  • Greene
  • Orange
  • Rockland
  • Schuyler
  • Steuben
  • Tioga

The National Association of Theater Owners of New York State released a statement that read, "We are exceptionally pleased that Gov. Cuomo has allowed for movie theaters in New York state to begin to reopen. As theaters have demonstrated in 48 states so far, the moviegoing experience can be enjoyed safely with strict guidelines and protocols in place for health and safety under our industry's CinemaSafe plan. As parts of the state reopen theaters starting this Friday, it is our hope that theaters in New York City follow suit shortly thereafter. We look forward to seeing moviegoers return to the big screen here in the Empire State next week."

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