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Metro Creative Connection

Cuomo: New York ending COVID-19 state disaster emergency

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Thu, Jun 24th 2021 08:35 am

Statewide 7-day average positivity is 0.36%, a record low for 26 consecutive days; has declined for 79 consecutive days

Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday announced New York will end the state disaster emergency declared March 7, 2020, to fight COVID-19. His team said, “Given New York's dramatic progress against COVID-19, with the success in vaccination rates, and declining hospitalization and positivity statewide, the state of emergency will expire after Thursday, June 24.”

Federal CDC guidance will remain in effect, which includes masks for unvaccinated individuals, as well as all riders on public transit and in certain settings, such as health care, nursing homes, correctional facilities and homeless shelters. State and local government health departments will still be able to ensure mask rules and other health precautions are adhered to in those settings.

A press release stated, “Since March of 2020, a variety of actions had been taken by executive order to assist in the rapid response to the pandemic by state agencies, local governments, hospitals and businesses by both temporarily suspending or modifying laws as well as utilizing temporary directives. Hospitals were able to add space and staffing, meetings were authorized to occur virtually, and various deadlines were extended to accommodate a changed landscape.”

Cuomo said, "New York went from one of the worst infection rates to the lowest infection rate in the country, and it was all because of the efforts of New Yorkers who were smart, united and did what they needed to do throughout this entire pandemic. Now we're starting to write a new chapter for a post-COVID New York – the state disaster emergency is ending and we can focus on reimaging, rebuilding and renewing our state. This doesn't mean COVID is gone – we still have to get more New Yorkers vaccinated – but we are getting back on track and starting to live life once again."

Senate Republican Leader Rob Ortt said, “Today’s news that the New York governor’s emergency executive powers will finally be lifted is long overdue news. The progress we’ve made wouldn’t have been possible without thousands of frontline workers, business owners and everyday New Yorkers who sacrificed so much over the past year.

“Now it is time for us to turn our undivided attention to the economic recovery and the rising crime wave devastating major metro areas all across the state. As elected officials, we must lead by example. Government officials should finally resume normal operations, including making themselves available to the public and press.

“We must do better to restore trust in our government, and that begins by making ourselves more accessible and accountable as state leaders.”

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