Cuomo: New York State ‘Is Closed Unless We Say Otherwise’ and That Includes Schools
Gov. Andrew Cuomo says New York continues to be on the COVID-19 descent, but it could be weeks or months before its all over.
Hospitalizations and the number of new people entering the hospitals with COVID-19 are basically flat, Cuomo noted during his COVID-19 briefing on Monday.
He said it's unclear how long it will take for the cases to come down in order to reopen.
Cuomo says the next question is how long is the descent and how steep is the descent. The answer is "no one knows." He says some say it could be "weeks, others months."
Cuomo announced 478 New Yorkers died on Sunday from COVID-19, a continued decline from previous days, but now over 18,000 New Yorkers have died from the virus.
Cuomo said his number one concern each day is to make sure the infection rate doesn't go up.
Activity will increase as the weather gets better and cabin fever increases, he said.
"There's only so long you can say to people, stay inside and lock the door," Cuomo said.
Cuomo noted when the activity rate increase the infection rate of the virus will also increase.
"To our local government officials, the state rule is everything is closed," Cuomo said. "Everything is closed unless we say otherwise."
He added cooperation is key because beaches, businesses, schools, public facilities, parades and concerts will be a magnet for people if they are open. He says reopening everything must be coordinated.
If people make smart decisions over the next two weeks it will lead to a much better outcome than if New Yorkers make poor decisions over the next two weeks, according to Cuomo.
Cuomo added schools, hospitals and local governments will see across-the-board 20 percent cuts without federal funding.
"This is the worst time to do this," Cuomo noted.
Cuomo also proposed federal hazard pay for frontline workers.
"They are the ones carrying us through this crisis and this crisis isn't over," he said. "Pay them a 50 percent bonus. They are carrying us on their backs through this crisis."