Jun 18, 2020
As you are well aware by now as we reopen, we are carefully monitoring the data. While the numbers across the state have been consistently good, we noticed a sign of caution in Central New York this week when then numbers went up from .6 percent positive to 1.3 to 1.4 percent. What happened?
That's where the contact tracing program comes into play. We traced the positives, which led us to an apple packaging plant in Oswego, where there is a cluster of cases — about 34 positives in that one business. That's both bad and good news. The bad news is that we saw an increase in cases but the good news is that we traced the numbers, identified the positives and can now take action to reduce the spread. This is one example of why tracing is needed and is so effective.
1. Businesses that violate health guidelines can face the immediate loss of their liquor license or a shutdown order. I issued an Executive Order strengthening state enforcement during the phased reopening to protect New Yorkers and ensure businesses comply. I will also issue an Executive Order to expand the enforcement areas of the State Liquor Authority by giving bars responsibility for the sidewalk/area in front of their establishments.
2. A final decision on New York City entering Phase 2 this Monday is expected to come tomorrow. Business guidance for Phase 2 of the state's reopening plan is available here.
3. The State will issue guidance to colleges and universities to allow some in-person instruction and on-campus housing for the fall semester. Campuses must develop a plan which meets the guidance, and file it with the State.
4. The State again maintained the lowest percentage of positive COVID-19 tests yesterday since the pandemic began. Out of the 68,541 tests conducted in New York State yesterday, only 618, or 0.90 percent, were positive.
5. The total number of COVID hospitalizations continues to hit record lows. Total hospitalizations fell to 1,358, from 1,479. Sadly, 29 New Yorkers passed away yesterday due to COVID-19. Our thoughts are with their families.