Hudson Valley to begin Phase I re-opening

Posted 5/23/20

As portions of New York State have begun re-opening, some of the region’s elected officials have called on Governor Andrew Cuomo to include the Hudson Valley in the re-opening …

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Hudson Valley to begin Phase I re-opening

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Amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo Saturday announced that the Mid-Hudson Valley is on track to meet all seven metrics required to begin phase one of the state's regional phased reopening plan starting Tuesday, May 26th, joining the Capital Region, Western New York, Central New York, North Country, Finger Lakes, Southern Tier and Mohawk Valley Regions.

"The numbers are going down every day and we're making real progress to stop the spread of this virus, and now we're focusing on reopening," Cuomo said. "Reopening has been different in different regions all across the state, but each region has to meet the same criteria to reopen and we are keeping New Yorkers informed with where each region stands. We don't want a region to reopen before its ready, and the Mid-Hudson Valley Region has now met all the criteria necessary to begin reopening on Tuesday. This has been a tough situation, but New Yorkers are tough and we've shown how tough we really are here."

The Mid-Hudson Valley has now identified enough contact tracers to meet the state's guidelines, and the tracers are being trained in preparation for the Mid-Hudson Valley entering phase one, which includes construction; manufacturing and wholesale supply chain; retail for curbside pickup and drop-off or in-store pickup; and agriculture, forestry and fishing

“Last night I sent a letter to Governor Cuomo requesting that we reopen the Hudson Valley into Phase 1,” Orange County Executive Steven Neuhaus reported Saturday morning. “ We have reached a 36-day decline in hospitalizations. Our nurses, doctors, and all medical staff are highly trained and have been doing an outstanding job. Further, we have met testing capacity, and numerous other metrics.

“Walmart and other big box stores have been open throughout this crisis. Our local main street businesses are just as valuable. There are other inconsistencies, where hundreds of workers can build ‘affordable housing’while other contractors in the same industry are forced to stay home on unemployment.

“I believe we can all meet whichever COVID-19 standards need to be in place in order to have a safe work environment.

It is critical that people continue social distancing and wear face coverings. This is not a sign this pandemic is over. We must be vigilant or our numbers can go back up.”

According to the governor’s plan, the loosening of restrictions in New York will be considered on a regional basis, based on the following criteria. These criteria are designed to allow phased reopenings to begin in each region only if:

Assemblyman Colin J. Schmitt (R,C,I-New Windsor) concurred with Neuhaus.

“The COVID-19 health crisis has certainly been unprecedented and precautions taken have saved lives," Schmitt said. "Using the best information we have we must move forward into the long term economic and community recovery.”

"This is the first step in building back our economy and building back stronger while continuing to protect the public’s health," said State Senator James Skoufis (D-Woodbury). "As we move forward, it’s important that we all continue to respect CDC guidelines, including social distancing, and wearing a mask in public when we can’t be socially distant.

Many state parks and beaches are open as of Memorial Day Weekend but all have restrictions. Lake Minnewaska and Sam's Point are experiencing extensive congestion on good-weather days and both sites are subject to intermittent closures as parking lots reach capacity. Please respect our neighbors and surrounding communities: DO NOT park on adjacent roadway shoulders. For alternative destinations search parks.ny.gov and and dec.ny.gov. 

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