Cuomo: New York City on track to start reopening week of June 8

Cuomo: New York City on track to start reopening week of June 8
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New York City is on track to start reopening the week of June 8, New York Gov. Andrew CuomoAndrew CuomoEMILY's List announces early endorsement of Hochul Hochul jumps out to early lead in NY governor's primary: poll De Blasio privately says he plans to run for New York governor: report MORE (D) announced on Friday.

Cuomo, joined by video link by Mayor Bill de BlasioBill de BlasioEMILY's List announces early endorsement of Hochul More than 200 women, transgender inmates to be transferred from Rikers Island Achieving equity through mediocrity: Why elimination of gifted programs should worry us all MORE (D) in a show of unity between two sometime rivals, said that the metrics for New York City are looking better, but still cautioned that the risk is not over.

"This is not 'Happy days are here again, it's over," Cuomo said, "We have to be smart."

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New York City, once by far the epicenter of the coronavirus crisis in the United States, has seen significant improvement in recent weeks.

De Blasio said that the city had 61 new hospitalizations for coronavirus in the last day, well below the goal of under 200 hospitalizations.

The positivity rate for tests is down to 5 percent in the last day, De Blasio added.

Still, reopening in New York is planned in phases, and the first phase does not have dramatic changes. It would allow some businesses like manufacturing to reopen, and nonessential retailers to open for pick-ups.

Cuomo said about 400,000 people would return to work in phase one.

"You start to open gradually," he said.

In addition, Cuomo said that five less-populated regions in upstate New York can now move into the second phase, given the progress seen there. 
 
"People have been smart and you haven't seen the spike," Cuomo said. 
 
Phase two allows for more significant changes, like barber shops reopening for appointments only and retail stores opening at 50 percent occupancy. The governor also urged people to wear masks when going to the store and noted that store owners can refuse entry to people not wearing masks. 
 
In reopening New York City, Cuomo said officials need to be careful and watch the data closely. 
 
"You don't go from zero to 60 miles an hour, you go from zero to 20 miles an hour," he said. 
 
"And then if you have to adjust, adjust," he added. 
 
Updated at 1:55 p.m.