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New Yorkers confused as Gov. Cuomo extends NY Pause and stay-at-home orders to seemingly contradictory dates

New Yorkers confused as Gov. Cuomo extends NY Pause and stay-at-home orders to seemingly contradictory dates

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has extended the state’s “NY Pause” economic shutdown until the end of May while stretching the stay-at-home order halfway into June, confusing residents already chafing under extended lockdown.

With both measures set to expire at midnight and five of the state’s 10 economic regions entering the first phase of reopening, Cuomo poured cold water on any premature celebration by downstate residents on Friday, extending both Covid-19 executive orders by several weeks.

For those regions that haven’t met the governor’s stated criteria involving a decrease in hospital admissions, testing numbers, and contact-tracing capabilities, the economic shutdown order has been extended to May 28, while the shelter-in-place order has been extended through June 13.

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Regions that meet the governor’s criteria, however, can start reopening “immediately,” he said – without having to wait until the end of the month. Cuomo has already outlined a four-phase reopening process beginning with resuming operations in construction, manufacturing, agriculture, and a handful of other industries.

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One of the reasons for the disparity in dates was to permit the state’s beaches – which have been closed since the shutdown began – to open for Memorial Day weekend. While Cuomo expressed reservations about doing so, he explained New Yorkers deprived of their own state’s beaches would just flood into New Jersey and Connecticut. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, however, has declared the city’s beaches will stay closed no matter what – an order city residents have already ignored on warm weekends.

But many New Yorkers were understandably confused…

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Some tried to make the best of a rapidly-disappearing summer, but others suspected there was something more to the byzantine rules than trying to save lives.

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New York is the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic, with upwards of 22,300 deaths attributed to the virus as of Friday. Over 15,000 of those were located in New York City, which is unlikely to exit lockdown before mid-June under Cuomo’s metrics. While some have praised the governor’s cautious approach to reopening the state, others have taken him to task for his controversial policy of ordering nursing homes to accept Covid-19-positive patients and his decision to put unelected billionaires like former Microsoft CEO Bill Gates and former Google executive Eric Schmidt in charge of rebuilding the state’s healthcare and education industries post-pandemic.

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New Yorkers confused as Gov. Cuomo extends NY Pause and stay-at-home orders to seemingly contradictory dates

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