Orange County Partnership - News

  • Dr. Kristine M. Young - SUNY Orange President

Gov. Cuomo to Reopen Economy after May 15; OCC’s Young Named to Board to Help Restart Economy

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has established a 100-member NY Forward Reopening Advisory Board that will provide input on how, where and when the state will begin lifting COVID-19 business restrictions. 

Among the appointees announced by the governor earlier this week was SUNY Orange President Dr. Kristine M. Young.

"We've come up with a phased plan to re-open New York so every region in the state has the same opening template as we begin this process," Gov. Cuomo said. “We have to be smart about this—emotions can't drive our re-opening process—and we've come up with factual data points that each region must monitor as they begin to re-open. We've also created a New York Forward Re-Opening Advisory Board made up of business, academic, community and civic leaders from across the state to help guide this process and ensure businesses are following the necessary guidelines to preserve public health as we work towards a new normal.”

The governor has also indicated that he will begin the reopening process in Central New York after May 15 with certain segments of the upstate construction and manufacturing sectors. The governor said those two industries that are part of the phase one reopening will represent 46,000 employees that will go back to work in Central New York.

Phase two will open certain industries based on priority and risk level. Businesses considered "more essential" with inherent low risks of infection in the workplace and to customers will be prioritized, followed by other businesses considered "less essential" or those that present a higher risk of infection spread. 

He also noted that each business and industry eligible for reopening must have a plan to protect employees and consumers, make the physical work space safer and implement processes that lower risk of infection in the business.

Among the other criteria the governor cited included a provision that to maintain the phased re-opening plan, each region must have at least 30% of hospital beds and ICU beds available after elective surgeries resume. Other requirements include:

  • Regions must implement a testing regimen that prioritizes symptomatic persons and individuals who came into contact with a known COVID-positive person, and conducts frequent tests of frontline and essential workers. 

  • Regions must also maintain an appropriate number of testing sites to accommodate its population and must fully advertise where and how people can get tested. The region must also use the collected data to track and trace the spread of the virus.

  • There must be at least 30 contact tracers for every 100,000 people. The region must also monitor the regional infection rate throughout the re-opening plan.

  • Regions must present plans to have rooms available for people who test positive for COVID-19 and who cannot self-isolate.

  • Regions must coordinate the re-opening of schools, transportation systems, testing and tracing with other surrounding regions.

  • Each region must appoint an oversight institution as its control room to monitor regional indicators during the phased re-opening, including hospital capacity, rate of infection, PPE burn rate and businesses.

  • Regions must continue to ensure protections are in place for essential workers.

Among the 100 appointees to the advisory board include: Maria Imperial, CEO, YWCA White Plains & Central Westchester; Ajay Banga, CEO, MasterCard; Vijay Dandapani, President & CEO, Hotel Association of NYC; Jonathan Gray, President & COO, Blackstone Group; Ted Potrikus, President & CEO, Retail Council of New York State; Ken Raske, President, Greater NY Hospital Association; Scott Rechler, CEO & Chairman, RXR Realty; Bill Rudin, Rudin Management Company; Leonard Schleifer, CEO, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals; Lisa Sorinm, President, Bronx Chamber of Commerce; Rob Speyer, President & CEO, Tishman Speyer; Kathy Wylde, President & CEO, Partnership for NYC and Lourdes Zapata, President & CEO at South Bronx Overall Economic Development Corp.