Coronavirus restrictions put in place in Port Chester as cases increase
New restrictions are now in place on businesses and schools in yellow zone Port Chester.
Coronavirus restrictions are in place as the number of cases continues to rise, with the village reporting roughly 40 more active cases in the past week.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo made the announcement Friday afternoon in a news briefing.
Port Chester is the first municipality in Westchester County that is facing coronavirus restrictions since cases have gone back up.
County Executive George Latimer says this is a stark reminder that the pandemic is still a very real risk.
"It's cautionary. We're not shutting things down, but we're seeing things reach a level that is not normal and is not acceptable level, so be on your toes now that we need to start to respond to this," he said.
Port Chester is a majority-minority village where more than 60% of the population speaks Spanish. That's why Mayor Rich Falanka says the village is working on nailing down outreach efforts like bilingual robo calls.
"The police department will be going out to businesses and restaurants, and hopefully we'll have some fliers for tomorrow," Falanka said. "That's what we're working on to provide to the businesses, to make them aware of the regulations."
Nothing will shut down, but being in the yellow zone will mean: only four to a table for indoor dining; mass gatherings capacities shrink from 50 to 25 people max; houses of worship are capped at 50%; and schools will have to test 20% of staff and students each week for in-person learning.
Latimer says these rules are in effect immediately.
Testing is also expanding thanks to the state and county health departments. The village mayor says they are also committing to outreach in the community to make them aware of the situation.