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Cuomo: State beaches in NY, NJ, CT, DE reopening with restrictions in time for Memorial Day

State and municipal beaches throughout the region will be allowed to open the Friday before the holiday, but with limits, Gov. Cuomo said.

News 12 Staff

May 15, 2020, 3:13 PM

Updated 1,522 days ago

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(AP) - After two months of strict limits on business and social distancing, Gov. Andrew Cuomo welcomed the first loosening of restrictions in many parts of the state Friday and announced that beaches would be allowed to open in time for the Memorial Day weekend.
State and municipal beaches throughout the state will be allowed to open the Friday before the holiday, but with limits, the Democrat said.
Capacity will be limited to no more than 50 percent of normal, with parking limited to trim crowds. Group activities will not be allowed. Picnic areas and playgrounds will stay closed. Employees need to wear masks.
It will be up to local governments, Cuomo said, to decide whether to allow municipal beaches to reopen. If they do, they must follow the state’s rules.
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“If there is a problem, and the locals do not enforce those regulations, we will close those beaches,” Cuomo said.
Beaches in New Jersey and Connecticut will also be open for the holiday weekend, and Cuomo said part of the rationale for reopening was to prevent New Yorkers from flocking to those states as the weather warms.
Starting Friday, construction and manufacturing businesses will reopen in many rural parts of New York and some upstate cities. Retail businesses can open, too, but only for goods to be picked up quickly, not for in-store shopping.
Cuomo cautioned, though, that employers need to protect workers by supplying masks and limiting congregation of workers. And he said the limited steps the state is taking to reopen would be reversed immediately if infection rates start to rise.
“Watch what happens to the infection rate, testing rate, hospitalization rate. If those numbers start to move, slow down on the activity level.”
The coronavirus killed 132 New Yorkers on Thursday, Cuomo said.
PHOTOS: Coronavirus heroes
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BRIEFING NOTES:
  • 132 New Yorkers died on Thursday due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Gov. Cuomo: "While cases are increasing across the country, the number of cases in New York are actually going down."
  • Gov. Cuomo says 5 regions out of the 10 in New York will begin reopening today. "They are the regions that meet the numerical criteria. There's no politics to this judgement."
  • Gov. Cuomo says NY on Pause is being extended to May 28 for regions that aren't opening today.
  • Gov. Cuomo says state beaches will open on the Friday before Memorial Day weekend with strict precautions.
  • Gov. Cuomo on next stimulus bill: "Never underestimate a politician's instinct for self-survival." He says he believes Washington will pass a bill that will prop up states with funds.
 PHOTOS: Countries around the world cope with COVID-19
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