ALBANY, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo talked about the possibility of reopening schools and businesses during his daily COVID-19 press conference on Saturday, but he said there is still not enough information to determine a date of when organizations could reopen their doors.
The death toll in New York State continues to climb, with COVID-19 now taking the lives of 8,627 New Yorkers. 783 new deaths were announced on Saturday, it is the fifth day in a row New York has surpassed 700 deaths in a single day.
Governor Cuomo said the data shows New York is starting to flatten the curve, and the state is at a plateau.
According to Johns Hopkins University, nearly 175,000 people are infected with COVID-19 in New York State.
The governor acknowledged more people are being admitted to the hospital, but he said it is happening at a slower rate. Governor Cuomo also said the number of intubations across the state is decreasing.
Despite the news that the curve may be flattening, Governor Cuomo did not offer any information as to when New York could see its schools and businesses reopen.
Rumors were circulating that New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio closed all New York City schools for the rest of the school year, but Governor Cuomo denied those rumors, and said that he has the authority to close schools, not Mayor de Blasio.
Cuomo said he does not have enough information to determine when New York should reopen schools or businesses and said the decision has to be coordinated with the entire metropolitan area.
According to the governor, he is sticking to the facts when making decisions, and will not let emotions or politics get involved. He acknowledged that this is the most important time for government in his lifetime.
“This is a time where our actions will literally determine life and death,” Cuomo said. “I’ve been in government most of my adult life on many levels through many circumstances. This is, no doubt, the most important period for government in my lifetime.”
The governor referenced other countries who have been ahead of New York in the coronavirus process, and warned if New York does not make the right decisions, a second wave of COVID-19 could infect New Yorkers.
Towards the end of the press conference the question was asked if nurses and doctors are receiving enough PPE. Governor Cuomo said the state has fulfilled every request hospitals have made for PPE, and he said if nurses and doctors are not receiving enough PPE there is disconnect between the hospital administrator and their employees.
The governor also refuted rumors that he could replace Joe Biden on the democratic presidential ticket.
“That is on one hand flattering, on the other hand it is irrelevant,” Cuomo said. “I have no political agenda, period. I’m not running for president. I’m not running for vice president. I’m not running anywhere. I’m not going to Washington. I’m staying right here.”
At his press conference, Governor Cuomo also referenced a Winston Churchill quote and said New York State may be flattening the curve, but the battle with COVID-19 is not close to being over.
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