ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — In his second presentation of the State of the State address, Governor Andrew Cuomo discussed a reopening of the economy and the arts. And, with so many people working and learning remotely, internet affordability was a big focus. The Governor also talked about expanding rapid testing sites.
“We have always understood the COVID reality, that the options for the economy are not to fully open or fully close, but rather to strike a new model of balance where we use science and technology to reopen the economy intelligently,” the Governor said.
The Governor said, until the vaccine is available for the masses, testing will be key. He touted a model used to allow nearly 7,000 fans into Bills Stadium over the weekend for a playoff game after they were tested.
He said rapid testing could be used in the future so that people could go get a test hours before “patronizing a business or engaging in a social activity.”
“We will open hundreds of these new pop-up rapid testing sites statewide to bring this effort to scale,” the Governor said.
Some say nursing homes should be kept in mind when it comes to rapid testing as well.
“One of my first thoughts were back to the nursing homes and senior living facilities. We still have families that are not getting in to see their loved ones, and I absolutely believe that they need to do that and they need to be top on the priority of getting that done,” said Republican Assemblymember Brian Manktelow.
And, as many New Yorkers continue to use internet at home for work and school, the Governor said affordability is another priority.
“I propose a first in the nation mandate that internet service providers recognize their public responsibility and offer $15 per month high speed internet service to all low-income households,” said the Governor.
“I’m in favor of getting broadband to everybody. We’ve got pockets of isolation all over my district. But it needs to be done smartly and it needs to be done by the free market,” said Republican Assemblymember Robert Smullen.
Wednesday, the Governor is expected to continue with his third State of the State presentation. That will be on green energy.