Gov. Cuomo calls on local government to enforce social distancing

Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday doubled down on his calls for local elected officials including New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio to keep the coronavirus on the ropes.

Cuomo on Sunday had threatened to reinstate shutdowns of Manhattan and The Hamptons, on eastern Long Island, unless they cracked down on violations of social-distancing and other pandemic precautions, drawing pushback from a de Blasio spokeswoman.

“I don’t know what he said,” Cuomo responded when asked during a Monday press briefing about the statement made on behalf of Hizzoner. “Look at the facts. Look at our viral infection rate. Look at the other 22 states [where the virus is on the rise], and you don’t want to be one of those other 22 states.

“Do your job, local government!”

Cuomo called for leaders including de Blasio to step up as Hizzoner sat on the sidelines Monday with a stomach bug.

Speaking at a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the pedestrian and bike path on the Mario Cuomo Bridge in Tarrytown, the governor recounted how his office had received some 25,000 complaints about various coronavirus infractions.

A significant number of the gripes came from Manhattan and The Hamptons, and a few were texted directly to Cuomo, he said.

“So I made a few phone calls and said to restaurant owners, bar owners, what are you doing?” Cuomo said. “We have the guidelines. I’m looking at a picture of your establishment taken 25 minutes ago, and people are violating everything, everything. No masks, no social distancing.

“Look, the state is going to enforce the rules.”

Cuomo said that most New Yorkers haven’t taken their eye off the ball, and don’t want those who have to ruin it.

“The people of the state know what they did,” he said. “They know the sacrifice they made over 106 days to get that virus down.

“And they don’t want anyone’s irresponsibility to jeopardize that.”

As Cuomo urged the downstate areas to hang tough, he announced that regions elsewhere in the state are continuing to reap the benefits.

Western New York has been cleared to enter the third phase of the state’s reopening plan on Tuesday, while the Capital Region will follow suit on Wednesday.

That phase includes the reopening of restaurants, and, Cuomo said Monday, gatherings of up to 25 people.

As of Monday, 1,608 people were hospitalized with the coronavirus statewide, the lowest mark since March 20.

Twenty-five New Yorkers succumbed to the bug in the 24-hour period ending at midnight Monday, nearly equaling the low of 23 reported in the period prior.

All told, 24,579 people have been confirmed to have died from the coronavirus statewide.


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