ALBANY, N.Y. (WIVB/WSYR) — As the phased reopening process continues in many regions of New York, horse racing tracks statewide will be able to open—without fans—as of June 1 under a specific set of guidelines, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced during a Saturday morning press conference. Take a look at the slides from Cuomo’s briefing:
The state will issue guidance on how the tracks can safely open in the upcoming week.
Watkins Glen International Racetrack will also be able to open, without fans, on June 1. NASCAR still plans to hold its annual Go Bowling at the Glen event from August 14 to 16.
The governor added that the state is now starting to look for economic activities that can be done without crowds and gatherings. He says large gatherings pose the biggest threat to COVID-19 spreading.
“The numbers have been steadily decreasing, and we’re now right about where we were when we started. But we want to make sure we don’t go back to the hell that we’ve gone through,” Cuomo says. “We have a smart phased reopening plan that has been reviewed by experts, and half of the state is in the process of reopening.”
COVID-19 data in NYS
Gov. Cuomo says that some of the new coronavirus cases are coming from people who are not working and who are staying at home. State health officials say they don’t know how or where those people became infected.
The number of people hospitalized due to COVID-19 continues to decline, but over 400 people were still admitted to a hospital in the state on Friday.
Tragically, COVID-19 claimed the lives of 157 more New Yorkers on Friday, down from a high of over 500 per day during the apex. Regarding the number of deaths, Governor Cuomo said, “That number has been stubborn.”
Of the 157 deaths reported on Friday, 105 were from hospitals and 52 were from nursing homes.
After the governor’s opening remarks on Saturday, a question was asked if nursing home data should be included in the overall data in New York State because the reporter claimed nursing homes are their own isolated situations. Governor Cuomo responded with, “To the extent we’re saying to hospitals, ‘You should keep nursing home patients, and not discharge them to nursing homes.’ They’re saying that’s artificially increasing the hospitalization rate. I get the point… so we’re having those conversations now. We don’t have a decision, but we’re having those conversations.”
As of Saturday morning, there are 2,419 additional cases of coronavirus, bringing the statewide total to 348,232 confirmed cases in New York State.
Cuomo on the Heroes Act
Also during his press conference, the governor called on the Senate to pass the $3 trillion coronavirus relief bill that the House passed Friday night.
The Heroes Act includes $500 billion for states and $375 billion for locals, as well as Medicaid funding, increased SNAP assistance, FEMA federal assistance, funding for testing, and the repeal of SALT to help states affected by COVID-19.
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