Upset by “rampant” violations of New York’s pandemic-fighting restrictions, Gov. Andrew Cuomo threatened Sunday to pull liquor licenses of scofflaw restaurants and even reinstate closings in areas where local governments fail to enforce rules.
Manhattan and Long Island’s tony Hamptons were singled out as problem areas by Gov. Cuomo, who said the state has received 25,000 complaints of re-opening violations. He said the violations endanger the state’s fragile progress in the fight against the coronavirus as it slowly relaxes restrictions enacted in March.
“We are not kidding around with this. You’re talking about jeopardizing people’s lives,” Cuomo said at his daily briefing.
The warning comes a day after the Democratic governor reacted sternly to a short Twitter video from New York City of young people enjoying a warm day packed tightly on a city street, many without masks. However, the governor has allowed the protests to continue throughout the state and did not threaten to put and end to them despite the fact that they did not practice social distancing to noticeable degree.
New York officials are trying to avoid the fate of states seeing a surge in new cases after re-opening. New York’s coronavirus-related hospitalizations are declining and the state recorded 23 deaths Saturday, the lowest one-day coronavirus death toll since the early days of the crisis.
Cuomo made clear there could be consequences for localities where police fail to enforce social distancing and other pandemic-related rules.
“Before I reverse a statewide position, I’ll tell you what I’m going to do,” he said. “I’m going to reverse it in those areas that are not in compliance with the rules.”
Cuomo said the state is prepared to take action against individuals who violate open container laws as well as restaurants and bars violating terms of their licenses.
The governor also announced that low-risk youth sports for regions in phase three of reopening can begin on July 6th with up to two spectators allowed per child.
Updated Sunday, June 14, 2020 at 5:35 pm low risk sports allowed with some spectators