Coronavirus Update: Cuomo Issues Remote Work Policy; States Order Indoor Portions of Facilities to Close

Update: Suffolk County said the number of coronavirus cases in Huntington is now 43, of 152 in the county.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the governors of three other states have ordered indoor portions of retail shopping malls, amusement parks and bowling alleys in the four states to close by 8 PM Thursday.

Pennsylvania has joined with the tri-state governors in a regional approach to fighting the coronavirus.

“We are doing everything we can as states to reduce density and contain the spread of the virus,” Cuomo said. “It is critical that we remain on the same page as our neighboring states, and so far we are the only region in the country partnering to create uniform, regional density reduction policies that prevent ‘state shopping.’ We will continue working together to update our regulations and guidance as the situation evolves while keeping a consistent standard across the region.”

 Cuomo announced Wednesday that  the USNS Comfort will be deployed to New York Harbor and is expected to arrive in April. The 1,000-bed hospital ship has 12 fully equipped operating rooms and is expected to greatly increase the ability to deal with a surge of patients in need of treatment for the coronavirus epidemic.

He is also meeting with leadership of the Army Corps of Engineers to discuss ways to increase hospital capacity in New York.

Effective Friday, under an executive order, non-essential businesses will be asked to  implement work-from-home policies. Businesses that rely on in-office personnel must decrease their in-office workforce by 50 percent. The executive order exempts essential service industries, including shipping, media, warehousing, grocery and food production, pharmacies, healthcare providers, utilities, banks and related financial institutions, and other industries critical to the supply chain. 

In addition, Pennsylvania has joined New York, Connecticut and New Jersey regional fight against the virus.

 In other coronavirus news:

      • Testing is free for all eligible New Yorkers as ordered by a health care provider. Contact the Suffolk County Department of Health with questions: Phone: 631-854-0000 Fax: 631-854-0108.
      • The Huntington Planning Board and Zoning Board of Appeals meetings, including all public hearings have been postponed until further notice because of the coronavirus  epidemic. Huntington Town Hall and all Town facilities were closed to the public starting Monday, and until further notice, with the exception of Crab Meadow Golf Course, Dix Hills Golf Course, and town parks and playground.
      • The federal government announced that it is pushing back the April 15 deadline to pay taxes.

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