CORONAVIRUS IN NY STATE: Deaths surpass 16,000; Cuomo decision on extending 'NY Pause' restrictions coming in a week

1010 WINS Newsroom
April 24, 2020 - 11:41 am

    NEW YORK (1010 WINS) -- Gov. Andrew Cuomo reported Friday that New York state's coronavirus death toll had surpassed 16,000, and he said a decision on whether to extend restrictions under the "NY Pause" order will come in about a week.

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    The governor said 422 more people had died from the virus, bringing the death toll to 16,162.

    The number of deaths is the lowest number reported in New York since March 31, when 391 deaths were recorded.

    “Again, this is at an unimaginable level, and it’s dropping somewhat. But it’s still devastating news,” the governor said.

    The net change in hospitalizations and intubations were down and "all the evidence suggests were on the downside of the curve," Cuomo said.

    He said the number of new infections continues to be "basically flat" and he wants it to drop faster.

    A total of 1,296 people were hospitalized with the virus Thursday, he said. At least 263,460 people have been infected with the virus statewide.

    Cuomo said he'll make a decision on whether to extend his "NY Pause" order, which is currently in place through May 15, in "about one week."

    "So we give people some notice," Cuomo said.

    The decision will impact when nonessential businesses and schools reopen.

    Cuomo also announced he's issuing an executive order to ensure every New Yorker receive a postage-paid application for an absentee ballot so people can vote from home for the June 23 primary. The polls will remain open, he said.

    "We're saying you have two options: You can go to the polls or you can vote absentee," Cuomo said.

    The governor also said talks are ongoing about what the state will do when the moratorium on evictions ends. Hours earlier, de Blasio called on the state to enact a number of measures to protect tenants.

    Mentioning talk of a potential second wave of the virus, the governor said, "for all we know it's only halftime." He said the the virus will "spike fast and furious" if "we rush back to business as usual."

    The governor also talked about the spread of the virus earlier this winter and how everyone was caught off guard.

    Cuomo said research shows the virus was spreading in Italy in February and that it's likely 28,000 cases were already in the U.S. at that time, with 10,000 alone in New York state.

    He said 13,000 flights from Europe landed in New York and New Jersey between January and March carrying some 2.2 million passengers.

    "We closed the front door with the China ban, which was right, even in retrospect, but we left the back door open," Cuomo said.

    "This was too little, too late," he said. "Let's find out what happened so it doesn't happen again. And it will happen again. Bank on it."

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