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Cuomo: COVID-19 plan for New York State will be adjusted Friday

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he consulted with international experts and will announce new factors in state's plan on Friday.

NEW YORK — New York State has not released data about the percent of positive tests in any of the micro-cluster color zones since Sunday. 

Without that data, it's hard to know if any of the zones are doing better or worse and whether restrictions could be lifted or added.

That also leaves a lot of business owners in limbo, especially those who were forced to close.

Earlier this week, 2 On Your Side spoke with business owners frustrated that their businesses closed under Orange Zone restrictions.

Governor Cuomo had previously said personal care services like gyms and salons are high-risk for spread of COVID-19, but on Monday he changed his tune, saying those businesses are "not major spreaders."

"Everyone is saying fitness clubs are not spreaders and saying fitness clubs are not a problematic issue anymore," Catalyst Fitness Owner Amy Bueme said. "OK, so great that's being said, but nothing is being done about it."

Bueme said she has never had a COVID case connected to her locations, and like many businesses, she is asking for the state to back up its claims.

During a press briefing Wednesday, a reporter from Albany asked the governor to release statewide data that shows where COVID-spread is coming from. 

Cuomo said that data is gathered from local governments and his administration is compiling it now.

"We then put it together and we analyze it. We're doing that right now, as a matter of fact, in coming up with the next configuration of our plan. We release it Friday, and I'll see if we can't put together a compilation of the local contact tracers and put it out on Friday," he said.

But as NYS begins to shy away from the micro-cluster strategy to focus on hospitalization metrics, why are the businesses that have been deemed "not major spreaders" in the Orange Zone closed?

That's a question that 2 On Your Side has been trying to get answered from the Governor's Office, but we've gotten no responses to the four emails we have sent.

A spokesperson for Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul directed us to this quote from Cuomo's briefing Wednesday about changes coming Friday. 

"Second operation is continuing to work to slow the spread of the virus. We have the Thanksgiving surge, if you will, and we're starting to see the full effect of that now, and we're analyzing the data on the Thanksgiving spread. We also talked to, literally, we've been blessed with international experts who have given us guidance and are looking at our data and our situation and actually recommend adding new factors to our plan, which I think is good advice, and we're going to do that and will announce a new plan on Friday."