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Could the reopening of New York be done region-by-region?

State Assemblyman Andy Goodell and State Senator George Borrello submitted a plan for a 'phased-in' reopening of New York, by region and industry sector.

CHAUTAUQUA COUNTY, N.Y. — The question many of us have is when will the strict restrictions across the state be lifted. 

New York State Assemblyman Andy Goodell and New York State Senator George Borrello submitted a plan for a 'phased-in' reopening of New York.

The two Republicans in Chautauqua County are proposing that the restarting of the state's economy should be phased in by region and by industry sector.

They say this should happen as quickly as possible, while following appropriate Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, and other public health standards.

"It's important that when we begin to reopen, we take all the appropriate health-care precautions that we need to prevent new spread," Goodell said. 

The lawmakers believe taking a regional approach is important because the infection rate and potential risk factors vary from one part of the state to another.

"This proposal suggests that we make the decision to restart on a phase-in basis focusing on each region within the state. In other words, we don't wait for New York City to be clear if we can safely reopen upstate," Goodell said. 

Under the plan, the risk assessment would include factors like the number of active cases, population density and healthcare capacity.

It's a concept Congressman Tom Reed, also in Chautauqua County, supports.

"That regional approach makes a lot of sense," he said. "One size fits all just doesn't work, not in our region, not in the state, not in the country. Given the nature of where the virus is at, given the public health briefings I've had, I know we can do this safely." 

In his daily briefing, Gov. Andrew Cuomo was asked about the idea of reopening parts of the state before others.

"If you're in one state and parts of the state are in a different situation than other parts of the state, why can't those parts of the state open sooner? I think they can," Cuomo said.

However, Cuomo explained several questions would need to be worked out like when would they open and how would it be phased in so that it doesn't compete with other parts of the state.

He said that's when the conversation starts to get tricky.

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