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Governors from NY, NJ, CT, PA, RI, DE and MA to work together to begin reopening

In Western New York, Town of Amherst Supervisor Brian Kulpa said the town is creating a reopening agenda and recovery plan.

ALBANY, N.Y. — New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Monday, he is partnering with the governors of New Jersey, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Rhode Island to help get people back to work and restore the economy.

Governor Cuomo said during his press briefing, the next step is to work on a plan to reopen the state. He says it will be decided by public health and economic experts, not politicians. The plan will need to be coordinated and will need federal support.    

Each state will appoint a public health official, economic official and a chief of staff who will form a group on designing the plan that will lift the states' stay at home orders while  also minimizing the risk of increased spread of the virus. 

"We have been collaborating closely with our neighboring states to combat this pandemic through a uniform approach to social distancing and density reduction and it has been working well. Now it is time to start opening the valve slowly and carefully while watching the infection rate meter so we don't trigger a second wave of new infections," Cuomo said. "This is not a light switch that we can just flick on and everything goes back to normal - we have to come up with a smart, consistent strategy to restart the systems we shut down and get people back to work, and to the extent possible we want to do that through a regional approach because we are a regional economy. New York is partnering with these five states to create a multi-state council that will come up with a framework based on science and data to gradually ease the stay at home restrictions and get our economy back up and running."

2 On Your Side spoke to Town of Amherst Supervisor Brian Kulpa about what it would take to reopen the town.

"I would say that once we see a flattened curve and the Governor starts to give us a go ahead, we’ll probably bring the town up to 25 percent then 50 percent then 75 percent and tapper up" he said. "We don’t want to overload any of our departments."

Kulpa said the town is creating a reopening agenda and a recovery plan. He said it would take about a month to get the the town up to full speed.

"The recovery economically is gonna take some time so we want to build a plan to work with small businesses" he said. "We want to work with neighborhood representatives to make sure that we have a good agenda moving forward that we learn some good lessons and be a more sustainable town coming out of this."

The Buffalo Niagara Partnership also announced Monday it is conducting a WNY COVID-19 Business Impact Survey. The survey is designed to assess the pandemic's impact on Western New York businesses.

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