1.11.21 COVID-19 Bulletin: NYS State of the State
January 11, 2021
NYS State of the State.
The impact of COVID-19 dominated New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s State of the State address today. In his remarks the Governor outlined in broad stokes a plan to defeat the pandemic, vaccinate all New Yorkers, address the state’s short-term economic crisis, and prepare for the state’s long-term economic resurgence.
The Governor called for New Yorkers to stay vigilant in efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19 and ensure adequate hospital capacity. Citing the success of opening the Buffalo Bills playoff game this past weekend to a limited number of fans, the Governor said the state will continue to deploy more robust rapid testing networks to help open new segments of our economy as soon as possible.
Cuomo called on the federal government to dramatically increase New York’s allocation of COVID-19 vaccine. Based on current shipment rates, it would take New York 14 weeks to vaccinate people who are currently eligible according to Cuomo. In addition to identifying thousands of vaccine outlets across the state, the Governor is establishing a NYS Public Health Corp where 1,000 fellows will be trained to sustain a statewide vaccine campaign for one year.
Cuomo said he will advance legislation to stimulate and incentivize the production of medical equipment in NYS to help the state be better prepared for the next public health crisis, as well as expand accessibility to tele-health to all New Yorkers.
Cuomo again urged the federal government to help New York address its $15 billion budget deficit before a new state budget is due April 1. The Governor said Washington, DC is liable for our deficit and has a responsibility to address it. There is growing confidence President-elect Biden and a Democrat controlled Congress will approve aid to state and local governments in the coming weeks.
In addition, Cuomo announced his intention to:
- Legalize adult recreational use of marijuana
- Legalize mobile sports betting
- Make broadband affordable to everyone across New York
- Provide rent and mortgage relief and limit penalties for late payments
- Advance air, rail, and road infrastructure projects
Specific detail about these proposals is expected in subsequent speeches later this week. The BNP will provide updates.
The Buffalo Niagara Partnership is committed to providing employers with the latest information and resources to help you deal with COVID-19 and its impact on our community, state and nation. Visit our Events and Resource pages as they are updated regularly to provide you with the most current information.
Do you have specific questions related to running your business or your business unit?Visit the BNP Business Link, a question and answer forum for, and by, the Buffalo Niagara business community. Submit your questions and get expert answers on just about any topic from legal, IT, HR, NYS regulations, sales, marketing, communications and more. It is quick, confidential, powerful and convenient.
BNP has stepped in to assist the City of Buffalo in their efforts to organize the generous support offered by the business community. Updated 5.20.22 With the establishment of the two funds described below, interested donors are encouraged to contact the appropriate fund directly to provide support.
Without fanfare, the New York State Department of Labor updated its website to announce the relaxation of some NY HERO Act provisions. Employers can now forego enforcing their workplace safety plans.
Governor Kathy Hochul has issued an Executive Order extending New York’s state of emergency declaration for COVID-19. The state of emergency was scheduled to expire today, but Hochul extended the declaration through April 15.
A new report from the Empire Center for Public Policy details how expensive a single payer healthcare system would be in New York. The full report is available here.