5.29 COVID-19 Bulletin: NYS Phase 2 Guidelines Released

UPDATE: New York State has released guidelines for Phase 2 industries.

As of this post, Western New York has not been cleared to reopen Phase 2 industries. There has been no official information released as to when Phase 2 reopening will begin in WNY or any region of New York, but we will share that information with you as soon as it is available.

The newly released information contains detailed guidance for the following industries:

  • Offices
  • Real Estate
  • Essential and Phase II In-Store Retail
  • Vehicle Sales, Leases, and Rentals
  • Retail Rental, Repair, and Cleaning
  • Commercial Building Management
  • Hair Salons and Barbershops

The guidelines issued for Phase 2 industries also include a Business Safety Plan Template. Having a clear and available re-opening safety plan is a critical part of this process. This plan should be posted in your workplace, available for review, and communicated to employees.

In addition, the guidelines also contain a Business Affirmation Form that allows a business to acknowledge it has read the guidance and understands its obligation to operate accordingly.

For help determining if your business is eligible to reopen, use the New York Forward Business Reopening Tool.

Video: Compliance with NYS Guidelines 

The Partnership has produced a video tutorial on the steps employers need to take, including what forms need to be filled out on the NYS website, to be in compliance with the state’s reopening protocols.  Watch it here.

Face Covering Executive Order

Governor Cuomo issued an Executive Order yesterday allowing private business owners to refuse service to members of the public who are not wearing masks or face coverings.  Learn more about the Executive Order HERE.

Paycheck Protection Program Update

The United States House of Representatives has overwhelmingly passed the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act. This bill makes the following changes to the Paycheck Protection Program:

  • Extends the loan term from 8 weeks to 24 weeks;
  • Lowers the percentage of loan proceeds that must be used on payroll from 75% to 60%; and
  • Extends the PPP from June 30th to Dec. 31, 2020.

The measure must now pass the Senate.

Liability Protection for Employers

Help Us Fight for Liability Protections for Employers

Join the Buffalo Niagara Partnership and employer organizations throughout New York State in asking Governor Cuomo to enact liability protections related to COVID-19.

As New York’s economy beings to reopen, businesses and non-profits are justifiably worried about potential COVID-19 related lawsuits.

The business community is asking Governor Cuomo to enact liability protections to protect businesses acting in good faith and following government issued guidance.  Add your voice to this important issue now.



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.

Have additional business questions?  We’ve got answers through the BNP Business Link, our new rapid response portal. Get connected to our team of subject matter experts, supported by expert member companies ready to confidentially answer your pressing business concerns.

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