Yesterday Governor Cuomo announced that Allegany County along with the Western New York Region has met the criteria outlined in the Regional COVID-19 Metrics charts and has been approved for the Phase I Reopening effective at midnight on May 19, 2020. If you would like to see where all regions in New York State stand in the Regional Reopening Plan, that information can be viewed at: https://forward.ny.gov/regional-monitoring-dashboard
In addition to the essential businesses that have remained open during the PAUSE, Phase I will add the following businesses only:
- Wholesale Trade
- Select Retail for Curbside Pickup Only
- Agriculture, forestry, and fishing
Any business in these categories will need to follow the procedures that New York State has established. They should go to the New York Forward website https://forward.ny.gov/ for further information and to complete the certifications that will allow them to open. Additional information can also be obtained from Allegany County’s website at https://www.alleganyco.gov/coronavirus/reopening-allegany-county/, and we have also created the following email address to firstname.lastname@example.org so that we may better address your questions.
As businesses open, they must have a plan to protect employees and consumers, making the physical work space safer, and implement processes that lower risk of infection in the business. In developing these plans, businesses will need to consider three main factors:
- The first factor is protections for employees and customers. These include possible adjustments to workplace hours and shift design as necessary to reduce density in the workplace; enacting social distancing protocols, and restricting non-essential travel for employees.
- The second is changes to the physical workspace, including requiring all employees and customers to wear masks if in frequent close contact with others and implementing strict cleaning and sanitation standards.
- The last factor for businesses to consider is implementing processes that meet our changing public health obligations, like screening individuals when they enter the workplace, or reporting confirmed positives to customers. While these processes will vary from business to business, almost everyone will have to adapt in some way or another.
Each region will reopen businesses in phases which allows time to monitor the effects of the reopening and ensure hospitalization and infection rates are not increasing before moving to the next phase.
As Allegany County begins to reopen it is imperative that all residents continue to practice social distancing, remain diligent with personal hygiene, and wear face masks in public whenever social distancing cannot be maintained.