It’s official: phase 4 starts Friday & more people allowed in churches

WWNY It’s official: phase 4 starts Friday & more people allowed in churches

NEW YORK (WWNY) - The north country is on track to embark Friday on phase four of the state’s regional reopening plan and more people will be allowed in religious and social gatherings.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo made those announcement at a news conference in New York City Wednesday.

He said the decisions were based on steadily declining coronavirus infection rates.

Four other regions – Central New York, the Southern Tier, the Mohawk Valley, and the Finger Lakes – are also set to enter phase four.

Opening under phase four are low-risk outdoor and outdoor arts and entertainment venues, media production, and professional sports.

Included are indoor and outdoor museums, indoor and outdoor historical sites, zoos, agricultural exhibitions, and media production services for such things as films, music, and television.

Guidelines for opening cover rules for wearing face coverings, distancing, sanitizing, maximum occupancies, and patron traffic flow.

Not included in phase four reopening plans are malls, movie theaters, and gyms. Cuomo said the state is looking at issues that have arisen around those types of businesses in other states.

The governor also announced that indoor religious gatherings will be allowed for up to 33 percent occupancy. That’s up from 25 percent.

The limit for social gatherings will also increase. The number of people allowed in one place is going from 25 to 50.

Part of the news conference was dedicated to a joint announcement by Cuomo, Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont, and New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy.

The three governors announced they were imposing travel advisories for people coming to their states from states with very high COVID-19 infection rates.

People coming from those states will be asked to quarantine themselves for 14 days.

The quarantine rules take effect at midnight Wednesday.

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