NEW YORK (WKBW) — New York Governor Kathy Hochul has extended the state's COVID-related state of emergency through April 15.
According to the governor's office, the extension gives the state the flexibility to troubleshoot hospital capacity issues and it will be reassessed in 30 days.
The declaration, which can be found here, says the following:
"WHEREAS, New York continues to experience COVID-19 transmission, with the rate of new COVID-19 hospital admissions remaining at over 100 new admissions a day;
WHEREAS, the SARS-CoV-2 variant known as Omicron, determined a variant of concern by the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is known to be highly-transmissible and to necessitate that persons have additional doses of vaccines for optimal protection;
WHEREAS, the state must pursue a coordinated approach to ensure hospital capacity statewide is able to meet regional needs;
WHEREAS, the State government must support the municipalities and counties in their efforts to facilitate and administer vaccinations and tests for COVID-19, and to prevent the virus from continuing to spread at such rates;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Kathy Hochul, Governor of the State of New York, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution of the State of New York and the Laws of New York State, do hereby continue the state disaster emergency as set forth in Executive Order 11, and continue the suspensions and modifications of law contained in Executive Orders 11, 11.1, 11.2, and 11.3, through April 15, 2022."
The governor's daily COVID-19 update Wednesday said the statewide 7-Day average positivity has been under 2% over the past 12 days. The statewide mask mandate for businesses and venues was lifted on February 10 and the statewide mask mandate for schools was lifted on March 2.
NYS Senate Republican Leader Rob Ortt issued the following statement on the extension:
Families, businesses and municipalities are sick and tired of having their lives dictated by executive order and mandates. Despite a drastic reduction in COVID cases, Governor Hochul continues to imprison New York in a perpetual state of emergency.
Enough is enough – Governor Hochul needs to immediately end this ridiculous state of emergency, let us restore checks and balances, and let New Yorkers finally get back to normal.