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New York, N.J. and Conn. Requiring Mandatory Business Closures; Takes Effect at 8 p.m. Tonight

(Darren McGee/ Office of Governor Andrew Cuomo)

March 16, 2020 By Allie Griffin

New York, New Jersey and Connecticut businesses will shutter as part of a tri-state effort to stem the spread of coronavirus, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced today.

The number of positive cases of COVID-19 jumped to 950 across New York state, with 463 cases in New York City and 7 deaths statewide, Cuomo said.

Accordingly, to limit the spread — gyms, movie theaters and casinos have been mandated to close tonight at 8 p.m. until further notice in the tri-state region. Restaurants and bars must also close indefinitely at that same time, but are allowed to have delivery and takeout going forward.

The State Liquor Authority will change their rules to allow wineries, distilleries and bars to deliver, Cuomo said Monday.

The governor also “strongly advised” that only grocery stores, gas stations, pharmacies and medical facilities stay open after 8 p.m. — though it’s not mandatory at this time.

Gatherings of 50 or more people are forbidden in the three states as well.

The unprecedented effort between the three states is stop people from “state shopping,” Governor Cuomo said, — for example, if bars are closed in New York, but not New Jersey, New Yorkers don’t travel to Jersey bars.

“Our primary goal is to slow the spread of #Coronavirus so that the wave doesn’t crash our healthcare system,” Cuomo tweeted. “Social distancing is the best way to do that.”

He called on the federal government to implement nationwide protocols, as state are working on their own measures which creates a piecemeal effort against coronavirus.

The three states joined together to enact the measures in the absence of a federal action plan, Cuomo said.

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