Mayor de Blasio, Governor Cuomo anticipate changes to COVID cluster restrictions in improving zones

NEW YORK (WABC) -- Mayor Bill de Blasio said that New York City's COVID-19 cases appear to be "leveling off" but there is "still more work to do."

The mayor said that he knows everyone wants the restrictions now in place in the COVID cluster red and orange zones lifted as soon as possible but he asked residents in those areas to "dig deeper" and continue to wear their masks and social distance.
EMBED More News Videos

Dave Evans has the latest on New York City's fight to enforce COVID restrictions.

De Blasio noted that in Central Queens the numbers have dropped dramatically, but "We need to see more progress before we can remove restrictions." The mayor predicted that after working with the state on the timing, he thinks some restrictions, specific to Central Queens, could be lifted by as soon as later this week.

In Queens, the positivity rate went from 3.3% last week to 2.3%.

Governor Andrew Cuomo also weighed in on the hot zones saying that he plans on refining the restrictions and zones.

"So you could have circumstances where you had certain actions you have taken in a community where we feel comfortable it will bring down the numbers. We have three bars in some counties. If you said to me, we are closing those three bars, and then I would feel more comfortable about reopening. So we are looking at situations like that in the red zones," Cuomo said. "The numbers have come down, particularly in Queens, and we can adjust the zones. You can make them bigger, can make them smaller, the numbers are block by block. We are going to do that today, tomorrow and on Wednesday we will announce changes to the zones, and I do anticipate changes to the zones."

Both urged people to remain vigilant and stay the course. "Right now we are stopping a second wave." de Blasio said.

However, the daily positivity rate in the city announced by the mayor was up to 2.17% with a 7-day average of 1.62%.

Governor Cuomo's numbers had the positivity in the city much lower at 1.3%

The total positivity rate of all red zones is 3.3%, much lower than it was.

It still remains above 5% in parts of Brooklyn and at above 4% in Rockland and Orange counties.

NYC Schools Press Secretary Miranda Barbot also gave an update on testing in schools.

School officials say families can opt into remote learning at any time. The window for fully-remote learning students to opt into the blended learning model will soon open and they will communicate more information to families shortly.

"We know that nothing can replace in-person instruction and the many supports, including social emotional and health benefits, that students get in the classroom," NYC schools said. "Using the most current data from this survey, approximately 46% of students are returning to school buildings this fall. The share of remote learning requests by race has not shifted."

RELATED: Red, Orange, Yellow: Here are New York's new COVID cluster zones

RELATED: Here's when NY movie theaters outside of NYC will be allowed to reopen

WATCH: Eyewitness to a Pandemic
EMBED More News Videos

It overwhelmed the health care industry, it put millions out of work, it drowned social services in an ocean of need and threatened the food supply Americans had long since taken for granted. At the apex of the crisis and for the weeks that followed, no part of life, or even what followed life, was spared.


How coronavirus changed the New York region
Do you have coronavirus symptoms?
New York, New Jersey, Connecticut out-of-state travelers quarantine list
COVID-19 Help, Information. Stimulus and Business Updates

New York City

New Jersey
Long Island
Westchester and Hudson Valley

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on coronavirus

Submit a News Tip
Copyright © 2022 WABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.