Reopen News: Officials have warning as Long Island enters Phase 4

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Wednesday, July 8, 2020
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As Long Island enters Phase 4 of reopening Wednesday, officials have a warning about where the new positive cases are coming from.

LONG ISLAND (WABC) -- As Long Island enters Phase 4 Wednesday and more tourist attractions can open, officials warn that 15% to 25% of Nassau County's positive test results are people from out of state.

"Up to a quarter of our new cases over the past two to three weeks come from out of state," Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said Tuesday. "It's a really big concern as we watch the map. We are asking if you are coming to visit Nassau County, we have done a really good job here of containing the virus, of stopping the spread. And I think we've proven right here that we can reopen. We are going to get into Phase 4 tomorrow. We can get back to business."

She went on to say that while visitors are welcomed, those coming from states with rising numbers of cases are asked to quarantine.

Curran said Phase 4 is "very exciting" and includes reopening zoos, museums, historical sites, botanical gardens and aquariums.

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"Some higher education as well, film and movie production can resume, which is very exciting for us, its actually a huge revenue generator for Nassau County," Curran said. "We've got some fabulous studios, Gold Coast, Grumman, HBO is building a set for a very big ambitious show right here in Nassau, very exciting."

But Curran noted that malls are not included in Phase 4, and it is unclear when they will reopen.

"We've been talking about malls," Curran said. "I was hoping that we could actually move malls a little earlier, they were in Phase 4, now they are not in Phase 4, we are still awaiting word on that."

Suffolk Count Executive Steve Bellone said Phase 4 is a "significant milestone."

Gatherings can increase from 25 to 50 people and houses of worship can move up to 33% capacity.

The reopenings in Suffolk County include the Long Island Aquarium, the Long Island Maritime Museum, Long Island Game Farm Wildlife Park and the children's museum.

"And important to us, getting to this milestone, getting to Phase 4, reaching this phase, as I said, there is much more work to do, we are in for a long-term recovery," Bellone said.

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