Onondaga County Executive: ‘We’re ready to go’ with Phase one restart

Local News
Ryan McMahon and Onondaga County Seal

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon said Saturday, “we’re ready to go.” McMahon was referring to phase one of the restart plan for the Central New York economy on May 15.   

In terms of the state guidelines as to when a region could reopen,  McMahon said, “We have met those [guidelines]. We have the tracers, our hospitalization capacity is there, our hospitalization rates are very good and when you look at the testing, they changed the goalposts in the middle of the game there on testing, it’s okay. We’ve been proactively testing, and if you look at the last seven days, Onondaga County has almost done enough testing for the whole region to meet those [guidelines].”  The restart plan must be approved by Governor Cuomo.

McMahon says proactive testing in nursing homes and assisted living facilities continues and the county is now looking at possibly doing proactive testing in neighborhoods. 

If you are an essential worker, you can also sign up to get tested for COVID-19 at the Walmart located in East Syracuse.

“We’ve met the metrics that are in our control, and we believe our region is poised for a Phase one restart,” McMahon said. 

Phase one primarily includes manufacturing and construction companies being able to restart their businesses. However, it will not be business as usual. Companies will have to enact a new set of rules to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 at their businesses.

Once Phase one is underway, the county will have to monitor the virus for 14 days to ensure they do not see a spike in hospitalizations due to COVID-19, and then the county will be able to proceed with Phase two of their restart plan. 

There is no concrete date on when Phase one will begin in Central New York, but County Executive McMahon is hopeful that it will be on May 15.

“There is no doubt we have met what we need to do,” McMahon said. “I believe the governor still has the final stamp on when that goes, but we’ve met the guidelines set by the state. So, why we wouldn’t be allowed to go on May 15th… I have no clue why that would ever happen.”

Onondaga County saw a decrease in the number of hospitalizations due to COVID-19 on Saturday, another good sign the region is ready for a restart.

To watch Saturday’s full press conference from Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon, click on the video below.


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