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COVID-19: Rockland County Exec Fires Back After Cuomo Says No One Asked For Containment Zone

The darker shaded areas have the highest concentration of COVID-19 cases. Photo Credit: Rockland County Government
The request for the containment zone from Rockland County Executive Ed Day to Gov. Andrew Cuomo appears in the second paragraph of the letter shown here, written on Thursday, April 2. Photo Credit: Rockland County

As the number of cases and deaths related to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continue rising in Rockland, County Executive Ed Day asked Gov. Andrew Cuomo to establish a containment zone for Ramapo.

That request was made in a letter written on Thursday, April 2. (See second image above.)

But when asked on Saturday, April 4 about the request at

a news conference in Albany, Cuomo replied, "Nobody's asked me," Cuomo said.

Day said he was "dumfounded" by that response.

"I was as dumbfounded as all of you when Gov. Cuomo was asked by the press during his daily COVID-19 briefing about the status of our request for a containment zone and unbelievably responded, 'Nobody asked me,' " Day said. "Melissa DeRosa, Secretary to the Governor, then chimes in that she’ll reach out to Rockland County as they are, 'All ears at all times.' "

Day then produced a copy of the letter he wrote to Cuomo.

In it, Day wrote, "Due to the dire situation that we face here in Rockland County, illustrated by the 3,751 Reported Positive COVID-19 Test Results and the 42 confirmed COVID-19 related deaths, I am requesting that New York State establish a containment zone within the Town of Ramapo and that a temporary hospital be set up within the County.

"The attached COVID-19 Hot Spot Grid Map is based on cases that have been confirmed and verified by the Rockland County Department of Health. Based on this map, I am asking that the boundaries of the proposed containment zone be set at Route 45 in the east, Grandview Road in the north, College/Forshay Road in the west and the New York State Thruway in the south.

"The areas highlighted by this map as having the most cases, have each breached a dangerous threshold. More than 1% of the total population of the corresponding zip codes (see attached Zip Code Map) has tested positive for COVID-19. This is recognized as a dangerous tipping point by members of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, further reinforcing the point that action must be taken."

DeRosa went on to say at the news briefing: "What we did in New Rochelle with the containment zone we've now done essentially for the whole state."

That was far from enough for Day, who said to Cuomo, "if you are telling the truth then you need to have a serious conversation with office communications personnel AND your THREE staff members who also received the attached letter.

"And to both the Governor and Secretary to the Governor, Melissa DeRosa, how in God’s name could you not know of this?

"Major news outlets, heavy social media coverage, along with a load of calls and emails to your office in support of this request, not to mention one of your staffers who actually saw it live. These responses strain credibility and that is putting in mildly.

"While lives are in the balance, nobody knows anything? That is what we in Rockland are expected to believe?

"Well, I guess you do 'know' now, and I await a call on my cell. The people of Rockland are beyond fed up."

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