NJ, PA and CT get quarantine exemption

In June, the governors of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut formed a joint quarantine agreement for travelers from other states.
In June, the governors of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut formed a joint quarantine agreement for travelers from other states.
Kevin P. Coughlin/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo
In June, the governors of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut formed a joint quarantine agreement for travelers from other states.

NJ, PA and CT get quarantine exemption

Cuomo says it’s impractical to bar travel from New York’s neighbors.
October 22, 2020

It pays to be New York’s neighbor. Despite rising numbers of coronavirus cases in Connecticut, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday that those three states would be exempt from the 14-day mandatory quarantine that travelers from other states with high numbers of COVID-19 cases must undergo when coming into New York for more than 24 hours. While Cuomo – along with the governors of Connecticut and New Jersey – stressed that nonessential travel between the states should be avoided, he said that enforcing the quarantine order on visitors from neighboring states would be impossible. “There is no practical way to quarantine New York from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Connecticut. There are just too many interchanges, interconnections and people who live in one place and work in the other,” Cuomo said on Tuesday.

But it appears that New York’s quarantine order is difficult to enforce no matter what state you come from. The New York Post reported this weekend that only one man – a Florida resident visiting New York – had been fined for breaking the quarantine order so far. While skeptics have been raising concerns about the weak enforcement mechanism behind the order since it was issued in June, Cuomo addressed those weaknesses on Wednesday. “The enforcement of that is highly problematic. We’re not equipped to do that,” he said during a press conference in Albany. Cuomo added that the state is now researching new ways to enforce the quarantine order, including rapid testing and new technology. Currently, travelers from 43 states meet the criteria for required quarantine in New York.

Annie McDonough
Annie McDonough
is a tech and policy reporter at City & State.
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