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Mohawk Valley region officially enters phase two

FONDA — The Mohawk Valley region officially entered into phase two of the state’s reopening plan on Friday afternoon after a short delay.

Montgomery County Executive Matt Ossenfort, along with Montgomery County Public Health Director Sara Boerenko and Montgomery County Sheriff Jeff Smith gave an update on Facebook Live on Friday.

“I think we left the governor no choice, he did announce that phase two can begin,” Ossenfort said.

As of Friday, the county has 78 confirmed positive COVID-19 cases. Out of those 78 cases, Boerenko said 61 are folks who work outside of Montgomery County or traveled outside the county and came home. There are currently no hospitalizations, 12 are being monitored at home and 65 have made a full recovery.

Smith said the county deserves to start phase two.

“Since the beginning of this in March, members of the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office have been doing everything we can to respond to New York Pause complaints, face covering complaints, on top of the regular law enforcement functions and trying to support our community,” Smith said. “I think they doing a phenomenal job and I’m proud of that.”

Ossenfort said the Mohawk Valley Region Control Group anticipated moving forward to phase two on Friday but did not get phase two guidelines until Friday morning.

He said around 7 p.m. on Thursday they got a phone call that there would be no executive order to go into phase 2 which was “shocking and frustrating.”

“Thankfully the governor did the right thing today and opened up the Mohawk Valley as well as some of the other regions,” Ossenfort said.

“We are now officially in phase two and we look forward to getting through phase two and into phase three,” Ossenfort added.

He reminded everyone stay safe and responsible to keep numbers down, so they can make it to phase three.

Phase two businesses that opened on Friday include office-based jobs, real estate services, retail in-store shopping, vehicle sales, leases and rental businesses, retail rental, repair and cleaning businesses, commercial building management and limited barbershop and hair salon services.

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