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Cuomo cracks down on violators of out-of-state travel ban

Governor Cuomo's office

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is tightening quarantine orders for of out-of-state travelers with high rates of COVID-19.

Cuomo says travelers from the 19 states now on the restricted list will be required to fill out a form that includes the address of where they will be for the mandatory 14-day quarantine, or there will be immediate repercussions.

“It will be enforced in every airport in the state of New York,” Cuomo said.

Violators who don’t turn in the forms will face an automatic $2,000 fine and may be called to a hearing before a judge to arrange a mandatory supervised quarantine.

The governor issued the rules after incidences of travelers from Georgia and Florida, two states on the travel ban list, spreading the virus in the upstate region

Cuomo says New York now has very low rates of COVID-19, with just 10 deaths on Sunday, and he does not want to see the virus rate increase because of infection brought in from other states.

States included on the travel advisory as of July 13, from New York State Department of Health :

  • Alabama
  • Arkansas
  • Arizona
  • California
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Iowa
  • Idaho
  • Kansas
  • Louisiana
  • Mississippi 
  • North Carolina
  • Nevada
  • Oklahoma
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Utah

This list is based upon a seven-day rolling average of positive tests in excess of 10%, or the number of positive cases exceeding 10 per 100,000 residents.
The State Senate Minority Leader, Robert Ortt, says Cuomo’s order infringes on civil rights.

“This overreach of power violates the civil liberties of New Yorkers and citizens across this country, who do not need the government to threaten fines and quarantines in order to travel responsibly,” Senator Ortt said, in a statement. “This is putting an unwelcome mat at New York’s door. Such severe action will keep people and their dollars away, at a time when our businesses need them most”

Ortt encouraged civil liberties groups to challenge the order in court.

Karen DeWitt is Capitol Bureau chief for New York State Public Radio, a network of public radio stations in New York state. She has covered state government and politics for the network since 1990.