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Bob Duffy gets advisory role in helping with reopening the Finger Lakes region

Apr 21, 2020

Bob Duffy of the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce, talking with reporters on a Zoom video conference call on Tuesday.
Credit Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce

Governor Andrew Cuomo is tapping some local and state leaders to help parts of the state reopen businesses and other venues in a very measured way.

During his daily briefing Tuesday, which was held in Buffalo, Cuomo said he would call on his former Lt. Governor, Bob Duffy, who is now the President & CEO of the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce, to help coordinate public health and business activity in the Rochester-Finger Lakes region.

Duffy is doing this on a volunteer basis, and says he will be acting in an advisory capacity, relaying his recommendations to the governor.

“My number one goal is to go out to listen; when I say go out, via Zoom meetings of course, listen, ask questions, gather data, gather information and look at where the best ways to reopen this economy, safely and in a way that really protects people’s public health,” Duffy told reporters on Tuessday.

Cuomo is appointing the current Lt. Governor, Kathy Hochul, to be his advisor for reopening parts of the Buffalo area.

Also on Tuesday, Monroe County Commissioner of Public Health, Dr. Michael Mendoza said that he realizes the need to reopen the local economy. During an hour-long conference with members of the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce, Mendoza said that Monroe County will have to make decisions about reopening in concert with nearby counties, which are also served by the health care system in Rochester.

“If Monroe County does something that is out of synch with Ontario or Genesee or Steuben, then we will not necessarily find our way through a solution because if we flatten the curve here, but it spikes somewhere else, our health care system is one system. And we have to look at it as a holistic unit and not just a county by county basis,” Mendoza said on a Zoom video conference call.

Mendoza also said that more testing will help determine how the local economy can be reopened.

Here’s a clip of Tuesday’s video call with Dr. Michael Mendoza and members of the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce: