As the number of COVID-19 cases continues to decrease and her Republican opponents continue to criticize her in the midst of a heated election contest, New York Governor Kathy Hochul said on Monday that she would allow a state of emergency to be lifted.
Hochul, a Democrat who took office in New York State after former Governor Andrew Cuomo resigned, has extended two executive orders each month that allow her to circumvent state contracting rules and ease licensing requirements for health care workers. Cuomo resigned from his position in the year prior to Hochul's election.
The orders will be considered invalid after midnight.
Hochul said on Monday"I will not be renewing them this time," Hochul as well as stated that "We’re in a different place now. We’ve been making announcements about taking masks off on public transportation. We have a new booster shot as of a few days ago."
She said that the state was able to acquire COVID testing kits and transmit samples to labs located outside of the state because of the emergency.
Because of Hochul's use of her emergency powers, Republicans, most notably her opponent, U.S. Representative Lee Zeldin, have been critical of her actions. According to a story from the Times Union, her government has acquired COVID tests that may be done at home in the amount of $600 million.
Hochul's campaign received contributions totaling more than $300,000 from individuals affiliated with the business Digital Gadgets, which was responsible for providing the exams. She has repeatedly denied that the donations had any role in the decision to grant the contract.
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