New York State orders campgrounds not to open in April

OSWEGO, NY – Governor Andrew Cuomo issued executive orders prohibiting
groups of people of any size from gathering for any reason and closing businesses not deemed “essential.”

“Guidance issued by the Empire State Development Corporation under those executive orders confirms that all private campgrounds are not defined as ‘essential businesses’ and should be closed until April 30,” said Oswego County Public Health Director Jiancheng Huang. “Future executive orders may extend this deadline depending on a reassessment of the COVID-19 pandemic at that time.”

In late March, the state closed all public campgrounds in state parks until April 30.
Refunds are being issued to anyone who made a camping reservation before that date. No new reservations are being accepted until further notice.

“Last month, the Governor issued “New York State on Pause,” an executive order
effectively shuttering all ‘non-essential’ businesses in the state,” said Oswego County Community Development, Tourism and Planning Director David Turner. “We recently learned that this also includes our campgrounds and appreciate everyone’s understanding and compliance with this new guidance from the state.

“We are in extreme times in this battle against COVID-19. That requires drastic measures to help control and stop the spread of the virus. Only by observing these orders now, can we hope to overcome it and get back to enjoying the hometown hospitality of our campgrounds. I hope that everyone will join us and do their part to protect their families, neighbors and communities.”

Public and private golf courses, marinas and boat launches are also closed for recreational purposes until April 30.

“Everyone should be aware by now that the number of confirmed positive cases of
coronavirus continues to rise in Oswego County,” said Huang. “This is due, in part, to the ease of transmission through community spread and asymptomatic people.”
He continued, “An individual may appear perfectly healthy, yet still have the coronavirus and be highly contagious, which puts others at risk. It is imperative that people stay home, self-quarantine and not congregate or socialize with neighbors and friends. This is a sacrifice we all must make to flatten the curve and not overburden our area hospitals with COVID-19 cases as we see happening in New York City.”

Deterring people from traveling to Oswego County from areas of high coronavirus
transmission and infections is just one strategy that state and local public health officials are using to protect residents.

“The county has requested a voluntary compliance in limiting non-essential travel to help contain the spread of the virus,” Huang said. “We are asking that people whose birthdays end in an odd year travel only on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, and people whose birthdays end in an even year travel only on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.”

Officials continue to urge all residents across Oswego County to take personal
responsibility and follow these guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

– Stay home as much as possible.
– Try to adopt the voluntary travel plan.
– Avoid non-essential gatherings of all types and sizes. (All non-essential gatherings of any size are banned.)
– Keep six feet from other people.
– Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially before eating.
– Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and then throw the tissue in the trash.
– Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
– Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
– Stay home if you are sick.
– Call your healthcare provider from home if you are experiencing symptoms such as a fever, cough or shortness of breath.
– Do not go to an emergency department unless you are experiencing life-threatening conditions.
– Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Residents are asked to continue monitoring reliable sources of information. Go to
health.oswegocounty.com/covid-19 for the latest news releases, daily updates, and video presentations. People can also go to oswegocounty.com or health.ny.gov or cdc.gov.

Oswego County presents videos highlighting various COVID-19 topics on Mondays,
Wednesdays and Fridays. They are scheduled to be posted by 4:30 p.m. on Oswego County’s COVID-19 YouTube playlist, Facebook and the county government website at oswegocounty.com.

In addition to the Oswego County Health Department COVID-19 hotline, people can also call the NYS COVID-19 hotline at 1-888-364-3065 with questions. For more information about emotional supports, visit the Oswego County Department of Social Services Division of Mental Hygiene at www.oswegocounty.com/mentalhygiene.