NY pools and beaches set to open

New York state senator representing Long Island's South Shore, Sen. Todd Kaminsky waited all spring for news announced Wednesday.

"Statewide, Memorial Day," Gov. Cuomo said in his daily briefing, "beaches and pools open with six feet of social distancing."

"We want our beaches opened up as much as possible as soon as possible," Kaminsky said.

Cuomo also unveiled, Wednesday, his goal of opening all beaches and pools in the state at full capacity by July 4.

"If the numbers keep going the way they're going," he said, "we're going to be able to do that."

"We know you don't get COVID on beaches," Kaminsky said. "We know it's a very safe place to be."

Recent reporting from The New York Times suggests outdoor transmission rates likely sit below one percent. And yet, the state's department of health told Fox 5 enforcement of the six-foot rule will fall to the operators, both private and public, of the state's various pools and beaches.

"I'd like to think that you are not putting your towel within two feet of another person," Kaminsky said.

For Long Beach residents waiting for their city to start selling beach passes while it waited for the state to tell it how many people New York might allow on the beach this summer, Sen. Kaminsky said Wednesday's announcement from the governor should ease any concerns of municipalities limiting the number of passes.

"I've talked to Long Beach officials today," Kaminsky said, Wednesday. "They're going to be rolling out their passes very soon, possibly as soon as this weekend. They know their pricing."

And in Long Beach, where the population doubles on summer weekends, crowded open beaches represent signs not only of normalcy and fun but also economic vitality.

"Our businesses depend on the summer traffic," Kaminsky said. "They depend all year long on it."