Rochester businesses brace for state mask warrant expiration

ROCHESTER, NY (WROC) – New York State’s indoor mask mandate is set to expire on February 10and. This means that if the mandate is not extended, state law will no longer require businesses to require indoor masking.

Now local businesses are preparing for how they will move forward, with or without masks.

Serpil Ozay owns Empire Hair Salon & Spa in Webster and said if the mask mandate is lifted on Thursday, she will still require her customers to mask up.

“If it’s sure, why not? If you don’t want to, that’s your problem. It’s your choice,” Ozay said, “I personally think it’s the safest thing right now for a little longer, at least, why not? It won’t hurt us. It hasn’t hurt us so far. So it won’t do anything different. I think as long as we are safe. Prevention is better than cure.

However, on Park Avenue, the owners of the Jines restaurant have still not decided what they will do if the state’s mask mandate is not extended.

“We want to be in a position where we also protect ourselves by wearing masks. So we’ll see what we do there. It’s not the easiest answer,” said Jines restaurant owner Peter Gines.

Although the term was previously extended, Governor Kathy Hochul said the statewide Covid numbers were heading in the right direction.

“I always said that I would make decisions on all of our requirements that we had in place based on the data. Not by pressure. Not on a whim. Not just waking up one day and saying, “It’s time. Everything is data-driven,” Governor Hochul said.

The state reported nearly 3,800 statewide cases on Sunday, which is the lowest since Nov. 8.and from last year. Governor Hochul said local businesses have to thank for the drop in cases.

“New Yorkers, I have to tell you, all of the business owners who have followed through on what we asked, you are the reason we are seeing these numbers and I don’t take that for granted,” Gov. Hochul said. . , “To everyone who had to apply them, you did the right thing, and that’s why we’ll get through this. We have the best numbers of any major state, that’s what we’ve been tracking. We do better because we’ve been smart.

The governor is expected to make an announcement Wednesday regarding the indoor mask mandate for businesses.

The state’s mask mandate for schools is due to expire Feb. 21st unless it is extended before that date.

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