County Issuing Certificate Of Compliance To Help Businesses Invite Back Patrons
By Tina Traster
New York State has laid out a series of guidelines that businesses must comply with in order to reopen but there is no official system for checks and balances for the COVID-19 world.
However, if a business wants to announce to the world that it has its ducks in a row, the business can contact the Rockland County for a certificate that says it is complying with the New York Forward guidelines. Essentially, it’s an honor system.
“As Rockland County reopens, we will be sending the certificate to all businesses who have successfully attested to the reopening guidelines under the New York Forward program,” said County Executive Day. “Not only will this show compliance, but it will also encourage other businesses to participate and embrace our motto of, ‘Safety First, People Always.’”
The certificate, which can be displayed in a window or on a wall, should give consumers as boost of confidence. Last week, Day said, “Going back to normal is not a simple thing,” during the 17th annual Palisades Institute County Executive Forum 2020, delivered via a Zoom meeting. “It’s not a simple matter of checking the boxes. People have anxiety. They are fearful. We have to take steps over and above.”
Rockland County, along with the Mid-Hudson Region are in Phase Two of the NY Forward Reopening Plan. This includes: offices, real estate, in-store retail, vehicle sales, leases and rentals, retail rental, repair and cleaning, commercial building management, hair salons and barbershops and outdoor dining.
“We are moving forward because our numbers continue to trend in the right direction,” said Day. “One of the numbers we watch very closely is that of hospitalizations. We separate this data into two categories, those hospitalized and confirmed to have COVID-19 and those under investigation for COVID-19. Eight weeks ago the total for both categories was 335. And this week the total dropped to 16.”
The county executive said Rockland is on track to enter phase three on June 23rd, which will allow the reopening of restaurants and personal care businesses including nail salons, spas, massage therapy and tattoo and piercing facilities.
Phase four, slated for July 7th, will allow the reopening of arts, entertainment, recreation and education services.
The certificate program is part of a new initiative, the Rockland On A Road to Recovery and Stimulus (R.O.A.R.R.S.) program. The ROCK COMM Economic Development Committee, comprised of public and private sector partners with expertise in industry sectors, has been tasked with coming up with long-term sustainable business retention and expansion.
Private sector and government will have to work side by side to make a resurgence possible.
“We look forward to working with all businesses in Rockland County who have demonstrated compliance by sending them a Certificate of Affirmation,” said Director of Economic Development and Tourism Jeremy Schulman. “As we continue to move through the reopening phases, we hope all businesses will participate in this initiative to welcome back Rockland together and stronger than ever.”
For more information on certificates, contact the Rockland County Department of Economic Development and Tourism office at (845) 364-2170. To affirm or check compliance, visit Forward.ny.gov.