ANOTHER NICE MESS FOR
CUOMO, DE BLASIO
“Well, here’s another nice mess you’ve gotten us
The old catch phrase from the classic comedy team
of Laurel and Hardy comes to mind when considering
how Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio
have handled the response to COVID-19 spikes in
Brooklyn and Queens.
Where do we begin to recount this latest chapter in
these frenemies’ rivalry that puts at stake the safety of
The mayor first announced on Oct. 4 a plan to put
a “pause” on businesses and schools in the nine ZIP
codes where COVID-19 has been spiking. Everything,
he said, was pending the governor’s approval — and it
appeared, to some, that was a formality.
Not so. One day later, on Oct. 5, Cuomo pulled the
rug out from under de Blasio by shifting the school closures
up a day to Tuesday, Oct. 6 (the mayor had wanted
to close the schools Wednesday, Oct. 7) and disagreeing
with widespread closure of businesses.
The governor also questioned whether it was wise
for the city to consider entire ZIP codes or census tracts
by which to map out the cluster zones.
So Cuomo came up with what he deemed to be a
more crystalized plan of attack, with color-coded regions
of Brooklyn and Queens reflecting the cluster
with unique boundaries. The red areas, with the highest
cases, would go back to where they were before New
York City began reopening in June — including severe
restrictions on gatherings at houses of worship.
That development bristled people of faith in Brooklyn.
Members of the Orthodox Jewish community, in
particular, were outraged and took to the streets to protest.
Things got out of hand; an onlooker was assaulted,
and masks were reportedly torched.
Cuomo and de Blasio sought to calm things down and
provide greater specifics about the cluster action plan.
They also reiterated that the enforcement of COVID-19
regulations wasn’t aimed at any one community — but,
by then, the damage was done.
Of course they didn’t make this announcement together,
holding near-simultaneous press briefings on
Wednesday, Oct. 7. The city could’ve used a little unity,
and they couldn’t provide that.
Nothing’s riding on this cluster action plan other
than the overall health and well-being of millions of
New Yorkers, and the fate of our economy.
And its rollout was a nice mess that provoked anger,
confusion and resistance — largely because the governor
and mayor continue to butt heads on the things that
HOW TO REACH US
TIMESLEDGER | QNS.12 COM | OCT. 16-OCT. 22, 2020
Attention healthcare workers:
Tell us your coronavirus stories
As the coronavirus epidemic
rages on across New York City,
we want to hear from the health
care workers on the front lines
battling to save lives.
Our reporters want to speak
with health care workers about
what they’ve witnessed in emergency
rooms, medical centers,
nursing homes and other facilities
where lives hang in the balance
every day. We want to tell
their stories to show New York
City their courage but also the severity
of the conditions they work
in — and the situation they face.
We welcome submissions at
any time from active New York
City physicians, nurses, lab technicians
and other health care
workers who are helping to treat
Email Editor-in-Chief Zach
Gewelb at zgewelb@schnepsmedia.
com, and a reporter may contact
you soon. Your information
will be held confidentially; your
name will be used only with your
express permission, or withheld
By submitting, you understand
that the content must not be false,
defamatory, misleading or hateful,
or infringe any copyright or
any other third party rights or otherwise
We will use the contact details
that you provide to verify your
identity and answers to the questionnaire,
as well as to contact
you for further information on this
story. If we publish your content,
we may include your name and
PROUD MEMBER OF NEW YORK PRESS ASSOCIATION
V.P. OF ADVERTISING
Reporters: Bill Parry, Angelica
Acevedo, Carlotta Mohamed,
Jenna Bagcal, Jacob Kaye
Copy Editor: Katrina Medoff
ART & PRODUCTION
Art Director: Nirmal Singh
Layout: Zach Gewelb
Senior Account Executive:
MAIL: 38-15 Bell Boulevard, Bayside, NY 11361
PHONE: Display Advertising: (718) 260-4537
Editorial: (718) 260-4549
WEBSITE: Visit www.qns.com
E-MAIL: Editorial: firstname.lastname@example.org
Display Advertising: email@example.com
TO SUBSCRIBE: Call (718) 260-2515
Copyright©2019 Queens CNG LLC.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio once again failed to show unity during a time when we so desperately
needed it. Photo by Kevin P. Coughlin/Offi ce of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo