Gov. Hochul: The winter surge is in full force

[anvplayer video=”5078204″ station=”998131″]

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — As the omicron variant starts to spread in New York State, Gov. Kathy Hochul is growing frustrated with those who she believes are politicizing her mask-or-vaccine policy in public places.

“It is upon us, the winter surge is in full force and I believe it’s going to get even stronger and more virulent and we are in for a rough ride this winter season,” Gov. Hochul said at a briefing on Thursday.

When it comes to the several counties across the state that have said they will not enforce the policy, the Governor says, “this was never intended to be heavy-handed in fact the best way to do this is self-enforcing… A year and a half ago they were shut down [businesses] that hurt them economically, that is not the place I wanna go ever again I do not want to have that happen.”

Locally, a number of our counties have said they either don’t have the resources or will not enforce the Governor’s policy. Monroe County Executive Adam Bello supports it and says he’s been fielding calls from businesses and providing advice on how to best handle it.

“Let’s settle down the conflict that exists out there, let’s work together and get it done because we all have the same goal,” Bello said, “even people who I understand don’t want to wear a mask, they have the same goal we do which is to get out of this pandemic with as many people alive and healthy as possible.”

Gov. Hochul was asked on Thursday whether there are metrics in place that will help her determine when the mask-or-vaccine policy will be lifted.

“I’m just curious, has anyone heard what I’ve said today about the situation we’re in? This is a crisis, this is a health care crisis and people are going to die it is not hyperbole it is based on the facts that are in front of us right now,” she said.