Ten US states are planning separately from the White House to reopen businesses shut owing to the coronavirus outbreak. Governs of three states from the US West Coast and seven from the East Coast said on Monday that they will develop coordinated regional plans to start closed business.
US President Donald Trump too had been contemplating plans of restarting the economy at the earliest but the picture seems to have changed over the past couple of weeks with coronavirus cases soaring. The United States is currently the hardest hit with more than 582,000 having tested positive for coronavirus and over 23,600 deaths.
10 US states devise reopening strategy
Three states on the U.S. West Coast, led by California Governor Gavin Newsom, and seven on the East Coast, led by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, said on Monday they were devising regional plans to reopen. The 10 governors banded together in two regional pacts to coordinate gradual opening of the economy as coronavirus crisis somewhat appeared to ease.
The announcements of the two pacts to devise plans to reopen the economy came just after President Donald Trump said that any decision on reopening the country's economy depended solely on him. The White House is already formulating plans about reopening the economy that are likely to be announced soon.
Interestingly, all the states, except for Massachusetts, are led by Democratic governors. The ten states combined accounted for 38% of the country's total economic output in fourth quarter of 2019.
What are the plans of the 10 states?
Majority of US' economic output is generated from the most populous states that include California and New York. Together New York and California account for around 23% of total US economic output, according to figures provided by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.
Naturally, reopening these places at the earliest is the primary objective. Although Trump said that a decision on opening the economy depends solely on him, he later said that he would prefer to leave it to the governors of the respective states.
In order to reopen the economy, all 10 Governors plan to follow a shared approach. However, they said that first they need to "see a decline in the rate of spread of the virus before large-scale reopening" can take place. California is expected to detail its plans with Oregon and Washington on Tuesday.
Although reopening is of utmost importance, the health and safety of the people is a priority given the escalating number of coronavirus cases. The announcements by the 10 states came as signs emerged that the crisis had peaked. US reported at least 1,500 new deaths, below last week's running tally of 2,000 deaths every 24 hours. That said, each state will take individual decision on lifting restrictions and reopening the economy based on specific needs.