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November 24, 2020   |   Ithaca, NY

News

NY trades travel advisory list for general travel guidelines

New York state Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Oct. 31 that New York state will no longer use the travel advisory list to determine who needs to quarantine before entering New York state.

Cuomo announced there will be general guidelines for people entering New York state instead. The two categories travelers can fall into are those who left the state for less than 24 hours and those who left the state for more than 24 hours. New guidelines will allow travelers to “test out” of the 14-day quarantine period that was in place. When the list was still in effect, there were 39 states, Guam and Puerto Rico on the travel advisory list. The list required people from those areas to quarantine for 14 days before arrival in New York state.

Travelers who were in another state for more than 24 hours and are entering New York state need to get tested within three days prior to arrival in the state, quarantine for at least three days once in the state and get a COVID-19 test on the fourth day in the state, Cuomo said in the statement. Travelers who receive a negative test are allowed to leave quarantine.

Cuomo said in the statement that he is proud of how New York state is handling COVID-19, but other states are becoming a problem as travelers can spread the virus. The state has had over 513,000 cases and over 33,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University. There are 56 active cases in Tompkins County as of Nov. 3. So far, October is the worst month in the county since COVID-19 tracking began, with 219 new cases. In September, there were 154 new cases.

“We’re going to a new plan given the changing facts, and the experts suggest we shift to a testing policy,” he said.

Those who leave the state for less than 24 hours are not required to quarantine when they re-enter, but they have to get a test on the fourth day of being back in New York state. They must also complete a traveler health form. Travelers from neighboring states that share a border with New York state are exempt from the new guidelines.

Ithaca College previously banned students from states on the travel advisory list from coming to campus for Fall 2020 before it made the decision to transition to remote learning. Approximately 47% of students who are U.S. citizens at the college have permanent residences in New York state, according to the Office of Analytics and Institutional Research.

The college announced Oct. 27 that students who are from states on the travel advisory list would have to quarantine for 14 days and get a COVID-19 test prior to arrival on campus for the spring semester. The college has not yet announced if the Spring 2021 move-in plans will change with the new guidelines. Communication regarding quarantine compliance and applying to quarantine on campus will be available in the next few weeks, the administration said in an email to the campus community Oct. 27.