Indoor dining on Valentine’s Day only possible if New Yorkers ‘do what’s necessary’ and heed COVID precautions: Cuomo

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Dave Goldiner, New York Daily News
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Don’t fudge up the next few weeks if you want indoor dining open in time for Valentine’s Day, Gov. Cuomo warned New Yorkers on Saturday.

“We can open up indoor dining in New York City by Valentine’s Day, but actually getting to that point will be a consequence of our actions,” the governor said. “We must do what’s necessary for stamping out virus once and for all.”

Cuomo’s call to stay the course came as the COVID-19 positivity rate dipped to 4.75% Friday — down from more than 7% at the height of the post-holiday surge.

The state recorded 12,804 new coronavirus cases and 140 deaths, daily numbers that are also slightly lower than recent statistics.

Cuomo says if the trend keeps going down, he will move to allow restaurants in the city to open for indoor dining at 25% capacity. That would be a big breakthrough for beleaguered eateries as the city and state seeks to turn the corner from the deadly yearlong pandemic.

The governor also said weddings of up to 150 people may also be permitted soon if the numbers keep going in the right direction.

New York was hit the hardest when the deadly virus first struck the U.S. last winter. Now the state is in a race to get as many residents vaccinated as possible as potentially more contagious COVID strains spread across the world.