STAMFORD, Conn. (CBSNewYork) — Gov. Andrew Cuomo has said the reopening of New York will be a tri-state effort, but Connecticut and New Jersey could reopen sooner and in different ways.

Vito Derario owns ZaZa Italian Gastrobar on Broad Street in Stamford, Connecticut, and he’s scrambling to get his workers ready for customers who, as early as May 20, could get more than deliveries and take-out. They might get to once again dine on the property.

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“We follow the guidelines,” Derario said. “It’s going to be a little bit tricky.”

Barring an unexpected jump in the coronavirus numbers, Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont said he green lights four business sectors: restaurants, personal services including salons, retail and offices.

For Connecticut restaurants, it means 50% capacity with outdoor dining only, tables set up six feet apart, menus that are digital or on chalkboards, and workers wearing masks and gloves.

“We have to do what we have to do for survival,” Derario said.


Different northeast states are reopening in different ways. That could include New Jersey, with beaches open by Memorial Day.

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“You have a cooperative regional approach. Does that change at all if Connecticut on the 20th has restaurants open so that Stanford is open but White Plains is not, and if in New Jersey, you got some of the beaches open?” CBS2’s Dave Carlin asked New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

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“That’s not my decision, but their actions make sense to me and we will coordinate with that,” Cuomo said. “We talk through everything.”

Could the approach create a flood of New Yorkers heading to states that are opening earlier?

“We can’t align every action, but we’re aware of it and we’re monitoring it,” Carlin said.

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“It does concern me that the tri-state area is opening but not New York City,” Midtown resident Lauren Bendheim said.

It’s clear some people will travel long distances to get a haircut or dine in a restaurant but Cuomo says there are remedies for that.

“Be ready to adjust, be ready to move,” Cuomo said.

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And by move, he means shut it all back down if you have to.