NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Another day, another plea from an industry desperate to move along on the road to reopening.
Fitness centers are urging Gov. Andrew Cuomo to review their extensive safety measures and let them welcome gym members back, CBS2’s Tony Aiello reported.
The Saw Mill Club is a fitness center and a social hub for some members who are widowed or retired.
“There’s a tremendous void in their lives, and I can’t wait to go back to the club and hope that it opens and see all my friends at a social distance,” said Linda Forman.
Since closing in March, the club has been reimagined – machines are rearranged, sanitizing stations and safety reminders are in place, masks and temperature checks are mandatory.
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A safety plan was sent to Albany weeks ago.
“We’ve submitted, we haven’t gotten any specific responses, besides some generalities,” said Rick Beusman, president of the Saw Mill Club.
Fitness centers join casinos, bowling alleys and other industries frustrated by the governor’s insistence they are too dangerous to open.
In Connecticut, gyms were allowed to reopen in mid-June.
“If we were in Connecticut, we’d be open,” said Beusman.
“There’s no reason why these businesses should be subjected to the whims of one person in Albany,” said former County Executive Rob Astorino, who is now running for state senate.
Astorino said it’s time for the legislature to demand action from Cuomo.
“They’re gonna lose their business. These are businesses that are not gonna come back,” said Astorino.
Five months without revenue marks an inflection point for the fitness industry: surveys show many clients may give up their gym memberships.
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy is also keeping fitness centers closed. Gym owners in both states filed lawsuits demanding they be allowed to reopen.
Gov. Cuomo worries reopening gyms would lead to more cases of COVID-19. Until he’s convinced otherwise, fitness center owners will have to sweat it out.
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