KEY POINTS

  • Anyone traveling to New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut from a state with a high number of coronavirus cases must quarantine for two weeks after arriving
  • Violations will be met with fines, starting at $2,000 for the first, followed by $5,000 for the second and $10,000 for the third
  • The advisory comes as the three states continue reopening, with regions of New York entering phase 4 of the state's reopening plan

The governors of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut issued travel advisories Wednesday in response to the surge in coronavirus cases in southern and western states. The advisories require anyone traveling from states with high case numbers to one of the three northeastern states to quarantine for two weeks upon arrival.

“We have to make sure the virus doesn’t come in on a plane,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo said during his daily briefing Wednesday.

“We worked very hard to get the viral transmission rate down, and we don’t want to see it go up.”

The travel advisories apply to states where 10% of the total population has tested positive for coronavirus on a seven-day rolling average. Current states that fall under this qualification are Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Washington, Utah and Texas.

“As we look around the rest of the country, we’ve seen not just spikes, but we’ve seen real community spread of better than 10% positivity rate in a number of these states that we’re talking about right now,” Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont said at a briefing. “We reluctantly came to the conclusion that this is what we’ve got to do to make sure our region stays safe and our states stay safe.”

The three states will be handling their own enforcement of the advisory when it goes into effect at 12 a.m. Thursday. Anyone found in violation will first be fined $2,000 for not quarantining, followed by $5,000 for a second violation and $10,000 for a third.

“We live in the densest neighborhood in America. We’ve been clobbered by this virus. No region in the country has paid a bigger price, with the loss of brothers and sisters. We’ve lost just under 13,000 members of our New Jersey family,” New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said at his Wednesday briefing.

“New York has paid an enormous price. Connecticut has paid a big price as well. We have taken our people, the three of us, these three states, through hell and back and the last thing we need to do right now is to subject our folks to another round.”

The advisory comes at a time when all three states have made progress in reopening after nearly three months of lockdown from coronavirus. Five regions in New York are set to begin phase 4 of reopening by the end of the week, allowing venues like movie theaters, museums, and high education to reopen.

Cuomo said he was happy with the progress New York has made in reopening but also took the chance to criticize states where reopening appeared to be rushed.

“The concept that you could open recklessly, see the virus transmission go up, and think that was going be good for the economy was bizarro-land,” Cuomo said.