Statement from Speaker Carl Heastie

Recognizing that there are extraordinary events unfolding by the hour, I convened a conference call this afternoon with my Assembly Majority colleagues. During the call, members were provided an update on what has occurred in the last few days, and instructed on internal contacts regarding continuity of operations and staffing concerns. Each member has unique circumstances, and they will be handled on a case by case basis.

As this is an unprecedented health crisis, concerns related to testing were heard. We are in contact with the Department of Health (DOH) to evaluate members and staff and conduct testing and proper next steps where appropriate. I have asked members to keep the lines of communication open so that we can continue to address any issues in a timely manner.

We are trying to delicately balance our constitutional duties while at the same time attempting to adhere to DOH protocols and keep the public safe.

This situation is changing rapidly. Our plan is that members will return to Albany on Monday to take action on important legislation while practicing appropriate social distancing in order to keep everyone safe.