ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday that he was giving county officials the authority to add taxi drivers and restaurant workers to the list of people eligible for a coronavirus vaccine.
The governor’s announcement came days after he slammed elected officials for pushing to vaccinate restaurant workers when supply is limited.
But Cuomo said Tuesday the federal government is signaling that it will send New York more vaccines in coming weeks, which could free up more doses.
With the incoming increase, Cuomo says localities can also add developmentally disabled facilities to the 1B prioritization group.
"If a local government is now getting more, and if they believe in their local circumstance, they want to prioritize taxi drivers, Uber drivers, because they think that’s been a problem, or developmentally disabled facilities, or restaurant workers, they have that flexibility," said Cuomo. "And again, they are getting more, so theoretically they would have additional supply to make those decisions. But that’s going to be up to the local government to add in the 1B category, if they think it makes sense."
The federal government is expected to increase state supply 20% for the next three weeks, up from the inital 16% announced last week.
Private pharmacies in the state focusing on vaccinating the 65-plus population will also receive an additional 10%, which is about 30,000 doses.