The coronavirus pandemic has had a devastating impact on the economy across the country, and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has revealed just how much the outbreak has cost his city — which became the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States.
According to the mayor, New York City is now $9 billion in debt because of the virus.
“There is literally no way we can solve this problem without federal help or without having to make very, very painful choices that will affect the quality of life in this city,” de Blasio said at his daily press briefing, via the New York Post.
“This week I asked the state of New York for help. That is borrowing authority, it’s not something we want to use or intend to use in the first instance but it’s something we need as a last resort. No one wants to borrow. What we want is our federal government to step up.”
During the briefing, de Blasio once again asked for a federal bailout or additional help from the state.
The good news, however, is that de Blasio acknowledged new cases of COVID-19 have continued to decline so the city could launch into the reopening phases sooner rather than later.
The coronavirus mainly comes from animals and a majority of those who were infected early either worked at or frequently visited the Huanan seafood wholesale market in Wuhan, according to The Guardian. The virus is similar to Severe acute respiratory syndrome (Sars) and Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome (Mers).
The Wuhan coronavirus is transmitted from person to person through “droplet transmission.” That means an infected person can pass the virus by sneezing or coughing on another person as well as by direct contact.
While a majority of the cases have been detected in the United States and China — with more than 100,000 deaths in the United States — it has now reached many countries around the world. It has also been confirmed in Italy, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, and many other eastern countries.