With some beaches set to reopen, Bellone calls them 'part of the fabric of life here'

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Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone gave his Friday COVID-19 update, with additional insight into the county's plans to reopen some beaches.
Briefing Notes:
- Bellone talks about his summer planning workgroup's work - Bellone requested opening 2 county beaches Thursday.
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- Felt it was unrealistic to keep families stuck home on Memorial Day Weekend. Says it was better to provide a safe plan - 'we have to provide something for kids and families to do ... beaches are part of the fabric of life here.
- 'It's far better to have these protocols in place than trying to delay that. We have a plan.'
- Bellone: Face coverings are not required on county beach areas/in the water.
- 175 new positive cases over last 24 hours - 37,719 in total (not including antibody results).
- About 8,000 antibody positive tests.
- May 13 numbers (system has been down): Decline of 21 hospitalizations -- 554 total.
- 12 new COVID-19 deaths - 1,709 total death toll.
- 185 ICU bed occupants, increase of 2.
- 69% hospital capacity rate - 65% ICU capacity.
- 44 COVID-19 hospital discharges.
- In terms of lifeguard hiring - says they have not considered the process of hiring those with/without the antibodies. One lifeguard per stand.
- Though Suffolk has its own dashboard for reopening, both Nassau and Suffolk need to meet the metrics to reopen.
PHOTOS: Coronavirus heroes on the front lines
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