Sign-up for our newsletter!

Long Island Regional Control Room

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Meet the "Regional Control Room" appointees Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo tapped to help reopen Long Island from the pandemic.

Before New York's regions reopen, they need to work out logistics, such as creating regional “control rooms” to monitor the effects of the reopening.

On Monday, Cuomo counted Long Island among areas that "are very close" to meeting reopening requirements, though he didn't provide details. Three upstate regions have been approved to start reopening when the "Pause" order expires Friday.

The appointees to Long Island's "Regional Control Room" are:


Bellone, a Democrat, has been the Suffolk County executive since January 2012. The former Babylon Town supervisor has cut the size of the government by more 10% while also trying to merge services and improve the economy by bringing back downtowns and upgrading north-south transportation links.


Curran, a Democrat, has been the Nassau County executive since January 2018. She has promised to reform property tax assessments and the Nassau University Medical Center, and foster economic development by returning Islanders hockey to the county. She served in the county legislature starting in 2014. 


"The labor movement has been among the leaders working in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. We will continue to meet this challenge together and work toward a safe and health reopening of our regional economy.  Thank you Governor Andrew Cuomo for ensuring working people have a voice in the process of reopening our regional economy."-John R. Durso, President of the Long Island Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO

Durso has served as president of the Long Island Federation of Labor since 2005. His career as a labor advocate dates back to his being hired as a deli clerk at Waldbaum’s supermarket in 1970; as president of Local 338, he represents 16,000 workers. 


Edwards, the Long Island director of the NAACP, also is a commissioner of the state Public Service Commission. For 17 years, she was the president of the Northeast region for Verizon Communications, leading the restoration of power to local clients after superstorm Sandy in 2012. She is also a former Huntington Town Board member.


Gertler, the executive chairman of U.S. News & World Report, has been president and CEO of Empire State Development since last year. In 2018, he joined the board of the state’s economic arm. He also leads Ulysses Ventures, a fund focused on young businesses. 


Law has been the chief executive of the Long Island Association since 2010. The business umbrella group aims to strengthen the local economy and reduce the tax burden. He previously led the Long Island Power Authority.

This article first appeared in Newsday.