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Today's Top Stories - Monday May 4th, 2020

Steuben County announces that all county parks will reopen tomorrow. County parks include: Kanakadea Park in Hornellsville, Birdseye Hollow Park in Bradford, Harley Mayo Park at Boyd's Corners in Cameron, and Hornby Park in Hornby. However, playgrounds and pavilions will remain closed at this time. For general COVID-19 Questions please refer to the NYS 24/7 Hotline at 1-888-364-3065.


Those looking to make a difference in the community in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic can donate blood at several upcoming local blood drives as the urgent need for blood continues. Tomorrow is a blood drive at the Kanona Fire Hall 1-6pm. Friday May 15th the Bath First Presbyterian Church has a blood drive from 11:30am to 4:30pm. A Drive is also scheduled at the Hammondsport Fire Department Thursday May 21st from 11:45am to 5:45pm. To donate blood call 1-800-RED-CROSS or go online at redcrossblood.org


Steuben County Sheriff’s Office reports the Friday arrest of Ryan L. Reynolds of Campbell.  Deputies responded to a vehicle sales location in the Town of Campbell due to a report of an intentionally damaged vehicle. Reynolds was located and interviewed as a person allegedly matching the video description of the person who damaged the vehicle and recovered physical evidence which led to the allegation that he also damaged approximately three dozen vehicles in the Corning area on April 28th and 29th.  A joint investigation then ensued with the City of Corning Police Department leading to the subsequent arrest of Reynolds. Reynolds was charged with Criminal Mischief in the Third Degree and Criminal Mischief in the Second Degree then arraigned in the Centralized Arraignment Court and released to appear in the City of Corning and Town of Corning Courts at a later date.  The investigation continues, with further charges possible in the future.


New York’s completed antibody testing study show 12 percent of the population have COVID-19 antibodies. The survey developed a baseline infection rate by testing 15,000 people at grocery stores and community centers across the state over the past two weeks. The rate is 6% in western NY and 2% across the southern tier. Total COVID-19 hospitalizations in New York have dropped below ten-thousand – but Gov. Cuomo still calls the 280 new deaths 'tremendously distressing' -- urging New Yorkers to wear face coverings - for public safety and respect for front-line employees.


As May is Mental Health Awareness Month Veterans are encouraged to access VA Mental Health Support from home.To help reduce the risk of infection at the facilities veterans are being reminded and encouraged to use VA’s online resources for routine or non-urgent mental health care and questions to help protect veterans from contracting COVID-19 while enabling providers at VA Finger Lakes Healthcare System to focus on care for veterans with the most acute needs. The Bath VA reminds veterans they offer them a variety of at-home resources, including telephone or video appointments and veterans should maintain their existing mental health appointments and can receive at-home care via the VA Video Connect on their computers, smartphones, or tablets. To set up telephone or video appointments, veterans can send their health care provider a secure message on My HealtheVet by visiting myhealth.va.gov and can learn more about VA Video Connect at mobile.va.gov/app/ va-video-connect.


While in Rochester this morning for his daily coronavirus press briefing, Governor Cuomo said he believes it to be disrespectful to those people on the frontlines during this pandemic to not wear a mask while in public. Cuomo also advocated for penalties to those not wearing the masks in public due to it being a public health emergency. He also remarked that it is the legal right of local and county governments to impose fines and sanctions as penalties to those not following the order.

A Hornell duo are now facing second-degree murder charges, in connection with an alleged overdose death. Angela Dixon and Adam Carbonell are being charged along with assault and criminal sale of a controlled substance. Police say the body of 33-year-old Bridgette Cologgi was found back in January with an autopsy finding a fentanyl overdose as her cause of death. Officers raided a home in Hornell on Adsit Street the next day, finding concentrated fentanyl and heroin at the residence. Both Dixon and Carbonell are held in Steuben County Jail currently pending arraignment.


Review and discussion of the fiscal impact of COVID-19 and planning for re-opening County offices will be the subject of a special county Legislature Reopening and Recovery Committee set for 9 a.m. Thursday. Chairman Scott VanEtten says they are meeting to discuss a phased approach to reopening the County operations. VanEtten says they want to be prepared once the Governor relaxes the stay-at-home orders. Regarding the fiscal impact, the chairman says lawmakers need to take actions to reduce our County spending for the balance of 2020 to address the reductions in revenues that will occur.

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