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Today's Top Stories - Wednesday May 13th, 2020

WENY TV reports it was confirmed by Local 1000 Steelworkers United Union President Warren Baker that 300 to 400 Corning employees in Erwin will be laid off. Affected employees will be notified this week and the official lay off date will begin on Monday, May 18th. President Baker said the layoffs were due to economic decline from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Local sales tax collections dropped 24.4 percent last month compared to April of 2019 and leaves many of New York’s local governments grappling with shortfalls according to State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli. Sales tax collections totaled $1.02 billion in April. The April figures show shrinking revenues for local governments throughout the state. Every county in New York State saw a large drop in April collections. Steuben County's collections dropped 28% last month.

U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand announced legislation to invest $4 billion in educational funding for the next relief package with the effort to guarantee students have access to technology and broadband to continue their education during the COVID-19 outbreak. The Senate’s Emergency Educational Connections Act of 2020 would provide $4 billion in funding ensuring all K-12 students have adequate home internet connectivity in order to continue their education during the coronavirus pandemic.

Yesterday at his daily coronavirus press brief held in Binghamton, Governor Cuomo urged to stay safe as the Finger Lakes and Southern Tier regions are set to begin phase one of reopening their economies this Friday, May 15th. Cuomo reminded the public that following CDC Guidelines is necessary to maintain public health and safety. 

Congressman Tom Reed along with state officials yesterday said they are celebrating the reopening of the area. According to WROC-TV, Reed said…“As we go forward on this journey our goal is to continue to build up that collaboration and agreement and cooperation and to continue opening up in the additional phases that we have in front of us.” This week Gov. Cuomo gave the green light for the Finger Lakes and Southern Tier Regions to partially reopen Friday. Reed believes opening up now is not premature and can be done safely. 

The Steuben County Public Health Department received notification that an additional Steuben County resident tested positive for COVID-19.  This brings the total to 246 confirmed cases. The individual is a resident of the Village of Arkport and is hospitalized, bringing the total number of current hospitalizations to eight. Public Health staff investigated and identified close contacts of the confirmed cases and exposure risks.  All those known to have direct contact with the individual have been notified.

Law enforcement officers across the region will recognize their comrades during the annual Law Enforcement Memorial Service set for this Friday May 15th at noon. The ceremony will be a Facebook live feed hosted at the Steuben County Public Safety Building. Sheriff Jim Allard said the event, which has been going on for six years now, will follow social distancing guidelines set forth by the State Department of Health for the COVID-19 pandemic. 

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