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Today's Top Stories - Thursday January 21st, 2021

Steuben Health Dept. Reports 79 New COVID Cases; 440 Active Cases
Yesterday, Steuben County’s Health Department reported that the county has 79 new positive cases, bringing the total number of currently active cases to 440. 42 County residents are hospitalized while the total number of confirmed cases since the pandemic’s beginning is up to 4,740. 156 county residents have died from the virus.


3 National Guard Members Die in Mendon Helicopter Crash
The investigation continues this morning after three New York National Guard members were killed while on a National Guard Blackhawk helicopter as part of a routine training mission when it crashed south of Rochester last evening. The medical evacuation helicopter went down in a rural section of Mendon. Monroe County Sheriff Todd Baxter said there were several 9-1-1 calls before and after the fiery crash. Congressman Chris Jacob said he was deeply saddened by the news. Governor Cuomo said he was devastated and directed flags on all State buildings be lowered to half-staff today to honor these New Yorkers who dedicated their service and life to nation and state.


Three Steuben Residents Arrested for Drug Charges in Traffic Stop
Three people have been arrested after a traffic stop in Canisteo resulted in the discovery of multiple controlled substances. Yesterday, officers of the Canisteo Village Police Department initiated a traffic stop on East Main Street in the village. According to the department, officers recovered over 30 grams of Methamphetamine, Crack Cocaine, LSD and more. Arrested were 47-year-old James B. Hilligus of Larue Road in Bath, 36-year-old Adam C. Koester of State Route 244 in Alfred Station and April L. Wheeler of Larue Road in Bath.


Cuomo Reacts Positively to Biden Inauguration
Joe Biden swearing in as the 46th President of the United States yesterday received a positive reaction from Governor Cuomo. Cuomo remarked he is very excited for the changes ahead and that Biden has been a “great friend to New York” and was the go-to person for Cuomo regarding state issues under the Obama administration.


McDonalds’ Promotion Today Offers 25 Cent Burgers
Today, you can buy a McDonald’s cheeseburger for only 25 cents as part of the fast-food chain’s ongoing “Throwback Thursday” deal if you order from the McDonald’s app and spend at least $1. McDonalds offers another promotion next week on Thursday January 28th where you get a small shake for a quarter (with the same restrictions applied).


Uninsured New Yorkers Can Apply to NY State of Health by 3/31
Governor Cuomo announced the extension of the window for New York’s uninsured to get insurance through the state health portal. The new deadline is March 31, 2021 for New Yorkers to apply for coverage through NY State of Health, New York’s Official Health Plan Marketplace, or directly through insurers. Those enrolling by  February 15th will get Coverage that starts March 1st while coverage starts April 1st for those enrolled by March 15th. Those enrolling at the latest possible date by March 31st will begin their coverage May 1st. Individuals eligible for other NY State of Health programs including Medicaid, Essential Plan and Child Health Plus may enroll year-round. New Yorkers can apply for coverage through NY State of Health online at nystateofhealth.ny.gov, by phone at 1-855-355-5777, and by connecting with a free enrollment assistant.


NYS Launches Investigation into Rising Drug Prices During Pandemic
New York State initiated an investigation into the rise of prescription drug prices during the COVID-19 pandemic. Governor Cuomo announced that the Department of Financial Services’ newly-formed Office of Pharmacy Benefits sent a demand pursuant to New York Insurance Law Section 111 requiring a statement from the manufacturer explaining the facts and circumstances surrounding the spikes to begin investigating significant price spikes for six drugs that were connected to the COVID-19 pandemic. Cuomo said it’s “shameful” that pharmaceutical companies are profiting from those in need and significantly raising the prices on life-saving prescription drugs during the. These drugs are: Ascor (ascorbic acid) 25,000 mg/50 mL bulk vial , Budesonide 0.5 mg/2 mL inhalation (60 mL), Dexonto (dexamethasone) 5 mL vial of a 0.4% solution, Mytesi (crofelemer) 125 mg delayed release tablet, 60s, Duramorph (morphine sulfate) 1 mg/1 ml (10 mL 10s)  and Chloroquine phosphate 250 mg tablets.


O’Mara's Amendment Would Limit Cuomo’s COVID Emergency Powers
Senator Tom O’Mara Wednesday advanced a legislative amendment on the floor of the New York State Senate to bring an end to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s unlimited, unilateral COVID-19 emergency executive powers. O’Mara said, “Emergency executive powers were necessary at the outset of the COVID-19 response. Ten months down this hard road, however, he said it’s long past time to end state government by Cuomo executive order. 


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