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Today's Top Stories - Thursday May 6, 2021

Budgets, tax increase proposals released for local schools

A handful of school districts in Steuben County have released their proposed budgets and tax increases for the year. Districts in Steuben County, such as Arkport, Bradford, Campbell-Savona, Hammondsport, and Wayland-Cohocton have proposed a tax rate increase ranging between .18-1.99 percent in Steuben County. Proposed budgets range from $10.1 million to $118.1 million.


31 COVID-19 cases in Steuben County

The Steuben County Public Health Department received notification that 31 more county residents tested positive for COVID-19. This brings the total to 6,626 confirmed cases, 160 of which are currently active. 10 individuals are associated with Alfred State College, Avoca Central, Dana Lyon Middle School, Haverling High School, Hornell High School, VEW Primary, and Wayland-Cohocton Elementary.


Wegmans to do away with self-serve food bars

Wegmans spokesperson Laura Camera says the store chain does not plan on returning their self-serve hot and cold food bars, which were shut down at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The New York State Department of Health released guidelines allowing buffets to come back, however, self-serve bars were not included. People can still get the same food that was at the self-serve bar, however, it will just be packaged.


NYS single day COVID-19 positivity rate lowest since October 2020

Governor Cuomo announced today that New York State’s single day COVID-19 positivity rate has dipped to 1.27%, the lowest figure since October 22nd 2020. The seven-day average for the Southern Tier is below 1%, the lowest of any region in the state. The seven-day average for the Finger Lakes region is at 2.7%


O’Mara pushing to exclude benefits from taxable income

State Senator Tom O’Mara is calling for the approval of legislation he co-sponsors to exclude unemployment benefits from state taxable income. O’Mara said this would keep New York State in line with action already taken by the federal government to exclude the first $10,200 of unemployment benefits from 2020 taxable income.  In the last COVID stimulus package, the federal government waived federal tax for households earning up to $150,000. Although states were given the same option to exclude unemployment benefits from taxable income, New York has yet to accept and is one of only 11 states to not take advantage of this tax break as the May 17th filing date nears.

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