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Today's Top Stories - Monday, August 30th, 2021

Tomorrow Steuben Observes Opioid Overdose Awareness Day
As opioid overdoses and fatalities increased by at least 12 percent in Steuben County, Legislature Chairman Scott Van Etten proclaimed tomorrow, August 31st as International Opioid Overdose Awareness Day in the county. Van Etten said this campaign raises awareness of overdose-one of the world’s worst public health crises, and stimulates action and discussion about evidence-based overdose prevention and drug policy while it “acknowledges the profound grief felt by families and friends whose loved ones have died or suffered permanent injury from a drug overdose." Sponsored locally by the Steuben Prevention  Coalition’s Opioid Committee, organizers plan to hang purple ribbons across the county from Aug. 31 through Sept. 9 – the date of the first opioid awareness day hosted by The  New York State Department of Health. At least 110 overdoses and eight fatalities have been confirmed since January 1st, although state and local reports may fall short of the actual number due to privacy constraints.


Golden Age Cheese Creates Monthly Package for Flood Recovery 
Local Woodhull business, Golden Age Cheese, has put together a special monthly subscription package in an attempt to raise money for their own rebuilding efforts they call their “ComeBack Club'' after the extensive damage caused from the recent flooding while also donating part of the proceeds to support their neighbors through the “Woodhull, NY Recover Efforts.” Some businesses, like Golden Age, may not have had flood insurance which will make the cost of rebuilding and recovery that much more expensive. Those interested in supporting this cause can sign up for the monthly subscription delivered for five months which includes a local handmade Cheese Cutting board, a Golden Age Cheese Tee Shirt of your choice, a Premium Cheese Knife, and Your Name or Business listed on Golden Age’s “Cheese Wall of Fame” plaque which they will display in their retail store as they rebuild it.
Learn more about the club or sign up for your ComeBack Club package at  https://goldenagecheese.com/product/comeback-pack/.


NY Eliminates Health Workers' Religious Exemption for COVID Vaccine
The New York State Department of Health unanimously voted to implement that all state health care workers get the COVID-19 vaccine while also removing the religious exemption that would have allowed workers to use a religious reason to opt out of getting the vaccine. An attorney for the DOH says they are not constitutionally obligated to provide a religious exemption, which is also the case for the Measles and Mumps vaccine. Hospital and nursing home employees must be fully-vaccinated by September 27th while all other facilities must be by October 7th. Enforcement and compliance will be delivered at the facility level for employees choosing not to get vaccinated.


NY Will Require CoPays for COVID Testing in October
By the end of October, dozens of insurance companies in New York will again require copays for Coronavirus hospital stays and testing. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, early on in the pandemic, insurers limited out-of-pocket expenses for anyone diagnosed and hospitalized with COVID through cost-sharing waivers. However, more than a year in, that has changed. Currently, federal law requires COVID testing to be free, as long as it's deemed medically appropriate. However, tests are not covered if you're getting them as an alternative to the vaccine.


NY State’s Pandemic Eviction Expires Tomorrow
The Supreme Court's decision last week to allow evictions to resume during the pandemic is expected to affect 3 million Americans. The court found the CDC did not have the authority to re-impose a moratorium earlier this month without Congressional authorization. New York's eviction ban is set to expire tomorrow, but lawmakers have discussed extending it to the end of October. Gov. Hochul said she is in talks with the Senate Majority Leader and Assembly Speaker to call a special session to address the impending eviction crisis, given the Supreme Court's decision.


National Guard Announces Promotions of Two Steuben County Locals
The New York Army National Guard recently announced promotions of two area residents. Zak Davis of Bath, assigned to the Company A, 2nd Battalion 108th Infantry, received a promotion to the rank of private 1st class. Shaylor Woolever of Corning, assigned to the Company D, 2nd battalion, 108th Infantry also received a promotion to private 1st class.


Bath Man Charged with DWI
During a traffic stop in the Town of Bath, State Police arrested 31-year-old Frank Darrin of Bath. He was charged with DWI, having a blood alcohol content above .08% and second-degree aggravated unlicensed operation. He’ll appear in court at a later date. 


Hochul Says New Workers Memorial Honors Those Killed on the Job
Governor Kathy Hochul on Sunday unveiled a Workers Memorial at the New York State Fair in Syracuse. The memorial honors all transportation workers killed while performing their job duties on or near New York's thousands of miles of highways.

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