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Today's Top Stories - Saturday December 18th, 2021

Latest Steuben COVID Death a 31-Year-Old Campbell Woman
The Steuben County Public Health Department reports another COVID-related death: a 31-year-old woman from the Town of Campbell. This brings the total number of COVID deaths in Steuben County to 263 since the start of the pandemic. Public Health Director, Darlene Smith stressed:  "Masking, getting vaccinated and boosted, getting tested and staying home when feeling ill are all necessary to protect our loved ones during this time of high spread and with a very contagious variant in the region.  We all want to gather and celebrate the holidays together, but please do so smartly and safely."

All residents should continue to monitor themselves for COVID-19 symptoms of fever, cough, shortness of breath, chills or repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, and new loss of taste or smell and contact their healthcare provider for instructions if feeling ill. For the latest Steuben County updates, visit Steuben County's website at www.steubencony.org<http://www.steubencony.org> or social media pages: www.facebook.com/SCNYPublicHealth<http://www.facebook.com/SCNYPublicHealth> and www.instagram.com/SteubenPublicHealth<http://www.instagram.com/SteubenPublicHealth>.


Wreaths Across America Today at Bath VA

Wreaths Across America day is today at the Bath VA. The public is welcome to attend and participate in the wreath laying ceremony beginning at noon. This year’s theme is "Live Up to Their Legacy" with the mission to remember the Fallen and honor those who serve. COVID-related guidelines  like masking and social distancing will be strictly followed as required by the National Cemetery Administration, regardless of vaccination status. For guidelines, wreath delivery videos, and updates on the event, you can go to www.facebook.com/WAABathNYNationalCemetery.


STLS Expanding Library WiFi Access
In recent weeks, the Southern Tier Library System’s External WiFi Access Project was launched with all 48 public libraries within Allegany, Chemung, Schuyler, Steuben, and Yates counties soon broadcasting 100x100Mbps WiFi broadband internet to outdoor public spaces near a library’s physical location. STLS is the region’s public library system and has spearheaded the $224,247 EWA Project which is an extension of existing public broadband. The WiFi is made freely available to community members through public computers or indoor WiFi networks. Each library will receive roughly $4,600. Federal stimulus programs and support from the Corning Incorporated Foundation made the funding possible. 


Monday is Last 2021 Legislative Session & County’s 225th Anniversary
The final regular session of the Steuben County Legislature in 2021 is on the county’s 225th anniversary. Recognition of Steuben’s proud history and a much-loved tradition and gratitude for service will happen 10am on Monday as well as a proclamation by state Senator Tom O’Mara and state Assemblyman Phil Palmesano at the County Annex Building in Bath. Formerly a part of Ontario County, Steuben became the 24th county in New York on March 18, 1796, and divided into six town. Steuben County has since grown to 32 towns, two cities, and 14 villages with nearly 10 times the original population; with an essential place in the state in agriculture, industry and tourism.The Legislature also plans to accept over $169,000 in additional funds from the U.S. Secretary of Health & Human Services’ COVID- 19 Vaccine Response Grant. Legislators are also expected to award a contract to dispose of 850 tons per day of solid waste and the decomposition of the waste to convert greenhouse gases into electricity and reduce the carbon footprint. Lawmakers also anticipate to authorize a capital account for the Civil Defense and Public Works renovations work next year in 2022.


State Ban on Styrofoam Begins in January

As we are set to ring in the new year, our state is set to implement a sweeping ban on foamed polystyrene products or more commonly known as styrofoam. The sale and use of packing-peanuts, takeout containers, coffee cups, and the sale of all products using foamed polystyrene will end along with polystyrene manufacturing. The only exception to the styrofoam ban is that it will not not pertain to foamed polystyrene (used for raw meat or fish) or regular polystyrene which is a material that CD and DVD cases are made commonly made from. Though styrofoam comes at a low upfront cost to retailers and shoppers, it comes at a high price for the environment because it is not biodegradable, it’s made of petroleum and is difficult to recycle. Foamed polystyrene products have been estimated to take up about 30 percent of U.S. landfill space.


Corning Inc. Faces Discrimination Lawsuit
The Corning Leader reports the Corning Inc faces a discrimination law suit that accuses the company of violating federal law by failing to promote female machine operators at two of its locations: Sullivan Park research facility and its Big Flats production facility. It’s alleged that male employees were instead groomed for promotion. The suit was filed by the federal Equal Opportunity Employment Commission after the agency and Corning were unable to reach a settlement through the agency’s conciliation process. The suit also seeks damages and back pay for the women who say they were discriminated against. Corning, Inc. has not yet commented on this story.

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