Today's Top Stories - Tuesday April 6th, 2021

49 More Steuben Residents Test Positive for COVID
The Steuben County Public Health Department received notification that 49 more County residents tested positive for COVID-19 since Friday's update. This brings the total to 6,073 confirmed cases, 207 of which are currently active. Six individuals are associated with the following schools: Avoca Central, Calvin U Smith Elementary, Hope Christian Academy, Tuscarora Elementary, VEW Primary. The individuals are isolated and being monitored by the County Health Department.  Public Health staff investigated and identified close contacts of the confirmed cases and exposure risks.  All those known to have direct contact with the individuals have been notified.


Sheriff & Opioid Coalition Warn of Counterfeit Pills Via Social Media
Following a recent NBC News report, the Steuben Prevention Coalition Opioid Committee and Steuben County Sheriff Jim Allard warn parents and residents in Steuben about the uptick in sales on social media of sales of counterfeit pills containing the deadly fentanyl.The county Sheriff’s Department partners with federal Drug Enforcement Administration investigations because the federal penalties are more severe. Fake pills that look identical to the prescription pharmaceuticals, such as the opioid Hydrocodone, the stimulant Adderall, and the sedative Xanax, now contain fentanyl and are readily available online and through social media outlets.


Wegman’s Now Offering COVID Vaccine to Those 18 and Older
Wegmans stores in New York state opened up scheduling appointments for COVID-19 vaccinations to those 18 years old and up beginning today as New York State has changed eligibility to anyone 16 and older. Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines will be offered by Wegmans at each location noted at the time of scheduling appointments. Those 18 years old and older looking to schedule an appointment are advised to go to the Wegmans website or call 1-800-207-6099. Appointments available April 8th-14th.


Legislature Declares “Public Health Week in Steuben County”
Yesterday, Chairman Scott Van Etten and the rest of the Steuben County Legislature proclaimed this week as Public Health Week in Steuben County. The Legislature declared April 5th-11th as Public Health Week in the county as “recognition of the importance of public health,” and encouraged residents of Steuben County to “join us in applauding our dedicated public health employees and community partners in their efforts to Building Bridges to Better Health.”


O’Mara Criticizes Excluded Workers Fund in NY Budget
State Senator Tom O’Mara has denounced talks underway between Governor Andrew Cuomo and Albany’s legislative Democrats to include a first-in-the-nation, billion-dollar-plus fund in this year’s state budget to provide retroactive unemployment benefits to undocumented immigrants and former prison inmates who were excluded from federal aid since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Reports of the budget talks in recent days have pegged the size of the new fund, being called the “Excluded Workers Fund,” as high as $2.1 billion and some recipients would be in line to receive one-time payments of up to $28,000. O’Mara says it would be part of a new state budget being negotiated by Cuomo and legislative leaders that could raise taxes by nearly $5 billion and put in motion billions upon billions of dollars in new spending for the foreseeable future. O’Mara, the Ranking Member on the Senate Finance Committee, said, “This Democrat budget could be the most radical tax-and-spend proposal to ever come out of Albany. 


NY Restaurants Eligible for Direct Pandemic Relief
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced that New York restaurants are now eligible for their own direct federal pandemic relief. This was all part of the American Rescue Plan that recently went into effect. Schumer announced that more help is on the way for the Southern Tier economy, but that local restaurants need to apply through the Small Business Administration.

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