Local News

Auction of Fitness Equipment Online

Next Level Fitness, located at 59 Main St. in Batavia, is auctioning off all their equipment from the three-story facility.
Hundreds of items will be auctioned, including gym equipment such as weights, workout machines, treadmills to mats, exercise balls and more.
The auction also features general items including some furniture, shelving and multiple televisions.
Link to the internet auction HERE

COVID-19 Daily Update: April 21, 2020

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE

April 21, 2020

New Cases

·         As of 2:00 p.m.

o   Genesee County received 3 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 130 positive cases

§  Two positive cases reside in Batavia and one resides in Elba.

§  One individual is in their 20’s, one individual is in their 50’s, and one individual is in their 60’s.

§  2 of the positive individuals were on quarantine prior to becoming symptomatic.

§  6 of the previous positive cases have recovered and have been released from mandatory isolation.

§  3 of the total active positive cases are hospitalized.

 

o   Orleans County received 2 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 58 positive cases

§  Two positive cases reside in Albion.

§  One individual is in their 30’s, one individual is in their 50’s.

§  2 of the previous positive cases has recovered and has been released from mandatory isolation

§  4 of the total active positive cases are hospitalized.

 

·         Orleans County has received word of one new death notification related to COVID-19.  The individual was over 65.  Our condolences to the family and friends of this individual during this difficult time.

 

·         Contact tracing has been initiated for all new cases.  Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms become present).

·         Due to the current limited swabbing kits, there continue to be guidelines in place for primary care providers to order COVID-19 swabbing.  This is based upon screening for high risk categories.  Contact your primary care provider first to discuss symptoms and the ability to be swabbed.  For information about the community testing visit https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/covid-19-testing or call the NYS COVID-19 Hotline at 1-888-364-3065 for more information.  All individuals will be screened and must have an appointment.  The local health departments do not have a supply of swabs for the community, call your primary care provider or the community hotline.

·         If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated.  Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.

·         When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names of close contacts, we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts.

·         If you are experiencing ANY COVID-19 related symptoms STAY HOME!  Do not go to work, do not go to the store, do not go anywhere, YOU are spreading the virus.  STAY HOME!

Click here to view the Genesee and Orleans County online map of confirmed cases

OPERATIONAL UPDATES

·         Because COVID-19 is circulating locally, we can’t stress enough how important social distancing is and that EVERYONE needs to take this seriously and stay home! It is your social and civic responsibility to protect yourselves and others.

o   If you must shop for essentials, such as food, necessary household supplies or prescriptions, shop solo!  Wear a face covering and wash or sanitize your hands frequently.

Mental Health

·         Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations and having to socially distance yourself from someone you love can be difficult. Below are resources that can help you connect to a professional that can help you through these challenging times:

o   Care + Crisis Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text  ‘Talk’ to 741741

o   New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling

o   Head Space:  A mindfulness app called Headspace is offering some meditations to listen to for free to ease minds in such a stressful time. The app is free to download and includes meditations, sleep, and movement exercises to help with the varying emotions you may be feeling. The app does include in-app purchases. https://www.headspace.com/covid-19

 

NEW YORK STATE RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE

·         The State Department of Health will begin to conduct a statewide antibody testing survey Monday, April 20th.  This is a limited randomized antibody testing, not diagnostic testing.  Locations do not include Genesee or Orleans Counties.  We will share any updates as they are made available.

·         New Yorkers who have recovered from COVID-19 are encouraged to donate blood. Here’s information on how to donate or for the American Red Cross Donation Program, click here.

·         An awareness campaign encouraging low-income New Yorkers to claim their Economic Impact Payments under the CARES Act.  Click here for more information.

·         The Governor has extended the Disaster Emergency through May 15, 2020.  https://www.governor.ny.gov/news/no-20216-continuing-temporary-suspension-and-modification-laws-relating-disaster-emergency

·         Complaints regarding businesses are being referred to the State Department of Labor via online form https://labor.ny.gov/workerprotection/laborstandards/coronavirus-complaints.shtm or phone:  1-822-789-0470.

·         New York State on PAUSE: To assist local authorities with enforcement of these orders, the Governor established the New York State PAUSE Enforcement Assistance Task Force where individuals can file complaints regarding the operation of non-essential businesses or gatherings 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Click here to file a complaint online. You may also call 1-833-789-0470. Businesses that are not in compliance with the Governor’s executive order may be penalized.

 

Nominations Being Accepted for BCSD Foundation Scholarship

Nominations are being accepted for the 2020 BCSD Foundation, Inc. Scholarship.   This scholarship will be awarded to a graduating senior from Batavia High School.  The nominee has been successful in his/her educational program and has sought out skills to further his/her career.  In addition, he or she has exemplified our Batavia school culture and climate of “Be Respectful, Be Responsible, Be Safe, Be Connected and Be Ambitious.”

Any member of the local community may nominate a Batavia HS Senior who meets the above criteria.  Nomination forms are available on the Batavia City School District website.  You may complete the Google Form or the pdf document to nominate a deserving senior.  All nominations need to be received by May 11, 2020.

Morning News Briefing

Add five more positive cases of coronavirus in Genesee County that brings the total detected to 127.
Of the five new cases: two reside in Batavia, two in Elba and one lives in LeRoy. The health department reports that three individuals, previously listed as positive for the virus, have recovered and released from mandatory isolation.
Orleans County reports seven new positive case, all from Albion.

Governor Cuomo will be heading to the White House today for a meeting with President Trump. The president said during a briefing yesterday he was looking forward to the governor’s visit. The pair have clashed in recent weeks over the response to the coronavirus crisis. There’s no word yet on exactly what the two leaders are going to discuss. New York has the highest number of coronavirus cases of any state in the country. Thousands of Empire State residents have also lost their lives.

Governor Cuomo says the state is developing a plan that will allow some upstate hospitals to resume elective surgeries. He said any plan would be developed on a regional rather than county level.
The lack of elective surgeries has placed a financial burden on hospitals. Elective surgeries are a money maker for hospitals.
More details are expected to be released today.

The United Way of Genesee County has now cancelled this year’s Day of Caring.
The popular event was originally scheduled for May 13th, then postponed
to later this year has now been cancelled entirely.

This note for residents of Attica and Alexander: today’s planned water disruption will not happen.
Officials say the water main shut down has been postponed until this Friday, April 24th.

COVID-19 Daily Update: April 20, 2020

 

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE

April 20, 2020

New Cases

  • As of 2:00 p.m.
    • Genesee County received 5 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 127 positive cases
      • Two positive cases reside in Batavia, two reside in Elba, and one resides in LeRoy.
      • One individual is in their 20’s, one individual is in their 30’s, one individual is in their 40’s, one individual is in their 50’s, and one individual is in their 60’s.
      • 3 of the positive individuals were on quarantine prior to becoming symptomatic.
      • 3 of the previous positive cases has recovered and has been released from mandatory isolation.
      • 3 of the total active positive cases are hospitalized.
    • Orleans County received 7 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 56 positive cases
      • Seven positive cases reside in Albion.
      • One individual is in their 50’s, one individual is in their 60’s, two individuals are in their 70’s, two individuals are in their 80’s, and one individual is in the 90 and above age category.
      • 1 of the previous positive cases has recovered and has been released from mandatory isolation
      • 5 of the total active positive cases are hospitalized.
  • Regarding the sharp increase in the Genesee County positive individuals, they are not considered community-spread as they are all detainees at the Buffalo Federal Detention Facility located in Batavia. Although the detainees are not considered residents, because the facility is housed in Genesee County they are reported as Genesee County positive cases. Any workers with direct contact with those who have tested positive at the facility for COVID-19 will be followed by their county of residence.
  • Contact tracing has been initiated for all new cases. Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms become present).
  • Due to the current limited swabbing kits, there continue to be guidelines in place for primary care providers to order COVID-19 swabbing. This is based upon screening for high risk categories. Contact your primary care provider first to discuss symptoms and the ability to be swabbed. For information about the community testing visit https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/covid-19-testing or call the NYS COVID-19 Hotline at 1-888-364-3065 for more information. All individuals will be screened and must have an appointment. The local health departments do not have a supply of swabs for the community, call your primary care provider or the community hotline.
  • If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated. Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.
  • When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names of close contacts, we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts.
  • If you are experiencing ANY COVID-19 related symptoms STAY HOME! Do not go to work, do not go to the store, do not go anywhere, YOU are spreading the virus. STAY HOME!

Click here to view the Genesee and Orleans County online map of confirmed cases

 

Morning News Briefing

The number of COVID-19 cases in Genesee County took its largest one day jump over the weekend.
The health department reported 30 new cases Saturday afternoon, but 29 of those cases came from the Federal Detention Center in Batavia. All of them were detainees.
There were no new cases added on Sunday.
The county’s total is now 122 positive cases since the outbreak began.
There have been two deaths from coronavirus in Genesee County, two in Orleans County and four in Wyoming County.

Governor Cuomo says the state’s coronavirus curve is descending, but he’s still urging New Yorkers to keep following social distancing guidelines.
The governor says things will only keep improving if people continue to do their part in preventing the spread of the illness.

This week, New York State will be looking to test thousands of people for coronavirus antibodies. Officials are trying to figure out who may have the antibodies that could be used to help others battle the deadly illness. The tests will also help determine the percentage of the population that could be immune to the virus. Results can take a day or two to come back and the state is hoping to have the data fully analyzed by the end of the week.

To help replenish the Salvation Army food pantry, Northgate Free Methodist Church will be hosting a food collection drive every Monday.
You can drop off food donations at Northgate Free Methodist Church, North Campus, on Bank Street Road Mondays between 10 and 4.
The Salvation Army reports its food pantry supply is exhausted. The Army says it is serving three to four times the number of families it served before the COVID-19 outbreak.

The next food distribution at Northgate is scheduled for this Wednesday morning. It is another drive-thru distribution. Only one person should make the pick-up and have ID ready if picking up for more than one family.

The price of gas is continuing to dip across Western New York. Triple A says the average cost for a gallon of regular gas is $2.27. That’s down
16-cents from a month ago.

COVID-19 Daily UPDATE: April 18, 2020

The Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments have received 35 more COVID-19 cases. Orleans has 5 new cases and Genesee has 30. Contact tracing has been initiated.

Of the total new positive cases for Genesee County, 29 non-community spread cases were confirmed at the Batavia ICE Facility. The individuals are detainees and all precautions are being followed to further protect other detainees and staff.
Contact tracing has been initiated and all who have had direct contact with the individuals will be notified by Health Department staff.

“We are also saddened to report a second death related to COVID-19 has occurred in Orleans County,” stated Lynne Johnson, Orleans County Legislative Chairwoman. “Our sincerest condolences go out to the family and friends of this individual. Our prayers are with the grieving family. These are our neighbors who are passing away.”

There is currently no further information to release on ages and location. Mapping to include the positive cases from the weekend will be updated on Monday afternoon.

We encourage everyone to continue social distancing and staying home. If you need to go out, for essential needs, only one person should be running those errands so as not to risk further exposure. Face coverings are also to be worn when out in public. This is not a time for gatherings, play dates or date night. The life you save may be you or a loved one.

COVID-19 Daily Update: April 17, 2020

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE

April 22, 2020

New Cases

·         As of 2:00 p.m. today:

o   Genesee County received 5 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 92 positive cases

§  Four positive cases reside in Batavia and one resides in Pembroke.

§  One individual is in their 20’s, one individual is in their 30’s, one individual is in their 50’s, one individual is in their 60’s, and one individual is in their 90’s.

§  1 of the positive individuals was on quarantine prior to becoming symptomatic.

§  3 of the total active positive cases are hospitalized.

 

o   Orleans County: 8 new positive case  of COVID-19 for a total of 43

§  Of the new positive cases today, 7 live in Albion and 1 lives in Ridgeway

§  We have one individual in their 50’s, 2 individuals in their 60’s, 2 individuals in their 70’s and 3 individuals in their 80’s.

§  One has recovered and has been released from mandatory isolation

§  4 of the total active positive cases are hospitalized.

 

·         Due to the current limited swabbing kits, there continue to be guidelines in place for primary care providers to order COVID-19 swabbing.  This is based upon screening for high risk categories.  Contact your primary care provider first to discuss symptoms and ability to be swabbed.

·         Contact tracing has been initiated for all new cases.  Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms become present).

·         If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated.  Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.

·         When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names of close contacts, we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts.

·         If you are experiencing ANY COVID-19 related symptoms STAY HOME!  Do not go to work, do not go to the store, do not go anywhere, YOU are spreading the virus.  STAY HOME!

Click here to view the Genesee and Orleans County online map of confirmed cases

OPERATIONAL UPDATES

·         Because COVID-19 is circulating locally, we can’t stress enough how important social distancing is and that EVERYONE needs to take this seriously and stay home! It is your social and civic responsibility to protect yourselves and others.

o   If you must shop for essentials, such as food, necessary household supplies or prescriptions, shop solo!  Wear a face covering and wash or sanitize your hands frequently.

 

Mental Health

 ·         Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations and having to socially distance yourself from someone you love can be difficult. Below are resources that can help you connect to a professional that can help you through these challenging times:

o   Care + Crisis Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text  ‘Talk’ to 741741

o   New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling

o   Head Space:  A mindfulness app called Headspace is offering some meditations to listen to for free to ease minds in such a stressful time. The app is free to download and includes meditations, sleep, and movement exercises to help with the varying emotions you may be feeling. The app does include in-app purchases. https://www.headspace.com/covid-19

NEW YORK STATE RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE

·         The Governor issued an executive order requiring all people in New York to wear masks or face coverings, including taking public or private transportation or riding in for-hire vehicles to begin at 8:00 p.m. tonight.   Coverings are to protect others from you when out in public.  You are still to do your best to social distance at least 6 feet and not congregate.  You will need to be careful removing them from your face so as not to be exposed to any germs from the outside.  Once removed, make sure you wash them in hot water, if able, and dry in a hot dryer.  Wash your hands immediately after removing the mask.  For more information about masks go to reliable sights such as the CDC:  https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth-face-coverings.html

·         The Governor’s Executive Order directs employers to provide essential workers with masks free of charge to wear when interacting with the public.

·         The Governor issued an executive order requiring nursing homes to inform family members of residents of COVID-19 cases.

·         New Yorkers who have recovered from COVID-19 are encouraged to donate blood. Here’s information on how to donate or for the American Red Cross Donation Program, click here.

·         The Governor has extended the Disaster Emergency through May 15, 2020.  https://www.governor.ny.gov/news/no-20216-continuing-temporary-suspension-and-modification-laws-relating-disaster-emergency

·         Complaints regarding businesses are being referred to the State Department of Labor via online form https://labor.ny.gov/workerprotection/laborstandards/coronavirus-complaints.shtm or phone:  1-822-789-0470.

·         New York State on PAUSE: To assist local authorities with enforcement of these orders, the Governor established the New York State PAUSE Enforcement Assistance Task Force where individuals can file complaints regarding the operation of non-essential businesses or gatherings 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Click here to file a complaint online. You may also call 1-833-789-0470. Businesses that are not in compliance with the Governor’s executive order may be penalized.

COVID-19 RELIABLE SOURCES

·         New York State Department of Health – click here

·         CDC – click here

·         Genesee County Health Department – click here

·         Orleans County Health Department – click here

·         NY State of Health – click here

·         If you believe an employer is violating either existing labor laws or recently issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo, please contact the NYS Attorney General’s office at (212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov

@GOHEALTHNY SOCIAL MEDIA

Follow us on social media to receive reliable information about COVID-19.

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·         Twitter

·         Instagram

·         YouTube

·         Ready Genesee

·         Orleans Aware

 

Morning News Briefing

New York State’s so-called pause order will remain in effect until May 15th – it has been extended two more weeks.
This means non-essential businesses will remain closed and the public is urged to remain at home.  The governor’s previous executive order was scheduled to expire April 29th.


Starting today, New Yorkers will be required to wear masks or cloth coverings on their face while out in public. The governor’s executive order is yet another effort to try and slow the spread of the coronavirus.

Seven new cases of coronavirus reported in Genesee County. The total number of infections since the outbreak began now stands at 87.
Three county residents are hospitalized with the virus.

The Genesee County Health Department is scheduled to issue its daily COVID-19 update this afternoon.
Public Health Director Paul Pettit will issue his report via a video meeting.  WBTA will carry Pettit’s remarks live this afternoon at 4 o’clock.

Cori Shearing

 

A Wyoming County man has been arrested on charges of vehicular manslaughter and drunk driving following a crash earlier this week.
State Police said 20 year old Michael Conrad was speeding on Pleasant Valley Road in Wethersfield late Tuesday morning. Troopers said he lost control of his and crashed into several trees.
A passenger in Conrad’s car, 20 year old Cori Shearing of Pike, was pronounced dead at the scene.
Conrad was treated at ECMC and then locked up in Wyoming County Jail pending bail.

 

Both the University at Buffalo and some Western New York hospitals are seeking plasma donors. Researchers want to find out if people who have recovered from coronavirus have antibodies in their blood that could help patients who are critically ill due to the disease. Doctors say while the treatment method isn’t 100 percent proven, it could help save lives until a coronavirus vaccine is available.

COVID-19 Update: April 16, 2020

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE

April 16, 2020

New Cases

·         As of 2:00 p.m. today:

o   Genesee County received 7 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 87 positive cases

§  Five positive cases reside in Batavia, one resides in Bergen, and one resides in Darien.

§  One individual is in their 20’s, three individuals are in their 30’s, one individual is in their 60’s, and two individuals are in their 90’s.

§  3 of the positive individuals were on quarantine prior to becoming symptomatic.

§  3 of the total active positive cases are hospitalized.

 

o   Orleans County: 1 new positive case  of COVID-19 for a total of 35

§  Of the new positive cases today, one lives in Albion

§  One individual is in their 80’s

§  Two have recovered and have been released from mandatory isolation

§  3 of the total active positive cases are hospitalized.

§  Orleans County received notification of the first COVID-19 related death.

 ·         Due to the current limited swabbing kits, there continue to be guidelines in place for primary care providers to order COVID-19 swabbing.  This is based upon screening for high risk categories.  Contact your primary care provider first to discuss symptoms and ability to be swabbed.

·         Contact tracing has been initiated for all new cases.  Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms become present).

·         If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated.  Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.

·         When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names of close contacts, we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts.

·         If you are experiencing ANY COVID-19 related symptoms STAY HOME!  Do not go to work, do not go to the store, do not go anywhere, YOU are spreading the virus.  STAY HOME!

Click here to view the Genesee and Orleans County online map of confirmed cases

 

OPERATIONAL UPDATES

·         Because COVID-19 is circulating locally, we can’t stress enough how important social distancing is and that EVERYONE needs to take this seriously and stay home! It is your social and civic responsibility to protect yourselves and others.

o   If you must shop for essentials, such as food, necessary household supplies or prescriptions, shop solo!  Wear a face covering and wash or sanitize your hands frequently.

Mental Health

 ·         Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations and having to socially distance yourself from someone you love can be difficult. Below are resources that can help you connect to a professional that can help you through these challenging times:

o   Care + Crisis Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text  ‘Talk’ to 741741

o   New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling

o   Head Space:  A mindfulness app called Headspace is offering some meditations to listen to for free to ease minds in such a stressful time. The app is free to download and includes meditations, sleep, and movement exercises to help with the varying emotions you may be feeling. The app does include in-app purchases. https://www.headspace.com/covid-19

 

 

Order Extended Limiting Use of City Parks

From: Batavia City Manager Dr. Martin Moore:

I issue the following emergency order(s) for the period of April 17, 2020 through April 21, 2020. This
order continues the following issued under Emergency Order #2, which was effective April 11, 2020
.
1. All Public Parks within the City Limits of the City of Batavia, New York remain open to public
use from 7a.m. to dusk. During the times that public parks are open, State of New York
declared restrictions on congregating will be observed. In addition, all playground areas,
tennis courts, pickle ball courts; basketball courts, picnic pavilions, splash pads, and other
park facilities that are used for activities that constitute congregating are closed to public
use.

First COVID-19 Death in Orleans County

“Today, I am reporting that an individual (over 65 years of age and who had been under mandatory isolation) who tested positive for COVID-19 has passed away,” stated Paul Pettit, Director of the Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments. “This is our first confirmed death related to COVID-19 in Orleans County.

Due to privacy issues, I will not be releasing further details about this individual. I would like to express my sincerest sympathy to the individual’s family and friends during this difficult time.”

“We are saddened at this loss and want to extend our condolences to the family and friends of the patient,” Lynne Johnson, Chairman of the Orleans County Legislature said. “The nurses, physicians and others who had been involved in this person’s treatment are also grieving. I want to commend our providers and employees for the extraordinary care they provided and to let them know how proud we are of their ongoing service and commitment to all our residents during this unprecedented and difficult time.”

“We continue to encourage social distancing, use of face coverings and for residents to stay home as much as possible, especially if you have older family members or family with underlying health conditions,” stated Pettit. “If you are unwell with any symptoms, please do not have contact with our most vulnerable population. Keep in touch by phone, FaceTime, cards, and/or letters so your loved ones know they are being thought of. Ask other family or friends who are not sick or potentially exposed to check in on your loved ones and/or assist with errands.”

Morning News Briefing

Genesee County’s Public Health director says he is still not getting the personal protective equipment he needs.
Paul Pettit says he is receiving only a percentage of the PPE’s is has ordered.
He did report some good news. Pettit says the department’s tracking shows a gradual slowing of active cases. He cited last week’s daily new cases were reaching 10 a day. That figure is down to 2 or 3.

You need to finds a mask or cloth covering for your face, by tomorrow.
Governor Cuomo has ordered all New Yorkers to wear a mask or face covering whenever you are out in public. Health experts say there’s not a lot of evidence showing masks can protect people from coronavirus, they are an effective tool in reducing the spread of germs.

The latest local coronavirus numbers: three new cases reported in Batavia.
There was one additional COVID-19 death reported yesterday.
That makes two Genesee County residents to die from the virus since the outbreak began.

There are now a total of 80 positive tests for the virus locally.
Included in that number are 11 cases from the Federal Detention Facility in Batavia.

Getting tested for the coronavirus is about to get a bit easier for those living in Monroe County.
A drive-thru testing site is expected to open tomorrow in Rochester.
It’ll be located at the Walmart on Hudson Avenue.
Anyone experiencing coronavirus symptoms will be able to set up an appointment to get screened. Tests at the site will be conducted by Quest Diagnostics, a private company.
Testing is available in Genesee County to patients who show COVID-19 symptoms. Testing with pre-screening is being done in the UMMC parking lot and by some personal physicians.

A young Byron man caught, allegedly, with his hand in the candy jar.
Deputies arrested 22 year old Mark Knickerbocker of West Main Street Road Byron with taking a box of candy from Crosby’s in Batavia.
The candy was valued at $48. He was given a court appearance ticket.

COVID-19 Update: April 15, 2020

 

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE

April 15, 2020

New Cases

  • As of 2:00 p.m. today:
    • Genesee County received 3 new positive case of COVID-19 for a total of 80 positive cases
      • The three positive cases reside in Batavia.
      • One individual is in their 20’s, one individual is in their 40’s, and one individual is in their 90’s.
      • The positive individuals were not on quarantine prior to becoming symptomatic.
      • 2 of the total active positive cases are hospitalized.
      • Genesee County received notification of the second COVID-19 related death.
    • Orleans County: 3 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 34
      • Of the new positive cases today, one lives in Ridgeway, one lives in Gaines, and 1 lives in Murray
      • The ages include 1 individual is in their 40’s, 1 individual is in their 70’s and 1 individual is in their 90’s.
      • Two have recovered and have been released from mandatory isolation
      • 3 of the total active positive cases are hospitalized.
  • Due to the current limited swabbing kits, there continue to be guidelines in place for primary care providers to order COVID-19 swabbing. This is based upon screening for high risk categories. Contact your primary care provider first to discuss symptoms and ability to be swabbed.
  • Contact tracing has been initiated for all new cases. Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms become present).
  • If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated. Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.
  • When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names of close contacts, we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts.
  • If you are experiencing ANY COVID-19 related symptoms STAY HOME! Do not go to work, do not go to the store, do not go anywhere, YOU are spreading the virus. STAY HOME!

Click here to view the Genesee and Orleans County online map of confirmed cases

OPERATIONAL UPDATES
  • Because COVID-19 is circulating locally, we can’t stress enough how important social distancing is and that EVERYONE needs to take this seriously and stay home! It is your social and civic responsibility to protect yourselves and others.
    • If you must shop for essentials, such as food, necessary household supplies or prescriptions, shop solo! Wear a face covering and wash or sanitize your hands frequently.
  • Using cloth face coverings are recommended to protect others from you. Remember to wear one when you are out in public. You will need to be careful removing them from your face so as not to be exposed to any germs from the outside. Once removed, make sure you wash them in hot water, if able, and dry in a hot dryer. Wash your hands immediately after removing the mask. For more information about masks go to reliable sights such as the CDC: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth-face-coverings.html

Mental Health

  • Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations and having to socially distance yourself from someone you love can be difficult. Below are resources that can help you connect to a professional that can help you through these challenging times:
    • Care + Crisis Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text ‘Talk’ to 741741
    • New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling
    • Head Space: A mindfulness app called Headspace is offering some meditations to listen to for free to ease minds in such a stressful time. The app is free to download and includes meditations, sleep, and movement exercises to help with the varying emotions you may be feeling. The app does include in-app purchases. https://www.headspace.com/covid-19
NEW YORK STATE RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE
COVID-19 RELIABLE SOURCES
  • New York State Department of Health – click here
  • CDC – click here
  • Genesee County Health Department – click here
  • Orleans County Health Department – click here
  • NY State of Health – click here
  • If you believe an employer is violating either existing labor laws or recently issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo, please contact the NYS Attorney General’s office at (212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov
@GOHEALTHNY SOCIAL MEDIA
Follow us on social media to receive reliable information about COVID-19.

 

Second COVID-19 Death in Genesee County

“It is with great sadness that I am reporting the second confirmed death related to COVID-19 in Genesee County” stated Paul Pettit, Public Health Director of Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments. The individual was over the age of 65 and resided in the central part of Genesee County. “Due to privacy issues, I will not be releasing further information about this individual. Our deepest condolences go out to the family and friends of the patient.”

The Genesee County Health Department is conducting contact tracing. Close contacts have been notified of their potential exposure to COVID- 19, and have been placed under mandatory quarantine to monitor for symptoms. Individuals under mandatory quarantine who develop symptoms will be swabbed. The Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments are following guidance provided by the NYSDOH and CDC.

“As COVID-19 continues to spread within our communities, we must do everything we can to keep each other safe” said Pettit. “Please remain home unless you are an essential worker or need to purchase essential household items. In that case, designate one (1) household member to do the shopping. We must work together as a community to stop the spread.”

Morning News Briefing

One new positive case of COVID-19 reported in Batavia. This brings the total cases in Genesee County to 77. Officials say the latest case is an individual in their 30’s.
A map of COVID-19 cases in Genesee county shows the vast number of them…51…are in the city and town of Batavia, which are the population centers of the county.

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in New York State now tops 200,000. The death toll is closing in on 11,000.
There is a growing number of coronavirus outbreaks and deaths at nursing homes statewide. The State Health Commissioner says most of the individuals who have passed away at those facilities were elderly and had underlying health problems.

T F Browns Restaurant has closed, at least until the coronavirus outbreak is over.
The popular eatery has been open for take-out.
Owner Rick Mancuso says he is shutting down completely until the state allows him to reopen as a full service restaurant.

The Salvation Army in Batavia says emergency food supplies are very limited.
They are asking that that their patrons only access the food panty when necessary.
The food distribution is held at the rear door of the Salvation Army Headquarters on East Main Street Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9:30a.m. to 12:30p.m.
You are asked to remain in your car and be prepared to show ID.

The owners of the Buffalo Bills and Buffalo Sabres have reacted to the loss of business caused by the coronavirus.
Pegula Sports Entertainment has announced 21 people have been laid off and another 104 furloughed, three dozen others are taking a temporary pay cut.
The company says it will continue to pay health insurance for all sidelined employees.

COVID-19 Local Update: April 14, 2020

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE

April 14, 2020

New Cases

 

·         As of 2:00 p.m. today:

o   Genesee County received 1 new positive case of COVID-19 for a total of 77 positive cases

§  The individual resides in Batavia.

§  The individual is in their 30s.

§  The positive individual was not on quarantine prior to becoming symptomatic.

§  2 of the positive cases are hospitalized.

 

o   Orleans County: 2 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 31

§  Of the new positive cases today, one lives in Albion and 1 lives in Barre

§  The ages include 1 individual is under 20 and 1 individual is in their 80’s.

§  Three have recovered and have been released from mandatory isolation

§  3 of the positive cases are hospitalized.

 

·         Mapping Update:  Today we are adding Wyoming County mapping.  Genesee Orleans County will not be making any statement related to Wyoming County.  Please contact the Wyoming County Health Department for any inquiries.

 

·         Due to the current limited swabbing kits, there continue to be guidelines in place for primary care providers to order COVID-19 swabbing.  This is based upon screening for high risk categories.  Contact your primary care provider first to discuss symptoms and ability to be swabbed.

·         Contact tracing has been initiated for all new cases.  Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms become present).

·         If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated.  Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.

·         When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names of close contacts, we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts.

·         If you are experiencing ANY COVID-19 related symptoms STAY HOME!  Do not go to work, do not go to the store, do not go anywhere, YOU are spreading the virus.  STAY HOME!

Click here to view the Genesee and Orleans County online map of confirmed cases

 

OPERATIONAL UPDATES

State of Emergency To Be Extended:  Due to the Governor’s Executive Order Dated April 12, 2020 extending the Disaster Emergency through May 12 2020, both counties are extending the State of Emergency for the same time period.

·         Because COVID-19 is circulating locally, we can’t stress enough how important social distancing is and that EVERYONE needs to take this seriously and stay home! It is your social and civic responsibility to protect yourselves and others.

o   If you must shop for essentials, such as food, necessary household supplies or prescriptions, shop solo!  Wear a face covering and wash or sanitize your hands frequently.

·         Using cloth face coverings are recommended to protect others from you.  Remember to wear one when you are out in public.  You will need to be careful removing them from your face so as not to be exposed to any germs from the outside.  Once removed, make sure you wash them in hot water, if able, and dry in a hot dryer.  Wash your hands immediately after removing the mask.  For more information about masks go to reliable sights such as the CDC:  https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth-face-coverings.html

 

Mental Health

·         Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations and having to socially distance yourself from someone you love can be difficult. Below are resources that can help you connect to a professional that can help you through these challenging times:

o   Care + Crisis Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text  ‘Talk’ to 741741

o   New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling

o   Head Space:  A mindfulness app called Headspace is offering some meditations to listen to for free to ease minds in such a stressful time. The app is free to download and includes meditations, sleep, and movement exercises to help with the varying emotions you may be feeling. The app does include in-app purchases. https://www.headspace.com/covid-19

 

NEW YORK STATE RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE

·         The Governor’s Executive Order will direct employers to provide essential workers with mask free of charge to wear when interacting with the public.

·         The Governor has extended the Disaster Emergency through May 12, 2020.  https://www.governor.ny.gov/news/no-20216-continuing-temporary-suspension-and-modification-laws-relating-disaster-emergency

·         Complaints regarding businesses are being referred to the State Department of Labor via online form https://labor.ny.gov/workerprotection/laborstandards/coronavirus-complaints.shtm or phone:  1-822-789-0470.

·         New York State on PAUSE: To assist local authorities with enforcement of these orders, the Governor established the New York State PAUSE Enforcement Assistance Task Force where individuals can file complaints regarding the operation of non-essential businesses or gatherings 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Click here to file a complaint online. You may also call 1-833-789-0470. Businesses that are not in compliance with the Governor’s executive order may be penalized.

COVID-19 RELIABLE SOURCES

·         New York State Department of Health – click here

·         CDC – click here

·         Genesee County Health Department – click here

·         Orleans County Health Department – click here

·         NY State of Health – click here

·         If you believe an employer is violating either existing labor laws or recently issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo, please contact the NYS Attorney General’s office at (212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov

@GOHEALTHNY SOCIAL MEDIA

Follow us on social media to receive reliable information about COVID-19.

·         Facebook

·         Twitter

·         Instagram

·         YouTube

·         Ready Genesee

·         Orleans Aware

 

Morning News Briefing

For the past several years Batavia has been getting close to $450,000 dollars from New York State, so-called VLT aid. It is supposed to cover the city’s added expenses for having Batavia Downs within its border.
This year, the VLT money was taken out of the budget …a move that would have resulted in a 7 ½ percent city property tax increase.
That VLT money was finally restored to the state budget but council members last night said they’ll believe it when they see it.
Council, meeting in a video conference session last night, expressed concern over future budgets citing COVID-19 impacts on sales tax and other revenues.

Latest coronavirus numbers from the county health department:
Two new positive cases: one from the city.
Of the tow new cases one person is in their 30’s, the other in their 90’s.
The total number of infections in Genesee County: 76.

The death toll due to the coronavirus has reached a grim milestone in New York State. Officials say over 10,000 residents have died after becoming infected. Meanwhile, the number of confirmed cases of the virus is more than 195,000.

Devon Wright

Batavia Police asking for help in locating a person of interest in last week’s car-pedestrian accident on Highland Park. Police say they want to talk with Devon Wright. No further information about him was released.
One man was injured last Wednesday when a car backed into a house…and the driver fled the scene.

The High Wind Warning for Genesee County expired hours early.
The 60 mile per hour gusts, fortunately, never materialized.
The National Weather Service reported that peak gusts in Batavia only reached the mid 40-mile per hour range.
The warning was canceled at 9:00 last night.

COVID-19 Local Update: April 13, 2020

 

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE

April 13, 2020

New Cases

  • As of 2:00 p.m. today:
    • Genesee County received 2 new positive case of COVID-19 for a total of 76 positive cases
      • The two individuals reside in Batavia.
      • One of the individuals is in their 30s, one individual is in their 90s
      • One of our positive cases has been identified as an Erie County resident. Therefore, our numbers have decreased by 1.
      • None of the positive individuals were on quarantine prior to becoming symptomatic.
    • Orleans County: 1 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 29
      • Of the positive cases over the weekend, including today, we have 2 from Lyndonville, 1 from Murray, 1 from Albion and 1 from Ridgeway.
      • The ages include 1 individual in their 30’s, 2 individuals in their 50’s, one individual in their 60’s and one individual in their 70’s.
      • One more person has recovered and has been released from mandatory isolation.
      • None of the positive individuals were on quarantine prior to becoming symptomatic.
  • Mapping Update: Today we are adding the ages and the general area of where individuals who tested positive reside in the same format as our positive cases. You will now be able to see the cumulative age breakdown of the confirmed cases on the map as well as the breakdown by choosing the individual county from the upper right drop down box. Monday map updates will include the weekend data.
  • Due to the current limited swabbing kits, there continue to be guidelines in place for primary care providers to order COVID-19 swabbing. This is based upon screening for high risk categories. Contact your primary care provider first to discuss symptoms and ability to be swabbed.
  • Contact tracing has been initiated for all new cases. Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms become present).
  • If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated. Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.
  • When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names of close contacts, we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts.
  • If you are experiencing ANY COVID-19 related symptoms STAY HOME! Do not go to work, do not go to the store, do not go anywhere, YOU are spreading the virus. STAY HOME!

Click HERE to view the Genesee and Orleans online map of confirmed cases 

OPERATIONAL UPDATES
State of Emergency To Be Extended

  • Due to the Governor’s Executive Order Dated April 12, 2020 extending the Disaster Emergency through May 12 2020, both counties are extending the State of Emergency for the same time period.
  • Because COVID-19 is circulating locally, we can’t stress enough how important social distancing is and that EVERYONE needs to take this seriously and stay home! It is your social and civic responsibility to protect yourselves and others.
    • If you must shop for essentials, such as food, necessary household supplies or prescriptions, shop solo! Wear a face covering and wash or sanitize your hands frequently.
  • Using cloth face coverings are recommended to protect others from you. Remember to wear one when you are out in public. You will need to be careful removing them from your face so as not to be exposed to any germs from the outside. Once removed, make sure you wash them in hot water, if able, and dry in a hot dryer. Wash your hands immediately after removing the mask. For more information about masks go to reliable sights such as the CDC: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth-face-coverings.html

Mental Health

  • Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations and having to socially distance yourself from someone you love can be difficult. Below are resources that can help you connect to a professional that can help you through these challenging times:
    • Care + Crisis Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text ‘Talk’ to 741741
    • New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling
    • Head Space: A mindfulness app called Headspace is offering some meditations to listen to for free to ease minds in such a stressful time. The app is free to download and includes meditations, sleep, and movement exercises to help with the varying emotions you may be feeling. The app does include in-app purchases. https://www.headspace.com/covid-19
NEW YORK STATE CASES / RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE
COVID-19 RELIABLE SOURCES
  • New York State Department of Health – click here
  • CDC – click here
  • Genesee County Health Department – click here
  • Orleans County Health Department – click here
  • NY State of Health – click here
  • If you believe an employer is violating either existing labor laws or recently issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo, please contact the NYS Attorney General’s office at (212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov
@GOHEALTHNY SOCIAL MEDIA
Follow us on social media to receive reliable information about COVID-19.

 

Person of Interest Sought in Car / Pedestrian Incident

Devon Wright

The Batavia Police Department is seeking public assistance in locating Devon Wright. Wright is a person of interest in the car/pedestrian accident which occurred on Highland Park on 04/08/2020. Anyone with information in reference to his whereabouts may contact Detective Matt Wojtaszczyk at 585-345-6357 or the Batavia Police Department at 585-345-6350, the confidential tip line at 585-345-6370 or online HERE.

No other information can be released at this time due to the ongoing investigation.

(Original News Release Issued on 04/09/2020 Follows:)

On 04/08/2020 at approximately 8:54 PM, the Batavia Police Department responded to the area of 15 Highland Park for a vehicle that backed into a house. Upon arrival, Officers located the vehicle and a subject which had been struck by it near the area as reported. The person was transported to Strong where they were treated and later released. The incident is being investigated as a criminal matter and Detectives been following up on several leads. There is no threat to the general public at this time. No further information can be released at this time due to the ongoing investigation.

Morning News Briefing

The National Weather Service has posted a High Wind Warning for Genesee, Orleans and Wyoming Counties. Winds out of the southwest 30 to 40 miles per hour are expected, gusting up to 60 miles per hour.
The warning officially goes into effect at 10AM this morning and remains active until 2AM tomorrow morning.
National Grid is urging its customers to be prepared for power outages today. Strong winds are expected across New York which could knock down power lines. The utility company says it already has crews ready to respond.

Genesee County Sheriff’s deputies announce the arrest of a Stafford man for allegedly spitting into the face of a public health official and a nurse.
22 Year old Jordin Schultz of Main Road Stafford was charged with menacing and reckless endangerment.
Deputies said the incident happened back on April 2nd.

New cases of COVID-19 reported in Genesee County over the weekend.
Four new positive cases were added Saturday, one more on Sunday.
The total now is 74.

Genesee County Sheriff’s deputies announce the arrest of a Stafford man for allegedly spitting into the face of a public health official and a nurse.
22 Year old Jordin Schultz of Main Road Stafford was charged with menacing and reckless endangerment.
Deputies said the incident happened back on April 2nd.

Western New York drivers are still seeing some savings at the gas pump. According to Triple A, the average cost for a gallon of regular gas is $2.24. That’s down four cents from last week and 24-cents from this time last month.
The national average for a gallon is $1.86.

COVID-19 Local Update April 11, 2020

UPDATE

April 11, 2020

The Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments have received 6 more COVID-19 cases.  Orleans has 2 new cases and Genesee has 4.  Contact tracing has been initiated.  There is currently no further information to release on ages and location.  Mapping to include the positive cases from the weekend will be updated on Monday afternoon.

We encourage everyone to continue social distancing and staying home.  If you need to go out, for essential needs, only one person should be running those errands so as not to risk further exposure.  This is not a time for gatherings or date night.  The life you save may be you or a loved one.  We can do this together…we are one day closer to this being a memory.

WBTA Weekend News

A high wind warning has been posted for Genesee, Orleans and Wyoming counties beginning Monday morning.
The National Weather Service says the warning goes into effect at 10AM Monday through 2AM on Tuesday.
Southwest winds 30 to 45 mph with gusts up to 70 mph are expected.

 

Coronvirus testing lags in Genesee County.
Public Health Director Paul Pettit says that testing available on demand will be the only way to insure that the war against COVID-19 is won.
Current supplies of test swabs are too low for mass testing
Pettit announced late yesterday that there were seven new cases of coronavirus in Genesee County, bringing the total number to 70.
He said that maintaining social distancing and avoiding close gatherings is the best way to slow the spread of the disease. Pettit said he realizes the added challenges families will face in this regard during the Holiday weekend.

 

The Veterans Administration confirms two patients at the Batavia V-A have tested positive for the coronavirus. The V-A says it has taken measures to mitigate the risk of transmission to other patients and staff.
Four confirmed positive cases of coronavirus are reported at the Federal Detention Facility in Batavia.

 

The first person to die from Coronavirus in Genesee County was a Batavia native who suffered serious health issues and was the innocent victim of a police incident triggered by his neighbor.
67 year old David Zanghi Senior died from the virus on March 27th. He had suffered from kidney failure, diabetes and heart disease.
Mr. Zanghi lived on Liberty Street in Batavia. He lived in a downstairs apartment lwhen last November a domestic incident erupted upstairs.
The man living there held police at bay with a knife and a BB gun.
Zanghi’s apartment was heavily damaged by tear gas during the incident.

 

A note from the New York State Department of Labor.
If you are waiting for a call back from your unemployment insurance claim that call may show-up on caller ID from simply “private caller.”
The reason, most state unemployment workers are working from their homes.
The department urges you to answer those calls.
Anyone calling from the Department of Labor will verify their identity by providing the date you filed your Unemployment Insurance application and the type of claim you filed.”

COVID-19 Local Update Apr 10, 2020

 

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE  

Friday, April 10, 2020

New Cases

  • As of 2:00 p.m. today:
    • Genesee County received 7 new positive case of COVID-19 for a total of 70 positive cases
      • Six of the individuals reside in the central part of the County and one individual resides in the western part of the County.
      • Two individual are in their 20s, one individual is in their 30s, one individual is in the 60’s, and three individuals are in their 70’s.
      • Three of the new positive cases were under precautionary or mandatory quarantine when they became symptomatic.
    • Orleans County: 0 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 24
      • One of our positive individuals has recovered and is out of isolation.
  • Mapping Update: Today we are adding the ages and the general area of where individuals who tested positive reside in the same format as our positive cases. You will now be able to see the cumulative age breakdown of the confirmed cases on the map as well as the breakdown by choosing the individual county from the upper right drop down box.
  • Due to the current limited swabbing kits, there continue to be guidelines in place for primary care providers to order COVID-19 swabbing. This is based upon screening for high risk categories. Contact your primary care provider first to discuss symptoms and ability to be swabbed.
  • Contact tracing has been initiated for all new cases. Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms become present).
    • For clarification, the local health departments do not lead the contact tracing for positive results to individuals located in facilities regulated by another agency (e.g. federal or state) however we partner with those agencies and provide assistance as needed. We do receive the positive numbers of any resident who lives in our counties (including these facilities) and are included in our totals. Any community contacts (employees) are followed by the local health department where they reside.
  • If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated. Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.
  • When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names of close contacts, we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts.

Click here to view the Genesee and Orleans County online map of confirmed cases

OPERATIONAL UPDATES
Passover / Holy Week / Easter Holiday

  • We understand this is generally a time of family gatherings, however the NYS on PAUSE guidance is still in effect and all gatherings of individuals of any size for any reasons are canceled or postponed until at least April 29, 2020. (Executive Order 202.10) Remember that any non-essential gatherings of individuals of any size for any reason (e.g. parties, celebrations or other social events) are also canceled or postponed at this time. Many houses of worship have been live streaming their services which allows them to share their message and touch base with their congregations. As challenging as this is to do, especially over the holidays, it is vital everyone stays home. Consider celebrating with a phone call, or a social app so you can see one another and remember the life you may be saving by staying home could be one of your loved ones. This is temporary.
  • Because COVID-19 is circulating locally, we can’t stress enough how important social distancing is and that EVERYONE needs to take this seriously and stay home! It is your social and civic responsibility to protect yourselves and others.
  • GO Health Minute: This is an opportunity for our staff, community leaders and others to provide some factual information, some tips on staying calm or how to virtually connect with family and friends and guidance. Each segment is short and to the point and follows the guidelines of the Genesee Orleans County Health Departments’ mission to work collaboratively ensuring conditions that promote optimal health for individuals and the communities we serve. Please take a ‘minute’ to view one of our ‘Minutes’ on our Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube platforms and our websites.


The Use of Cloth Face Coverings

  • The CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies). The cloth face cover is meant to protect other people in case you are infected. Recent studies have suggested that COVID-19 may be spread by people who are not showing symptoms. Continue to keep about 6 feet between yourself and others. The cloth face cover is not a substitute for social distancing or proper handwashing.
  • The cloth face cover should:
    • fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
    • be secured with ties or ear loops
    • include multiple layers of fabric
    • allow for breathing without restriction
    • be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape
  • The cloth face coverings recommended are not surgical masks or N-95 respirators. Those are critical supplies that must continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders, as recommended by current CDC guidance.
  • Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, is unconscious, or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.

Mental Health

  • Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations and having to socially distance yourself from someone you love can be difficult. Below are resources that can help you connect to a professional that can help you through these challenging times:
    • Care + Crisis Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text ‘Talk’ to 741741
    • New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling
    • Head Space: A mindfulness app called Headspace is offering some meditations to listen to for free to ease minds in such a stressful time. The app is free to download and includes meditations, sleep, and movement exercises to help with the varying emotions you may be feeling. The app does include in-app purchases. https://www.headspace.com/covid-19
NEW YORK STATE CASES / RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE
  • There is now updated guidance on essential and non-essential business clarifying that golf courses and the use of boat launches and marinas for recreational vessels are not considered essential and are to close.
  • Complaints regarding businesses are being referred to the State Department of Labor via online form https://labor.ny.gov/workerprotection/laborstandards/coronavirus-complaints.shtm or phone: 1-822-789-0470.
  • New York State on PAUSE: To assist local authorities with enforcement of these orders, the Governor established the New York State PAUSE Enforcement Assistance Task Force where individuals can file complaints regarding the operation of non-essential businesses or gatherings 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Click here to file a complaint online. You may also call 1-833-789-0470. Businesses that are not in compliance with the Governor’s executive order may be penalized.
COVID-19 RELIABLE SOURCES
  • New York State Department of Health – click here
  • CDC – click here
  • Genesee County Health Department – click here
  • Orleans County Health Department – click here
  • NY State of Health – click here
  • If you believe an employer is violating either existing labor laws or recently issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo, please contact the NYS Attorney General’s office at (212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov

 

Morning News Briefing

Genesee County’s COVID-19 infections now total 63. Nine more cases were added yesterday…that’s makes 40 new cases in the past four days.
It has also been reported that four detainees at the Federal Detention Facility in Batavia have tested positive for the corona virus….two of the detainees are from Honduras, one from Somalia and one from Pakistan.

With word that six-point-six million people filed for unemployment last week….come widespread accounts that the state Department of Labor computer systems are overloaded and failing. Governor Andrew Cuomo says the state has hired 1,000 people to help unemployed New Yorkers:
The State Department of Labor has just created a new online application system. The departments says most applicants will be contacted directly within 72 hours of filing an unemployment claim.

The unidentified victim of car pedestrian accident on Highland Park was not seriously injured.
Police have reported that – while the victim was flown by Mercy Flight to Strong Hospital Wednesday night – he was treated and released.
Police now asking the public for help finding the driver of the car that backed into a home striking the victim, and leaving the scene.

Golfers across the state are going to have to wait a few more weeks to hit the links again.
New guidelines say golf courses are now considered non-essential businesses and must remain closed until April 29th.
The news may be easier for golfers to take once you look outside this morning and see up to an inch of snow that fell overnight.

COVID-19 Local Update April 9, 2020

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE

April 9, 2020

New Cases

 

·         As of 2:00 p.m. today:

o   Genesee County received 9 new positive case of COVID-19 for a total of 63 positive cases

§  Eight of the individuals reside in the central part of the County and one individual resides in the eastern part of the county.

§  One individual is in their 20s, five individuals are in their 30s, one individual is in the 40’s, one individual is in their 50’s, and one individual is in their 60’s.

§  Three of the new positive cases were under precautionary or mandatory quarantine when they became symptomatic.

 

o   Orleans County: 3 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 24

§  2 of the individuals reside in the central part of the County and one individual resides in the western part of the County.

§  One individual is in their 50’s, one individual is in their 30’s, and one individual is in their 90’s.

§  One of the Orleans positive cases were connected to a confirmed positive case and is in mandatory isolation.

 

·         Contact tracing has been initiated for all new cases.  Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms become present).

·         If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated.  Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.

·         When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts.

Click here to view the Genesee and Orleans County online map of confirmed cases

 

OPERATIONAL UPDATES

Passover / Holy Week / Easter Holiday

·         We understand this is generally a time of family gatherings, however the NYS on PAUSE guidance is still in effect and all gatherings of individuals of any size for any reasons are canceled or postponed until at least April 22, 2020. (Executive Order 202.10)  Remember that any non-essential gatherings of individuals of any size for any reason (e.g. parties, celebrations or other social events) are also canceled or postponed at this time.   Many houses of worship have been live streaming their services which allows them to share their message and touch base with their congregations.  As challenging as this is to do, especially over the holidays, it is vital everyone stay home.  Consider celebrating with a phone call, or a social app so you can see one another and remember the life you may be saving by staying home could be one of your loved ones.  This is temporary.

·         Because COVID-19 is circulating locally, we can’t stress enough how important social distancing is and that EVERYONE needs to take this seriously and stay home! It is your social and civic responsibility to protect yourselves and others.


The Use of Cloth Face Coverings

·         The CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies). The cloth face cover is meant to protect other people in case you are infected. Recent studies have suggested that COVID-19 may be spread by people who are not showing symptoms. Continue to keep about 6 feet between yourself and others. The cloth face cover is not a substitute for social distancing or proper hand washing.

·         The cloth face cover should:

o   fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face

o   be secured with ties or ear loops

o   include multiple layers of fabric

o   allow for breathing without restriction

o   be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape

·         The cloth face coverings recommended are not surgical masks or N-95 respirators.  Those are critical supplies that must continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders, as recommended by current CDC guidance.

·         Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, is unconscious, or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.

Mental Health

·         Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations and having to socially distance yourself from someone you love can be difficult. Below are resources that can help you connect to a professional that can help you through these challenging times:

o   Care + Crisis Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text  ‘Talk’ to 741741

o   New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling

o   Head Space:  A mindfulness app called Headspace is offering some meditations to listen to for free to ease minds in such a stressful time. The app is free to download and includes meditations, sleep, and movement exercises to help with the varying emotions you may be feeling. The app does include in-app purchases. https://www.headspace.com/covid-19

 

NEW YORK STATE CASES / RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE

·         Complaints regarding businesses are being referred to the State Department of Labor via online form https://labor.ny.gov/workerprotection/laborstandards/coronavirus-complaints.shtm or phone:  1-822-789-0470.

·         New York State on PAUSE: To assist local authorities with enforcement of these orders, the Governor established the New York State PAUSE Enforcement Assistance Task Force where individuals can file complaints regarding the operation of non-essential businesses or gatherings 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Click here to file a complaint online. You may also call 1-833-789-0470. Businesses that are not in compliance with the Governor’s executive order may be penalized.

COVID-19 RELIABLE SOURCES

·         New York State Department of Health – click here

·         CDC – click here

·         Genesee County Health Department – click here

·         Orleans County Health Department – click here

·         NY State of Health – click here

·         If you believe an employer is violating either existing labor laws or recently issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo, please contact the NYS Attorney General’s office at (212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov

 

Morning News Briefing

City police are investigating an apparent hit and run on Highland Park. BPD responded around 9:30 last night to a report that a pedestrian had been struck by a car.
That pedestrian, who remains unidentified, was taken by Mercy Flight to Strong Hospital in Rochester.
Police say the driver was no longer at the scene when officers arrived.
They continue to question witnesses.

Genesee County has recorded 31 cases of COVID-19 in just three days…11 more cases were added yesterday bringing the total to 54.
Officials say contact tracing has been initiated in all the new cases. Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine,

Despite the jump in local cases Governor Cuomo is praising New Yorkers for doing their part to help flatten the coronavirus curve by staying home.
The governor said that the rate of new infections and hospitalizations due to the virus are showing signs of decreasing.
So far, more than 6,200 New Yorkers have died from coronavirus.

300 local families have been able to re-stock some of their shelves at home.
This is the result of yesterday’s pop-up food pantry at Northgate Free Methodist Church.
Cars lined Bank Street Road even before the food distribution began.
The Salvation Army co-hosted the event along with dozens of local volunteers from service clubs, county officials and others.

COVID-19 Local Update: April 8, 2020

 

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE

April 8, 2020

New Cases

·         As discussed during yesterday’s briefing, we are adding age ranges broken down by decade (except those from ages 0-20) to reiterate that any age is susceptible to COVID-19 and the complications.  Throughout the nation even young people are having serious complications which may be associated with known or unknown underlying health conditions and health behaviors such as smoking, vaping and obesity.  Tomorrow we are planning on including a cumulative breakdown of the ages.

 ·         As of 2:00 p.m. today:

o   Genesee County received 11 new positive case of COVID-19 for a total of 54 positive cases

§  Ten of the individuals reside in the central part of the County and one individual resides in the eastern part of the county.

§  One individual is in their 20s, four individuals are in their 30s, two individuals are in their 40s, three individuals are in their 60s, and one individual is in their 70s.

 

o   Orleans County: 4 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 21

§  All 4 new cases live in the central part of Orleans County.  One is in their 50’s, one in their 70’s, one in their 80’s and one in their 90’s

§  All of the Orleans positive cases were connected to a confirmed positive case and are in mandatory isolation.

 ·         Contact tracing has been initiated for all new cases.  Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms become present).

·         If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated.  Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.

·         When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts.

Click here to view the Genesee and Orleans County online map of confirmed cases

 

OPERATIONAL UPDATES
·         Going out for essentials – recommendations.
If you have to pick up essential items such as groceries or prescriptions, only one (1) member of the house hold should be going out. Make a list ahead of time to limit your exposure in the store. Maintain at least 6 feet of distance between you and other people. Do not bring in unessential items such as purses, phones, etc.·         Because COVID-19 is circulating locally, we can’t stress enough how important social distancing is and that EVERYONE needs to take this seriously and stay home! It is your social and civic responsibility to protect yourselves and others.

Businesses and Employers

·         Essential Businesses must continue to comply with the guidance and directives for maintaining a clean and safe work environment issued by the New York State Department of Health and every business, even if essential, is strongly urged to maintain social distance to the extent possible.

·         As an employer or business, it is your responsibility to protect your workforce and to follow and understand guidance as it pertains to COVID-19. The health and safety of your employees should be your utmost concern. Below are some things to consider:

o   Actively encourage sick employees to stay home.

o   If an employee becomes sick while at work, they should be separated from other employees, customers, and visitors and sent home immediately. Follow CDC guidelines for cleaning and disinfecting areas the sick employee visited.

o   Have conversations with employees about their concerns. Some employees may be at higher risk for severe illness, such as older adults and those with chronic medical conditions.

·         The Governor has established the New York State PAUSE Enforcement Assistance Task Force where individuals can file complaints regarding the operation of non-essential businesses or gatherings 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Click here to file a complaint online. You may also call 1-833-789-0470. Businesses that are not in compliance with the Governor’s executive order may be penalized.

·         If you believe your employer is in violation of either existing labor laws or recently issued executive orders, please contact the New York State Attorney General’s office at
(212) 416-8700 or mailto:Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov


The Use of Cloth Face Coverings

·         The CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies). The cloth face cover is meant to protect other people in case you are infected. Recent studies have suggested that COVID-19 may be spread by people who are not showing symptoms. Continue to keep about 6 feet between yourself and others. The cloth face cover is not a substitute for social distancing or proper hand washing.

·         The cloth face cover should:

o   fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face

o   be secured with ties or ear loops

o   include multiple layers of fabric

o   allow for breathing without restriction

o   be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape

·         The cloth face coverings recommended are not surgical masks or N-95 respirators.  Those are critical supplies that must continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders, as recommended by current CDC guidance.

·         Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, is unconscious, or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.

Mental Health

·         Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations and having to socially distance yourself from someone you love can be difficult. Below are resources that can help you connect to a professional that can help you though these challenging times:

o   Care + Crisis Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text  ‘Talk’ to 741741

o   New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling

o   Head Space:  A mindfulness app called Headspace is offering some meditations to listen to for free to ease minds in such a stressful time. The app is free to download and includes meditations, sleep, and movement exercises to help with the varying emotions you may be feeling. The app does include in-app purchases. https://www.headspace.com/covid-19

 

NEW YORK STATE CASES / RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE

·         Complaints regarding businesses are being referred to the State Department of Labor via online form https://labor.ny.gov/workerprotection/laborstandards/coronavirus-complaints.shtm or phone:  1-822-789-0470.

·         New York State on PAUSE: To assist local authorities with enforcement of these orders, the Governor established the New York State PAUSE Enforcement Assistance Task Force where individuals can file complaints regarding the operation of non-essential businesses or gatherings 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Click here to file a complaint online. You may also call 1-833-789-0470. Businesses that are not in compliance with the Governor’s executive order may be penalized.

COVID-19 RELIABLE SOURCES

·         New York State Department of Health – click here

·         CDC – click here

·         Genesee County Health Department – click here

·         Orleans County Health Department – click here

·         NY State of Health – click here

·         If you believe an employer is violating either existing labor laws or recently issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo, please contact the NYS Attorney General’s office at (212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov

 

Morning News Briefing

COVID-19 cases have doubled in Genesee County over the past days. The health department says that brings the county’s total number of infections to 44.
10 new cases were reported yesterday, the second day in a row that 10 new cases were added. All the new cases are individuals under 65.
All known contacts have been notified and placed in quarantine.

Health Director Paul Pettit says those homemade masks many are wearing are better than nothing but offered a reminder:

Photo: Paul Pettit, Public Health Director

Pettit also encouraged that only one person in the family run errands to the grocery store, again to minimize exposure and maintain social distance.

There is a pop-up mobile food pantry distribution today.
It is scheduled for 9AM at Northgate Free Methodist Church on Bank Street Road.
Simply drive-up and volunteers will place a box of food right into your car.
The Salvation Army is hosting the food distribution. They say they have seem a 50-percent increase in the use of food pantries across the state.

Governor Cuomo has signed an executive order allowing the state Department of Health to move unused ventilators to places they may be needed. That means the machines could be taken from upstate hospitals to be used downstate where there’s a high number of coronavirus cases. The governor’s order backed off on the original provision to use the National Guard to confiscate the devices.

State education officials have announced new graduation requirements following the cancellation of Regents exams. So long as students pass the Regents courses they were taking this year, they’ll be exempt from taking the exams. June’s exams are being scrapped due to concerns over the coronavirus.

COVID-19 Local Update, April 7, 2020

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE

April 7, 2020

From Genesee Orleans County Health Depts.

 

New Cases

·         As of 2:00 p.m. today:

o   Genesee County received 10 new positive case of COVID-19 for a total of 44 positive cases

§  Seven are under the age of 65 residing in the central part of Genesee County.

§  Three are under the age of 65 residing in the eastern part of Genesee County.

§  10 of the positive cases were under precautionary or mandatory quarantine when they became symptomatic.

 

o   Orleans County: 2 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 17

§  One of the positive cases is under the age of 65 and lives in the eastern part of Orleans County

§  One of the positive cases is under 65 and resides in the central part of Orleans County

§  One of the Orleans positive cases were under precautionary or mandatory quarantine when they became symptomatic.

 

·         Contact tracing has been initiated for all new cases.  Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms become present).

·         If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated.  Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.

·         When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts.

Genesee Orleans County Health Departments COVID-19 Status                                                                            As of 04/07/20
County # Positive #Negative Mandatory Isolation (Positive) Mandatory Quarantine Precautionary Quarantine # Deaths #Recovered
Genesee 44 291 33 38 1 1 10
Orleans 17 177 13 26 2 0 4
Total 61 468 46 64 3 1 14

Click here to view the Genesee and Orleans County online map of confirmed cases

 

OPERATIONAL UPDATES
·         Our local numbers are increasing.
As reported last week, the Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments have been preparing for an increase in positive cases and COVID-19 activity within our communities.
We are working diligently to conduct contact tracing among new positive cases as well as monitor symptoms for individuals who are under mandatory quarantine. The past two day’s jump in numbers is reflective of increasing community spread and the fact that many people are not practicing social distancing and following the guidance and recommendations. Staying home is one of your best defenses against contracting or transmitting COVID-19. By limiting contact with others, and practicing preventative health measures, we can continue to reduce the spread in our communities.·         Going out for essentials – recommendations.
If you have to pick up essential items such as groceries or prescriptions, only one (1) member of the house hold should be going out. Make a list ahead of time to limit your exposure in the store. Maintain at least 6 feet of distance between you and other people. Do not bring in unessential items such as purses, phones, etc. These items can carry germs from the store and back home with you. Wash your hands frequently and use a cloth face shield to protect yourself and others from spreading the virus.·         Because COVID-19 is circulating locally, we can’t stress enough how important social distancing is and that EVERYONE needs to take this seriously and stay home! It is your social and civic responsibility to protect yourselves and others.


Businesses and Employers

·         Essential Businesses must continue to comply with the guidance and directives for maintaining a clean and safe work environment issued by the New York State Department of Health and every business, even if essential, is strongly urged to maintain social distance to the extent possible.

·         As an employer or business, it is your responsibility to protect your workforce and to follow and understand guidance as it pertains to COVID-19. The health and safety of your employees should be your utmost concern. Below are some things to consider:

o   Actively encourage sick employees to stay home. Develop policies that encourage sick employees to stay at home without fear of repercussions, and ensure employees are aware of these policies.  There is a lot of guidance and information available to businesses and employees in regards to coverage of wages and protections related to COVID-19

o   Provide education and training materials in an easy to understand format and in the appropriate language and literacy level for all employees, like fact sheets and posters.

o   If an employee becomes sick while at work, they should be separated from other employees, customers, and visitors and sent home immediately. Follow CDC guidelines for cleaning and disinfecting areas the sick employee visited.

o

·         Have conversations with employees about their concerns. Some employees may be at higher risk for severe illness, such as older adults and those with chronic medical conditions.

The Governor has established the New York State PAUSE Enforcement Assistance Task Force where individuals can file complaints regarding the operation of non-essential businesses or gatherings 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Click here to file a complaint online. You may also call 1-833-789-0470. Businesses that are not in compliance with the Governor’s executive order may be penalized.  This area continues to be problematic, we continually receive calls on both businesses and gatherings occurring.  We all must ad hear to the guidance and limit these gatherings.  Continued intentional actions are placing folks in compromising situations and perpetuating the spread.

 

·         If you believe your employer is in violation of either existing labor laws or recently issued executive orders, please contact the New York State Attorney General’s office at
(212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov


The Use of Cloth Face Coverings

·         The CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies). The cloth face cover is meant to protect other people in case you are infected. Recent studies have suggested that COVID-19 may be spread by people who are not showing symptoms. Continue to keep about 6 feet between yourself and others. The cloth face cover is not a substitute for social distancing or proper hand washing.

·         The cloth face cover should:

o   fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face

o   be secured with ties or ear loops

o   include multiple layers of fabric

o   allow for breathing without restriction

o   be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape

·         The cloth face coverings recommended are not surgical masks or N-95 respirators.  Those are critical supplies that must continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders, as recommended by current CDC guidance.

·         Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, is unconscious, or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.


Tips to Stop the Spread in our Communities

·         Follow guidance from authorities where you live.

·         If you need to shop for food or medicine at the grocery store or pharmacy, stay at least 6 feet away from others.

·         Use mail-order for medications, if possible.

·         Consider a grocery delivery service.

·         Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others, including when you have to go out in public, for example to the grocery store.

·         Stay at least 6 feet between yourself and others, even when you wear a face covering.

·         Avoid large and small gatherings in private places and public spaces.

·         Children should not have in-person playdates while school is out.

·         Stay connected while staying away. It is very important to stay in touch with friends and family that don’t live in your home. Call, video chat, or stay connected using social media.

Mental Health

·         Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations and having to socially distance yourself from someone you love can be difficult. Below are resources that can help you connect to a professional that can help you though these challenging times:

o   Care + Crisis Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text  ‘Talk’ to 741741

o   New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling

o   Head Space: https://www.headspace.com/covid-19

 

Public Health Week

·         Public Health is often in the background working to educate and protect our residents and visitors who live work and plan in our communities.  However during this time of COVID-19 we are on the frontlines working collaboratively with our partners to address what is going on in our communities.

·         During Public Health Week (April 6-12) we are reminded that we as a community are public health.  What each of us chooses to do regarding the orders and guidance of our government leaders will impact how long we will be shut down and can impact the number of lives saved or lost.

·         We encourage you and your family to take this week to consider what truly is necessary each time you walk out your door.  Can you still help an older family member while protecting them through social distancing by adding their grocery list to yours?  Can you teach your children how to prepare healthy meals, keep their surroundings clean?  Can you seek emotional support by phone or Facetime?  Can you encourage and support your children in their studies.  Can you learn about a new culture or a new language online?  Can you be kind to others by respecting what they are doing is to help protect you, your family and your neighbors?

·         We are all Public Health and as Public Health professionals we appreciate you!

NEW YORK STATE CASES / RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE

·         According to the New York State Department of Health COVID-19 Tracker, there are now 138,863 positive cases of COVID-19 in New York State.

·         New York Governor Cuomo announced Monday the New York State “Pause” Executive Order, will remain in effect until at least April 29. The governor said the state will reevaluate if it will be extended even further every two weeks. This means schools and non-essential businesses will remain closed.

·         Complaints regarding businesses are being referred to the State Department of Labor via online form https://labor.ny.gov/workerprotection/laborstandards/coronavirus-complaints.shtm or phone:  1-822-789-0470.

·         New Yorkers without health insurance can apply through NY State of Health within 60 days of losing coverage.  https://nystateofhealth.ny.gov/

·         New York State on PAUSE: To assist local authorities with enforcement of these orders, the Governor established the New York State PAUSE Enforcement Assistance Task Force where individuals can file complaints regarding the operation of non-essential businesses or gatherings 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Click here to file a complaint online. You may also call 1-833-789-0470. Businesses that are not in compliance with the Governor’s executive order may be penalized.

COVID-19 RELIABLE SOURCES

·         New York State Department of Health – click here

·         CDC – click here

·         Genesee County Health Department – click here

·         Orleans County Health Department – click here

·         NY State of Health – click here

·         If you believe an employer is violating either existing labor laws or recently issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo, please contact the NYS Attorney General’s office at (212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov

@GOHEALTHNY SOCIAL MEDIA

Follow us on social media to receive reliable information about COVID-19.

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·         Twitter

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·         Ready Genesee

·         Orleans Aware

 

 

Morning News Briefing

A significant increase in the number of new COVID-19 cases in Genesee County. The health department late yesterday reported 10 new cases of the virus and most of them were traced to an employee of a local business who went to work while sick.
The business was not named.
All of the new cases were individuals under 65, all are in mandatory quarantine.
The latest count has the county’s total positive coronavirus cases at 32, and there has been one death.
Right now, no one is hospitalized with COVID-19 locally.

The City of Batavia is clamping down on groups congregating in city parks.
The city has announced that while the parks are open, the use of playground equipment, tennis courts, and basketball courts will be prohibited. City Hall says it will enforce the rules but the police department says they do not expect to issue tickets – just verbal warnings.
The rule is in response to social distancing recommendations.

Has coronavirus hit an apex in New York?
Governor Cuomo is calling the current trend hopeful but inconclusive, citing a flat daily death toll for the last two days — and drops in hospitalizations and ICU admissions. Cuomo says he now wants the navy hospital ship docked off Manhattan to care for coronavirus patients The ship “Comfort” had only been used for non-COVID-19 patients.
Cuomo announced schools and non-essential businesses will remain closed till April 29th.

School districts statewide find out more today on what the cancellation of June’s Regents exams will mean for students.
It was announced yesterday the tests are being scrapped due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic that has forced students out of the classroom.
High school students must pass certain exams to get a Regents diploma, but there’s no word yet on the impact canceling the upcoming tests will have on graduation requirements.

Western New York drivers are saving more of their hard-earned money when they fill up their vehicles. According to Triple A, the average cost for a gallon of regular gas is $2.27 That’s down 5- cents from last week and is 26 cents cheaper than this time a month ago.

Genesee County to Utilize WEA

News Release

Genesee County Office of Emergency Management in cooperation with the Genesee County Health Department will be utilizing WEA, a public alert and warning system to reinforce the importance of health and safety guidance issued by the Center for Disease Control (CDC), NYS Department of Health and the Genesee County Health Department.

Periodic messages will be sent out to promote health and safety and to ensure timely and accurate information is shared with all Genesee County residents.  You will be receiving an alert to your cell phone on April 7th, 2020 at approximately 12 PM and 6 PM.

Your impact on the community is great and your efforts in promoting safety guidelines is appreciated.

Recommended guidance to protect yourself and others from COVID-19 include:

  • Stay at home
  • Wash your hands frequently
  • Follow social distancing; stay 6’ away from non-household members

We thank you and your community for your cooperation during these difficult times.

Frequently Asked Questions: Wireless Emergency Alerts

Why are Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) important to me?

  • Alerts received at the right time can help keep you safe during an emergency. With WEA, warnings can be sent to your mobile device when you may be in harm’s way, without the need to download an app or subscribe to a service.

What are WEA messages?

  • Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) are emergency messages sent by authorized government alerting authorities through your mobile carrier.

What types of alerts will I receive?

  • Imminent Threat Alerts that include extreme weather, and other threatening emergencies in your area
  • Public Safety Alerts that are less severe in nature than Imminent Threat Alerts
  • AMBER Alerts
  • Presidential Alerts during a national emergency
  • Messages that are opt in message to support state and local WEA testing

What does a WEA message look like?

  • WEA will look like a text message. The WEA message will show the type and time of the alert, any action you should take, and the agency issuing the alert. The message will be no more than 360 characters.

Batavia Issues Restrictions on City Parks Usage

News Release:

Effective Immediately,
EMERGENCY ORDER #1-2020

Acting under the State of Emergency Declaration issued by my hand at 4:30 p.m. on March 22, 2020
and continuing in effect for a period not to exceed thirty (30) days, I issue the following emergency
order(s), which shall be in effect through April 11, 2020, and is subject to renewal:

1. All Public Parks within the City Limits of the City of Batavia, New York remain open to public
use from 7a.m. to dusk. During the times that public parks are open, State of New York
declared restrictions on congregating will be observed. In addition, all playground areas, tennis
courts, pickle ball courts, basketball courts, picnic pavilions, splash pads, and other park
facilities that are used for activities that constitute congregating are closed to public use.

As a reminder, all public parks in the City of Batavia are closed dusk to dawn. Closures will be
enforced.

COVID-19 Daily Update, April 6, 2020

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE

News Release: Genesee Orleans County Health Dept.

New Cases

·         As of 2:00 p.m. today:

o   Genesee County received 10 new positive case of COVID-19 for a total of 32 positive cases

§  Ten are under the age of 65 residing in the central part of Genesee County

§  Four of the positive cases were under mandatory quarantine and are now under mandatory isolation.

§  All of the positive cases are under mandatory isolation at home.

o   Orleans County: 6 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 15

§  One of the positive cases is under the age of 65 and lives in the eastern part of Orleans County

§  One of the positive cases is 65 and over and resides in the western part of Orleans County

§  Four of the positive cases are 65 and older and reside in the central part of Orleans County

§  One of the 6 is under isolation at the hospital and the other 5 are under mandatory isolation at home.

§  Two of the Orleans positive cases were under precautionary or mandatory quarantine when they became symptomatic.

 ·         Contact tracing has been initiated for all new cases.  Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms become present).

·         If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated.  Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.

·         When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts

·         We are asking that people be respectful and accommodating of health care workers and responders.  They are doing their job to protect you and our community. 

·         Be Responsible – Because COVID-19 is circulating locally, we can’t stress enough how important social distancing is and that EVERYONE needs to take this seriously and stay home! It is your social and civic responsibility to protect yourselves and others.

o   Today’s jump in numbers are reflective of increasing community spread and the fact so many are still out and about, taking the family grocery shopping, going to work sick, and having gatherings at home.  Keep in mind as you disregard the Governor’s orders and related guidance, you are risking exposure to yourself and your family members…and are perpetuating the spread of COVID-19 for everyone in our communities

o   When you are sick, stay home from work!  A significant increase in the number of mandatory quarantines being reported today is due to a symptomatic person going to work at a local business.  If you are part of gatherings and even one person tests positive everyone in close contact to the positive will be placed on mandatory quarantine.  We’re all in this together, we need to make sacrifices in the short term to get us through this challenging time. 

·         Click here to view the Genesee and Orleans County online map of confirmed cases

 

OPERATIONAL UPDATES

·         Connect together by celebrating apart. We understand that Easter is a time many families gather to celebrate the holiday with spring time traditions such as Easter egg hunts and large family dinners. We are asking our communities to think of fun and clever ways in which you can still virtually connect with your loved ones while keeping everyone safe and healthy.

·         Going out for essentials: If you have to pick up essential items such as groceries or prescriptions, only one (1) member of the house hold should be going out. Make a list ahead of time to limit your exposure in the store. Maintain at least 6 feet of distance between you and other people. Do not bring in unessential items such as purses, phones, etc. These items can carry germs from the store and back home with you. Wash your hands frequently.

·         Practice social distancing everywhere, including outdoors.  As the weather begins to warm up it is important to understand that you must continue to practice social distancing. This means maintaining 6 feet of distance between you and other people. DO NOT play or participate in sports or activities that bring people together. If you are walking, jogging, or biking outside, make sure you pass people at a minimum of 6 feet apart. Being outdoors will not protect you from contracting the virus. Remember this is only temporary. The more we practice social distancing the sooner we can get back to normal.

·         Please stay home if you are sick. DO NOT go to work if you are sick, symptomatic, or feel unwell. If you develop symptoms while at work, go home immediately.

·         Medical Concerns:  If you feel you may have COVID-19, call your primary care provider or healthcare facility ahead of time. DO NOT GO DIRECTLY THERE, CALL AHEAD TO GET GUIDANCE.

NEW YORK STATE CASES / RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE

·         According to the New York State Department of Health COVID-19 Tracker, there are now 130,689 positive cases of COVID-19 in New York State.

·         New York Governor Cuomo announced Monday the New York State “Pause” Executive Order, will remain in effect until at least April 29. The governor said the state will reevaluate if it will be extended even further every two weeks. This means schools and non-essential businesses will remain closed.

·         Complaints regarding businesses are being referred to the State Department of Labor via online form https://labor.ny.gov/workerprotection/laborstandards/coronavirus-complaints.shtm or phone:  1-822-789-0470.

·         New Yorkers without health insurance can apply through NY State of Health within 60 days of losing coverage.  https://nystateofhealth.ny.gov/

·         New York State on PAUSE: To assist local authorities with enforcement of these orders, the Governor established the New York State PAUSE Enforcement Assistance Task Force where individuals can file complaints regarding the operation of non-essential businesses or gatherings 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Click here to file a complaint online. You may also call 1-833-789-0470. Businesses that are not in compliance with the Governor’s executive order may be penalized.

COVID-19 RELIABLE SOURCES

·         New York State Department of Health – click here

·         CDC – click here

·         Genesee County Health Department – click here

·         Orleans County Health Department – click here

·         NY State of Health – click here

·         If you believe an employer is violating either existing labor laws or recently issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo, please contact the NYS Attorney General’s office at (212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov

·         Mental Health in both counties are available in various capacities and the Care + Crisis Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text 741741 for anxiety and stress

·         New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling

@GOHEALTHNY SOCIAL MEDIA

Follow us on social media to receive reliable information about CODIV-19.

·         Facebook

·         Twitter

·         Instagram

·         Ready Genesee

·         Orleans Aware

 

Morning News Briefing

Local coronavirus infections rose by one over the weekend.
The Genesee Orleans Health departments reported late Saturday that one new positive case of COVID-19 was reported.
In neighboring Orleans County: two new cases were announced Saturday. This brings Orleans’ total to nine. No further information on these newest cases will be revealed until this afternoon.

Governor Andrew Cuomo says New York could be at or near a plateau of its COVID-19 outbreak but that the next few days will tell. He says the number of patients being released from hospitals is rising, while the number of new hospitalizations is dropping.

A show of support for working men and women in Genesee County helping to deal with the coronavirus outbreak..
More than 150 big trucks rolled down Route 5 from Stafford yesterday afternoon.
The Corona Convoy as it came to be known traveled, with police escort, through seven towns in the county.
The convoy also raised $4,500 dollars for Crossroads House.

A new test being made in Rochester is designed to help doctors fight the spread of COVID-19. The test allows researchers to check for antibodies that would determine if a person had the coronavirus and recovered from it. It would help researchers better understand how the virus has spread.

Domestic violence victims have a new resource during the coronavirus pandemic. Governor Andrew Cuomo has unveiled a new hotline with the promise that every single call will be responded to and investigated. The number is on our website. In some areas of New York, there has been a 15-to-20-percent increase in domestic violence reports, due to most residents staying at home

New Domestic Violence Hotline

Domestic violence victims have a new resource during the coronavirus pandemic.

Governor Andrew Cuomo has unveiled a new hotline with the promise that every single call will be responded to and investigated.

The number is 1-800-942-6906. In some areas of New York, there has been a 15-to-20-percent increase in domestic violence reports, due to most residents staying at home.

COVID-19 UPDATE, Sat. April 4

The Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments have received 3 more COVID-19 cases, the departments said on Saturday night.

Genesee County reported one new case while Orleans County reported one.

Contact tracing has been initiated.

No further information will be released until Monday., 2020

WBTA Weekend News Briefing

Local coronavirus infections up by four.
The Genesee Orleans Health departments reported late yesterday that all four new cases of the virus have been contracted by persons under 65.
This brings the total number of infections in Genesee County to 21.
They have been isolated at home. None are hospitalized.
In neighboring Orleans County: three new cases were announced yesterday. This brings Orleans’ total to nine.

 

Public Health Director Paul Petitt says contact tracing is done with all positive cases.
Persons who come in contact with infected individuals are notified and placed in quarantine.
If a person tests positive and has been in a public place

Petitt urged families with Easter and Passover plans to be creative with their Holiday celebrations. He suggested Facetime or Zoom meetings with family members to maintain social distancing.

Governor Cuomo has signed an executive order mandating that the state can confiscate ventilators from medical facilities around the state.
The National Guard will have the job of obtaining those ventilators and then distributing them to places of need.
The order does not sit well with Genesee County’s Paul Petitt
NEWS_C “concerns about” (:14)
Cuomo says New York has been hit the hardest so far due to it being an international destination, with significant amounts of air travel.

Families along Batavia’s famed Redfield Parkway are treating their neighbor to lunch and dinner on Saturday.
Their neighbor happens to be Tops Friendly Market.
The Redfield Drive Association got together and raised the money to purchase the food from T F Browns and Compadres Taqueira.
The restaurants supplied enough food for both shifts at Tops.

COVID-19 Genesee County UPDATE, April 3

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE

Friday, April 3, 2020

New Cases

·         As of 2:00 p.m. today:

o   Genesee County received 4 new positive case of COVID-19 for a total of 21 positive cases

§  One under the age of 65 residing in the central part of Genesee County

§  Three under the age of 65 residing in the eastern part of Genesee County

§  In Genesee County, the 4 positive cases were previously under mandatory quarantine and have tested positive. They are now under mandatory isolation at home.

§   

o   Orleans County: 3 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 9

§  All reside in the central part of Orleans County, 1 is over 65 and 2 are under 65.

§  One of the 3 is under isolation at the hospital and the other 2 are under mandatory isolation at home.

§  None of the Orleans positive cases were under precautionary or mandatory quarantine when they became symptomatic.

·         Contact tracing has been initiated for all new cases.  Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms become present).

·         If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated.  Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.

·         When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts

 Cumulative Data –

New mapping platform – will be updating daily during the week.  Link will be available on our web sites.  Monitor both and individual county or both along with current and total numbers

 ·         Healthcare providers are advising patients undergoing swabbing that are symptomatic (based on availability and screening for high-risk) for COVID-19 to self-isolate until test results are received and COVID-19 is ruled out.  Follow your healthcare provider’s advice.

·         Due to test kit availability, we are not providing community testing at this time.  We will be announcing further information on this as local capacity increases.

 

OPERATIONAL UPDATES

·         Be on the lookout for ‘GO Health Minutes’. These short video clips will feature different guests within the health departments as well as legislative members, businesses, organizations and some of our neighbors to highlight important information pertaining to COVID-19. We will frequently be releasing new videos so be sure you are subscribed to our GO Health NY YouTube channel and check our websites and our social media platforms:  Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

·         Social distancing must be practiced in order to stop the spread of COVID-19. This means canceling events such as parties, celebrations, and neighborhood gatherings where people congregate together.

·         This also means that children and adults should not play contact sports.

·         These are temporary requests that will help stop the spread of the virus so that we can resume normal activities.

·         If you must go to the store, always maintain at least 6 feet of space between you and other people and wash hands frequently.

o   Stores are not to be utilized as a social event.  It is important people limit their trips to the store, choose a designated shopper and if at all possible leave the children home.  Keep a 6 foot distance between other shoppers.

o   Take out / food trucks are not a gathering place.  Keep 6’ space between other customers.

·         Please remain home if ill, even if a person has a negative COVID-19 result it is important to continue to limit physical contact.  Flu and COVID-19 are still transmittable and people should continue to remain home and limiting contact with others.

·         If you work with a vulnerable population, self-monitor prior to going to work, if you become sick while at work, contact your supervisor immediately and leave the premises to decrease the risk of contact with others.  When not working, follow social distancing and limit time in public.

·         Medical Concerns:  If you feel you may have COVID-19, call your primary care provider or healthcare facility ahead of time. DO NOT GO DIRECTLY THERE, CALL AHEAD TO GET GUIDANCE.   Swabbing will be based on those who are in higher risk categories – elderly and immune compromised and those with underlying health issues.

o   Swab sample results are coming back slower than expected – some are over a week or more. With more testing, we expect this will continue.  Whenever anyone is swabbed for potential COVID-19, self-isolation is advised until the test result is back

·         Older Adults:  Be alert for scams, including government grant scams.  What to look for:

o   Do not accept unsolicited phone calls or e-mails from someone claiming to be an official from the Federal Grants Administration, which does not exist, or a nonprofit organization like the National Residential Improvement Association offering grands or funding for repairs.

o   Don’t click on social media messages or posts from people excited to share thousands of dollars, free grants, etc.

o   The scammers may try using utility companies to access your information.  Contact the utility using the number you have on your monthly bill not what the potential scammers have given you.

o   Let calls you don’t recognize go to voice mail, most scams won’t leave a message, however, don’t return unsolicited calls.  Write down the number and check online or have someone check for you to make sure it is legitimate.  If you are unsure, or if it sounds too good to be true, ignore it and talk with a family member, the Office for the Aging, the Better Business Bureau or your local police.

 

Asking that folks be respectful and accommodating of health care workers and responders.  They are doing their job to protect you and our community. 

·         Anxiety, Depression, Fear:  If you are struggling with anxiety, depression, fear about this outbreak call the Care + Crisis Helpline at 585-283-5200, text 741741 or call the NYS COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 884-863-9314, they have trained listeners available 24/7 to help you through this.

 

FRAUD ALERT – Watch out for Scams!

·         At this time there are no FDA-approved drugs or treatments for COVID-19.

·         There are also no over-the-counter COVID-19 tests. If you get an email, phone call, offer by mail or other solicitation for these scams, hang up and ignore them.

·         This is a very important warning to reinforce for every County resident.

·         The best medical advice for you comes from your healthcare provider.

NEW YORK STATE CASES / RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE

·         Governor Andrew Cuomo announced today at his press conference there are now a total of 102,863 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 in NYS.

·         14,810 (14%) COVID-19 patients are hospitalized.

·         Complaints regarding businesses are being referred to the State Department of Labor via online form https://labor.ny.gov/workerprotection/laborstandards/coronavirus-complaints.shtm or phone:  1-822-789-0470.

·         New Yorkers without health insurance can apply through NY State of Health within 60 days of losing coverage.  https://nystateofhealth.ny.gov/

 

COVID-19 RELIABLE SOURCES

·         New York State Department of Health – click here

·         CDC – click here

·         Genesee County Health Department – click here

·         Orleans County Health Department – click here

·         NY State of Health – click here

·         If you believe an employer is violating either existing labor laws or recently issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo, please contact the NYS Attorney General’s office at (212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov

·         Mental Health in both counties are available in various capacities and the Care + Crisis Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text 741741 for anxiety and stress

·         New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling

@GOHEALTHNY SOCIAL MEDIA

Follow us on social media to receive reliable information about CODIV-19.

·         Facebook

·         Twitter

·         Instagram

·         Ready Genesee

·         Orleans Aware

 

Morning News Briefing

Chris Collins will get to remain a free man a bit longer.
A judge has granted the former congressman’s request to delay the start of his prison sentence until June 23rd.
Collins, who represented Genesee County in Washington, pleaded guilty to federal insider trading charges. He was supposed to start his two-year sentence April 23rd. His lawyers cited concerns over the coronavirus saying the 69-year-old Collins is at risk of getting severely ill should he be exposed to the disease.

The latest update on coronavirus locally: One new positive case in Genesee County, an individual under 65. This brings the county’s total to 17. Next door in Orleans County, no new cases reported.

From the police blotter this morning:

Quentin Bloom

Michael Lanze

Quentin Bloom of North Spruce Street in Batavia arrested for criminal contempt and harassment. BPD says Bloom was arrested following a domestic incident on Edward Street where he smacked a person he had been court ordered to stay away from.

30 year old Michael Lanze of Rochester arrested for criminal contempt and burglary. Police say Lanze was found in a Hutchins Street apartment he was ordered to stay away from.

 

 

A LeRoy company doing its part to meet the critical shortage of hospital ventilators.
Aluminum Injection Mold was contacted a week ago to mold plastic over a ventilator part being made in Ohio.
Normally, this would take five to seven weeks to construct such a mold.
But by yesterday morning, the Aluminum Injection Mold part was ready for final assembly by a Long Island company manufacturing the lifesaving devises for hospitals treated COVID-19 patients.

Organizers of Genesee County’s popular “Day of Caring” have had to postpone this year’s event due to COVID-19.
The event was originally scheduled for May 13th.
The United Way sponsored the event which involved hundreds of volunteers.
The United Way says they hope to re-schedule the event.

County Health COVID-19 UPDATE: April 2, 2020

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE: April 2, 2020

New Cases

·         As of 2:00 p.m. today (April 2, 2020)

o   Genesee County received 1 new positive case of COVID-19 for a total of 17 positive cases

§  One under the age of 65 residing in the central part of Genesee County

o   Orleans County: Has no new cases and is at a total of 6 positive cases

o   The new positive case was not under precautionary or mandatory quarantine when they became symptomatic.

 ·         Contact tracing has been initiated for all new cases.  Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms become present).  If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated.  Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.  When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts

Cumulative Data

·         Healthcare providers are advising patients undergoing swabbing that are symptomatic (based on availability and screening for high-risk) for COVID-19 to self-isolate until test results are received and COVID-19 is ruled out.  Follow your healthcare provider’s advice.

·         We are not providing community testing at this time.  We will be announcing further information on this as local capacity increases.

OPERATIONAL UPDATES

·         Social distancing must be practiced in order to stop the spread of COVID-19. This means canceling events such as parties, celebrations, and neighborhood gatherings where people congregate together. This also means that children and adults should not play contact sports. These are temporary requests that will help stop the spread of the virus so that we can resume normal activities. If you must go to the store, always maintain at least 6 feet of space between you and other people.

·         Please remain home if ill, even if a person has a negative COVID-19 result it is important to continue to limit physical contact.  Flu and COVID-19 are still transmittable and people should continue to remain home and limiting contact with others.  If you work with a vulnerable population, self-monitor prior to going to work, if you become sick while at work, contact your supervisor immediately and leave the premises to decrease the risk of contact with others.  When not working, follow social distancing and limit time in public.

·         Medical Concerns:  If you feel you may have COVID-19, call your primary care provider or healthcare facility ahead of time. DO NOT GO DIRECTLY THERE, CALL AHEAD TO GET GUIDANCE.   Swabbing will be based on those who are in higher risk categories – elderly and immune compromised and those with underlying health issues.

o   Swab sample results are coming back slower than expected. With more testing, we expect this will continue.  Whenever anyone is swabbed for potential COVID-19, self-isolation is advised until the test result is received.

·         Older Adults:  The Office for the Aging in both counties continues to operate.  They are still providing meals to their residents and are working with their vendors to provide the potential increase in meals to the residents they serve.

o   For Genesee County:  NYConnects / Office for the Aging call 585-343-1611 Monday-Friday 8:30-5:00.

o   For Orleans County:  Older Adults in Orleans County can contact Arc of Genesee Orleans Nutrition Program at 589-5424 weekdays between 8:30-3pm.  Office for the Aging staff members are coordinating with Meals on Wheels to ensure meal delivery to seniors in need. The staff are keeping their spirits up to stay safe and still deliver smiles with nutrition.  There is a suggested donation for meal delivery, but do not let cost get in the way of asking for this help.    If you have concerns about not having enough food call NY Connects/Office for the Aging at 589-3191.

·         Anxiety, Depression, Fear:  If you are struggling with anxiety, depression, fear about this outbreak call the Care + Crisis Helpline at 585-283-5200, text 741741 or call the NYS COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 884-863-9314, they have trained listeners available 24/7 to help you through this.

FRAUD ALERT – Watch out for Scams!

·         At this time there are no FDA-approved drugs or treatments for COVID-19.

·         There are also no over-the-counter COVID-19 tests. If you get an email, phone call, offer by mail or other solicitation for these scams, hang up and ignore them.

·         This is a very important warning to reinforce for every County resident.

·         The best medical advice for you comes from your healthcare provider.

NEW YORK STATE CASES / RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE

·         Governor Andrew Cuomo announced today at his press conference there are now a total of 92,381 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 in NYS.

·         13,383 (14%) COVID-19 patients are hospitalized.

·         The Governor has extended NY PAUSE program (non-essential workers down to 0%) until April 15; this will be evaluated every two weeks

·         New Yorkers without health insurance can apply through NY State of Health within 60 days of losing coverage.  https://nystateofhealth.ny.gov/

·         The President and CDC have ordered a travel advisory (NY, NJ & CT) – this is not a lock down, these federal actions support state actions to date.  It is OK to be outside in your yard, ride bikes, visit a state park for walks, to take rides in your vehicle, however congregating and taking the family shopping does not comply with social distancing (keeping 6’ from others, limiting time out in public)

 

COVID-19 RELIABLE SOURCES

·         New York State Department of Health – click here

·         CDC – click here

·         Genesee County Health Department – click here

·         Orleans County Health Department – click here

·         NY State of Health – click here

·         If you believe an employer is violating either existing labor laws or recently issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo, please contact the NYS Attorney General’s office at (212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov

·         Mental Health in both counties are available in various capacities and the Care + Crisis Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text 741741 for anxiety and stress

·         New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling

@GOHEALTHNY SOCIAL MEDIA

Follow us on social media to receive reliable information about CODIV-19.

·         Facebook

·         Twitter

·         Instagram

·         Ready Genesee

·         Orleans Aware

 

 

 

Morning News Briefing

Former Republican Congressman Chris Collins is asking for the start of his prison sentenced to be delayed.
Lawyers for the ex-27th District representative are citing concerns over the coronavirus. They say the 69-year-old Collins – who had represented Genesee County in Congress – is at risk of getting severely ill should he be exposed to the virus.
Collins pleaded guilty last year to federal insider trading charges. He’s scheduled to begin his 26 month sentence on April 23rd

The latest update from the county health department shows Genesee County with a total of 16 coronavirus infections. Three cases were added yesterday….all three are under the age of 65.
The complete text of the health department’s daily local update of Coronavirus can be seen HERE.

Planning for a new Genesee County jail have been put on hold.
County lawmakers say uncertainty over the budget has delayed any work on the jail project until next spring.
County Manager Jay Gsell said that due to the effect of bail reform plans to construct a four-pod jail may be reduced to three.

State lawmakers have reportedly struck a deal on the state budget. According to the Wall Street Journal, spending will be cut due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The exact price tag of the budget hasn’t been announced.
The deadline for passing a budget was earlier this week, but since lawmakers failed to approve it on time, the paychecks of thousands of state workers were put on hold.

County Health COVID-19 Update: April 1, 2020

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE

New Cases

·         As of 2:00 p.m. today:

o   Genesee County received 3 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 16 positive cases

§  One under the age of 65 residing in the central part of Genesee County

§  One under the age of 65 residing in the western part of Genesee County.

§  One under the age of 65 residing in the western part of Genesee County.

o   For Orleans: Has no new cases and is at a total of 6 positive cases

o   In Genesee County, two individuals that were under mandatory quarantine tested positive and are now under mandatory isolation.

·         Contact tracing has been initiated for all the new cases.  Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms become present).  If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated.  Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.  When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts.  Some in the community continue to voice requests about knowing the locations of individuals who have tested positive, those who are being monitored and where they have been in the county so that they may know where to avoid.  The current situation is that every place is potentially a location that you could catch the virus.  If would be a disservice to our communities to share specific locations that could indicate that there is any area in either county that is unaffected by the threat of COVID-19.  Please stay at home as much as possible, please stay home if you are sick, please encourage others to do the same and please show kindness to others.

Cumulative Data

·         Healthcare providers are advising patients undergoing swabbing that are symptomatic (based on availability and screening for high-risk) for COVID-19 to self-isolate until test results are received and COVID-19 is ruled out.  Follow your healthcare provider’s advice.

·         Currently, NYS clearance protocol for discontinuation of mandatory isolation for persons with confirmed COVID-19 is the following: it has been at least 7 days since the initial positive test for COVID-19, at least 3 days without fever and no use of fever-reducing medication, and improvement in the signs and symptoms of the illness.    Swabbing through the Health Departments is warranted as part of our quarantine / isolation protocol for those who become symptomatic.  We are not providing community testing at this time.  We will be announcing further information on this as local capacity increases.

OPERATIONAL UPDATES

·         Please remain home if ill, even if a person has a negative COVID-19 result it is important to continue to limit physical contact.  Flu and COVID-19 are still transmittable and people should continue to remain home and limiting contact with others.  If you work with a vulnerable population, self-monitor prior to going to work, if you become sick while at work, contact your supervisor immediately and leave the premises to decrease the risk of contact with others.  When not working, follow social distancing and limit time in public.

·         Medical Concerns:  If you feel you may have COVID-19, call your primary care provider or healthcare facility ahead of time. DO NOT GO DIRECTLY THERE, CALL AHEAD TO GET GUIDANCE.   Swabbing will be based on those who are in higher risk categories – elderly and immune compromised and those with underlying health issues.

o   Swab sample results are coming back slower than expected. With more testing, we expect this will continue.  Whenever anyone is swabbed for potential COVID-19, self-isolation is advised until the test result is received.

·         Take media breaks:  If you are struggling with anxiety, depression, fear about this outbreak call the Care + Crisis Helpline at 585-283-5200, text 741741 or call the NYS COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 884-863-9314, they have trained listeners available 24/7 to help you through this.

·         Nature Breaks and Parks:  We are getting reports of groups not practicing social distancing.  This is not a time for playgroups.  Parents remind your children they are to keep their distance from non-household members to limit the spread of disease.  State Parks are free with limited services available.  Local parks may close or limit access to adhere to state guidelines.

o   Guidance on Responsible Recreations During the COVID-19 Public Health Crisis:  http://www.dec.ny.gov/docs/administration_pdf/decparkscovid19guide.pdf

o   Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation COVID-19 Updates:  https://parks.ny.gov/covid19/?utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery

FRAUD ALERT – Watch out for Scams!

·         At this time there are no FDA-approved drugs or treatments for COVID-19.

·         There are also no over-the-counter COVID-19 tests. If you get an email, phone call, offer by mail or other solicitation for these scams, hang up and ignore them.

·         This is a very important warning to reinforce for every County resident.

·         The best medical advice for you comes from your healthcare provider.

NEW YORK STATE CASES / RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE

·         Governor Andrew Cuomo announced today at his press conference there are now a total of 83,712 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 in NYS.

·         12,226 (15%) COVID-19 patients are hospitalized.

·         The Governor has extended NY PAUSE program (non-essential workers down to 0%) until April 15; this will be evaluated every two weeks

·         New Yorkers without health insurance can apply through NY State of Health within 60 days of losing coverage.  https://nystateofhealth.ny.gov/

·         The President and CDC have ordered a travel advisory (NY, NJ & CT) – this is not a lock down, these federal actions support state actions to date.  It is OK to be outside in your yard, ride bikes, visit a state park for walks, to take rides in your vehicle, however congregating and taking the family shopping does not comply with social distancing (keeping 6’ from others, limiting time out in public)

COVID-19 RELIABLE SOURCES

·         New York State Department of Health – click here

·         CDC – click here

·         Genesee County Health Department – click here

·         Orleans County Health Department – click here

·         NY State of Health – click here

·         If you believe an employer is violating either existing labor laws or recently issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo, please contact the NYS Attorney General’s office at (212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov

·         Mental Health in both counties are available in various capacities and the Care + Crisis Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text 741741 for anxiety and stress

·         New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling

 

Evening News Briefing

Officials are switching a position that they took early on in the COVID-19 outbreak saying that people should wear face masks to avoid droplets getting airborne and causing more infections. Officials are still warning against buying up all the masks that are commonly used by healthcare professionals as they need them to do their jobs. Although masks may not completely prevent the virus they may help with slowing down transmission. The change in policy comes as doctors and researchers learn more about the COVID 19 virus.

Four teens have been arrested in Rochester for assaulting a woman as she was leaving the Hilton Family dollar. The teens allegedly attacked the woman because she was wearing a respirator mask. According to the victim the teens accused her of spreading the coronavirus before punching her in the face and stealing her wallet and keys. 18 year old Rocco Gingello, 19 year old Alexis Gingello and 19 year old Taya O’Connor all of gates were charged with second degree robbery and 19 year old Nicholas of Greece was charged with second degree robbery, fourth degree criminal possession of a weapon and other driving related charges.

Several school districts including the Pembroke central school district are planning drive by parades. The Pemproke Teacher’s Association is sponsoring a thinking of you drive by parade this Friday. Planners are asking participants to gather at the High School Parking lot at 12:30 Friday afternoon to get organized.
They ask everyone to decorate their cars, write messages on your back windows with washable markers (they will have some) – all while maintaining the required six foot social distance
Check with your school district to see if they are planning something similar.

Officials are telling people to be on the lookout for scams that have to do with the Novel coronavirus. Scams can take the form of offers of treatments or cures for COVID 19, offers of over the counter tests, and fake stimulus checks or IRS calls that ask you to give personal information or money in order to claim the money. There are no fda approved treatments or cures and you should never give out personal information or money to a caller. Hang up and ignore these calls.

Farmers, Contractors, and Truckers will be participating in the corona convoy across Genesee County on Sunday April 5th. Starting in Stafford and crossing Genesee county this convoy of hope will raise awareness and money for the Crossroads house in Batavia.

The law street yard waste station has announced that it will be open with temporary hours on April 6th for city residents to dispose of their yard waste. The new hours are Monday through Friday from 8am to 2 pm.

City Opens Yard Waste Station April 6

 

The Law Street Yard Waste Station will open with temporary hours beginning April 6th for City residents to dispose of “yard waste”. Special hours for yard waste station will remain in effect during the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Until further notice the yard waste station will open at 8 AM and close at 2 PM, Monday through Friday during normal business days for the City of Batavia. All customers are asked to the abide by social distancing policies put forth by the Genesee County Department of Health, New York State Department of Health and the CDC. Specific instructions include:

• Use the Law Street entrance to enter and exit the City Yard Waste Station only.
• Distance yourself at least six feet from any employees or other customers.
• Do not visit the Yard Waste Station if you are sick and/or have Covid-19 symptoms (cough, fever, shortness of breath).
• Please wash your hands thoroughly before and after your visiting the Yard Waste Station.
• Sanitize containers or vehicles used to transport yard waste.

As a reminder, the City does not provide spring curbside pickup of yard waste materials (grass, leaves and limbs) and City residents are encouraged to bring these material to the Law Street Yard Waste Station as needed.

The following items cannot be accepted at the station: tree stumps, building materials, rock, fill (soil and stone) other debris. Yard waste needs to be free of trash (paper, plastic, bottles, cans…etc.), as this material cannot be processed. All containers (totes, boxes, bags…etc.) need to be taken back with the customer.

As a reminder please use Law Street entrance to enter and exit the City Yard Waste Station only.

Morning News Briefing

Governor Cuomo is warning New Yorkers that the state’s ongoing battle against coronavirus will likely be a long one.
Over 75,000 State residents have been infected while more than 15-hundred people have lost their lives.
Health officials say since New York is a hotbed for the virus, the number of cases and deaths will keep climbing for weeks.

The latest local update from the County Health Department shows one new case of COVID-19 in Genesee County and one new case in Orleans County.
The new case in Genesee County is a person under 65.
Contact tracing has been initiated for both new cases. Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine.

Governor Cuomo says his brother, CNN anchor Chris Cuomo, has tested positive for COVID-19.
The Governor Cuomo says it happened right after his mom left his brother’s house, and that if she were still there, she might have caught the virus as well.
Cuomo is issuing a warning to New Yorkers about following the social distancing mandates, especially with those who might be more susceptible to contracting the virus.

Monroe County deputies have arrested four people who allegedly attacked a woman wearing a respirator mask. Investigators say the assault happened at the Family Dollar store in Hilton last week.
The victim says the suspects accused her of having coronavirus before she was punched in the face and had her wallet and keys stolen.

The Holland Land Office Museum has gone virtual. The museum has announced they have added local history activities to their website and Facebook page. They have also added their own version of Jeopardy – all on line HERE.

From our let’s make the best of it department:
The Pembroke Teachers Association is sponsoring a “Thinking of You” drive-by parade for this Friday.
Planners are asking participants to gather at the High School Parking lot at 12:30 Friday afternoon to get organized.
They ask everyone to decorate their cars, write messages on your back windows with washable markers (they will have some) – all while maintaining the required six foot social distance

Local COVID-19 Update for Genesee & Orleans County

 

From the Genesee & Orleans County Health Departments

SITUATIONAL UPDATE, Tuesday, March 31, 2020

New Cases

·         As of 2:00 p.m. today:

o   Genesee County received 1 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 13 positive cases

§  One under the age of 65 residing in the central part of Genesee County

o   For Orleans: 1 new positive case of COVID-19 for a total of 6 positive cases

§  Individual is under the age of 65 and is a resident of the central part of the county.

o   None of the new positive cases were under precautionary or mandatory quarantine when they became symptomatic and are not believed to be connected.

 

·         Contact tracing has been initiated for all the new cases.  Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms becomes present).  If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated.  Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.  When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts.

Cumulative Data

·         Healthcare providers are advising patients undergoing swabbing that are symptomatic (based on availability and screening for high-risk) for COVID-19 to self-isolate until test results are received and COVID-19 is ruled out.  Follow your healthcare provider’s advice.

·         Currently, NYS clearance protocol for discontinuation of mandatory isolation for persons with confirmed COVID-19 is the following: it has been at least 7 days since the initial positive test for COVID-19, at least 3 days without fever and no use of fever-reducing medication, and improvement in the signs and symptoms of the illness.    Swabbing through the Health Departments is warranted as part of our quarantine / isolation protocol for those who become symptomatic.  We are not providing community testing at this time.  We will be announcing further information on this as local capacity increases.

OPERATIONAL UPDATES

·         Please remain home if ill, even if a person has a negative COVID-19 result it is important to continue to limit physical contact.  Flu and COVID-19 are still transmittable and people should continue to remain home and limiting contact with others.  Do not be afraid of people because they may be coughing or sneezing, they may have allergies, but continue to keep your distance (at least 6’).

·         Medical Concerns:  If you feel you may have COVID-19, call your primary care provider or healthcare facility ahead of time. DO NOT GO DIRECTLY THERE, CALL AHEAD TO GET GUIDANCE.   Swabbing will be based on those who are in higher risk categories – elderly and immune compromised and those with underlying health issues.

o   Swab sample results are coming back slower than expected. With more testing, we expect this will continue.  Whenever anyone is swabbed for potential COVID-19, self-isolation is advised until the test result is received.

·         Respect / Social Responsibility / Fear mongering / Consequences –Health Departments are mandated to adhere to HIPAA regulations therefore we are not releasing potential identifying information of anyone who is under our care.

o   If during contact tracing there is an issue of missing potential contacts we will provide locations.  Not everyone who coughs or sneezes has a respiratory virus.  People need to be respectful of the process and the guidance surrounding social distancing.  COVID-19 is now community transmissible therefore people need to take social distancing seriously.

o   There are consequences for not adhering to the directives.  Non-compliance may prolong the spread of COVID-19 as well as increasing the spread which can overwhelm our healthcare systems and put our vulnerable populations at increased risk.

o   Sticking to the basics: limiting exposure to the public, frequent handwashing, staying home if ill with any respiratory illness, keeping 6’ distance from other people and sharing creative ideas to keep in touch with family and friends are what we need.

·         Take media breaks:  Talking about who has or hasn’t been tested, is sick or sharing rumors about anything COVID-19 is increasing anxiety in many people.  Be respectful and stay home as much as possible.  It is safe to go outside or for a ride, but be mindful to keep at least 6’ distance between other people.  If you are struggling with anxiety, depression, fear about this outbreak call the Care + Crisis Helpline at 585-283-5200, text 741741 or call the NYS COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 884-863-9314, they have trained listeners available 24/7 to help you through this.

·         Community Spread:  Means you can get it from respiratory droplets from infected people and on any surface as long as the virus is still viable.  If you touch a door handle, counter, etc. that has the virus on it, then touch a mucous membrane (nose, mouth, eyes) you can introduce the virus into your body.  Identifying a store or business where people may have been doesn’t help because the virus is everywhere and can give a false sense of security that the virus isn’t somewhere else.  Limiting trips to the store and designating only one person for shopping can lower the risk of spreading the virus.  With the rising numbers, it is important to know the social distancing guidance will work but it takes time before we can see the results.  The coming weeks are most critical in determining how many lives can be saved in our communities by staying safer at home, social distancing, and having good hand (wash often) and cough (do not cough in your hand, but in a disposable tissue or your elbow) hygiene.

·         Nature Breaks and Parks:  We are getting reports of groups not practicing social distancing.  Many parks have roped off areas of their parks to discourage group play (basketball, football, soccer, using shared equipment or frequently touched surfaces such as the playground equipment).  This is not a time for playgroups.  Parents remind your children they are to keep their distance from non-household members to limit the spread of disease.  State Parks are free with limited services available.  They are encouraging New Yorkers to recreate locally, practice social distancing, and use common sense to protect themselves and others.  Contact your local park for specific information on any changes to their operations in response to the COVID-19 public health emergency.

o   Guidance on Responsible Recreations During the COVID-19 Public Health Crisis:  http://www.dec.ny.gov/docs/administration_pdf/decparkscovid19guide.pdf

o   Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation COVID-19 Updates:  https://parks.ny.gov/covid19/?utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery

o   If parking lots are full, come back another time or go to another area of the park.  Remember to be safe whenever you are hiking in parks.

o   Avoid games and activities that require close contact, frequently touched surfaces such as playground equipment

o   Maintain social distancing by keeping at least 6’ of distance between yourself and others, even when outdoors

o   It is safe to be outside in your backyard or other personal outdoor space.  If riding bikes, keep your distance (6’) from non-household people.

FRAUD ALERT – Watch out for Scams!

·         At this time there are no FDA-approved drugs or treatments for COVID-19.

·         There are also no over-the-counter COVID-19 tests. If you get an email, phone call, offer by mail or other solicitation for these scams, hang up and ignore them.

·         This is a very important warning to reinforce for every County resident.

·         The best medical advice for you comes from your healthcare provider.

Alzheimer’s Association Offers Virtual Education and Programs

Across New York, it is estimated there are more than 400,000 individuals living with some type of dementia, with another one million+ people providing some kind of care for them. Their needs for access to help, support and education is ongoing, and to address those needs, the Alzheimer’s Association Western New York Chapter is offering a number of virtual programs accessible from any location via computer or mobile device.

Chapter dementia care consultants are planning a number of free online classes for participants to attend from the safety and comfort of their own homes. In the month of April, these education programs will be offered virtually:

Overview of Virtual Programs and Services
Friday, April 3 – 2:00pm
Friday, April 17 – 2:00pm

Understanding Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia
Tuesday, April 7 – noon
Tuesday, April 14 – noon
Tuesday, April 21 – noon
Tuesday, April 28 – noon
Wednesday, April 29 – 8:00am

Know the 10 Warning Signs
Friday, April 10 – 2:00pm
Friday, April 24 – 2:00pm

Effective Communication Strategies
Thursday, April 2 – 6:00pm
Wednesday, April 22 – 8:00am
Thursday, April 30 – 6:00pm

Understanding and Responding to Dementia-Related Behaviors
Thursday, April 9 – 6:00pm
Wednesday, April 15 – 8:00am

Legal and Financial Planning for Dementia
Wednesday, April 8 – 8:00am
Thursday, April 16 – 6:00pm

Dementia Conversations
Thursday, April 23 – 6:00pm

Meaningful Activities for Family Caregivers
Monday, April 20 – 1:30pm

To register for any/all of these classes and learn how to access them, visit: bit.ly/WNYeducation or call 1.800.272.3900.

Caregiver support group meetings are also being offered in a number of ways, including telephone conference calls and webinars. To learn more about taking part in a virtual support group meeting, visit: bit.ly/WNYsupport. The Association’s around-the-clock Helpline is also available to answer questions about programs and how to access them, address concerns, and discuss other resources. That number is 1-800-272-3900.

Confidential care consultations to discuss care planning, finances, and more will continue to be available via telephone to the Helpline: 1-800-272-3900. Video chats are also possible for these free virtual meetings.

And finally, the Association has a dedicated website to help caregivers whose loved one is at home and those whose loved one is residing in an assisted living facility, That website is: alz.org/COVID19.

Attica Closes Municipal Parks

The Village of Attica in the best interests of its residents and community has closed the Municipal Playground located at Main Street and North Pearl Street and the Village Park on Exchange Street with the exception of the parks Walking Path.

With the guidelines of the Center for Disease Control, the New York State Department of Health and the Wyoming County Health Department the decision was made to close these facilities until further notice. With the ever-increasing spread of the COVID-19 virus and the increasing number of active cases and deaths it is imperative that we protect the public and slow the spread of this epidemic.

The municipal playground at Main and North Pearl St has been taped off with signage. The Village Park on Exchange Street has the entrance and exit barricaded with signage. The only exception is use of the walking path, with the strong recommendation of social distancing of at least 6 feet. Anyone utilizing the walking path will be allowed to park street side and enter the park by foot.

Once the epidemic has been declared under control the Village will sanitize all park equipment and facilities prior to reopening to the general public

Morning News Briefing

The Coronavirus has claimed its first life in Genesee County.
Officials said a person, over the age of 65, who resided in the central part of the county, has died from the virus.
There are now 12 positive cases of COVID-19 in the county.
Orleans County has a total of five cases.

 

More coronavirus cases and deaths are being reported across New York State. Over 1,200 people have been killed by the virus while the number of confirmed cases is more than 66,000. Governor Cuomo said he believes the highest number of infections is still a couple of weeks away.

 

The Village of Albion has announced that its closing all village parks to help slow the spread of the virus. Albion police say there have been too many people playing football and basketball and using playground equipment in a way that does not conform to social distancing guidelines.

 

A new poll shows New Yorkers are giving Governor Cuomo high marks for how he’s dealing with the Coronavirus crisis. According to the Siena College poll, 87 percent of those surveyed approve of the job he’s doing. When it comes to the federal response, only 41 percent of those polled say they believe President Trump is doing a good job.

 

Traffic on the New York State Thruway has declined during the Coronavirus outbreak. Officials say traffic dropped over 30 percent between March 8th and the 28th.

 

The Girl Scouts of Western New York has moved to all-online sales of cookies. They had to cancel more than 750 planned, in-person cookie sales booths.

First COVID-19 Death in Genesee County

Genesee County has recorded its first COVID-19 death.
Public Health Director Paul Pettit confirmed this afternoon that a person over the age from the central part of Genesee County has died.
The patient had been seriously ill before testing positive for the Corona Virus.
Pettit also reported today there are three new cases of COVID-19 bringing to total to 12.

Albion Closes all Parks

News Release: Village of Albion Police

The Village of Albion has Closed All Village Parks Effective Immediately. This closure is to help conform with Center for Disease Control guidance measures to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 Coronavirus. Many people have been seen at the parks on Playground Equipment, Playing Basketball and Football.

The Village of Albion would like all citizens to follow the CDC Guidelines below:

PLEASE REMEMBER THAT WE ARE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER AND WE MUST ALL DO ARE PART.

Know How it Spreads
• There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

• The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus.

• The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person. o Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet). o Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

• These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.

• There is no exact scientific study as to how long the Virus Lives on Surfaces. Clean your hands often

• Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

• If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.

• Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands. Avoid close contact • Avoid close contact with people who are sick

• Put distance between yourself and other people

• Distance is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.

Morning News Briefing

The grim tally of COVID-19 infections in Genesee County has increased by one.
Late on Saturday, health department officials revealed that a person under the age of 65, living in the central part of the county, has contracted the virus. This person is under mandatory isolation at home. People this person had had contact with have been notified.
This latest case brings to eight the number of COVID-19 infections in Genesee County, a number expected to keep increasing.
New York State officials are reporting nine cases in the county – no reason given for the discrepancy.

Governor Cuomo is projecting a grim outlook on the impact coronavirus will have on New York State.
The governor said he believes thousands of New Yorkers will likely die due to the illness.
The state currently has the highest number of confirmed cases in the country with over 59,000 while the death toll is also increasing.

Lawmakers are still working to hammer out a state budget ahead of the April 1st deadline. Members of the Legislature are expected to start taking a look at budget bills today. The governor says negotiations continue on several key issues including bail reform and legalizing gestational surrogacy. He also says the final budget agreement will likely include major cuts to education funding.

Here is a bit of good news, Western New York drivers are continuing to pay less at the pump.
According to Triple A, the average cost for a gallon of regular gas is $2.33. That’s down six cents in the last week and is 23-cents cheaper than this time a month ago.

WBTA Weekend News Brief

COVID-19 continues its spread across Genesee County.

UPDATE: 6:15PM Saturday, Mar 28: The Genesee County Health Dept. reported an additional case of COVID-19 bringing the total number of cases to eight. Officials said this person is under the age of 65, lives in the central part of the county and is under mandatory isolation at home.

Paul Pettit, Director of Public Health

According to the latest numbers issued by the county’s health department late on Friday afternoon there have been three new cases of the Coronavirus. This brings to total number of confirmed infections in Genesee County to seven. Public Health Director Paul Pettit said of the new cases two persons are over the age of 65 living in thne center part of the county. The other case, he said, involved a person under the age of 65.

According to Pettit none of the three new cases appear to be related and none were under any type of quarantine. Pettit believes the exposure is what officials call “community spread,” transmission of the virus hot within a household.

At United Memorial Medical Center triage tents have been set up in the parking lot to pre-screen potential patients. COVID-19 testing is being done at the facility, but hospital President Dan Ireland says there is no guarantee you will get a test just by showing up…

PHOTO: Dan Ireland, President of UMMC

In Genesee County, 17 people are under precautionary quarantine and 34 people are under mandatory quarantine.

A program reminder: on Monday afternoon WBTA will present another hour-long special: “COVID-19, a Local View.”
We will once again have a panel of experts on hand to answer your questions about the status of the virus in Genesee County and the response to it.
Our special will air this Monday afternoon at one o’clock on WBTA FM & AM, online at WBTAi-dot-com and will be video recorded for playback later in the day on The Batavian.

If you are in the mood for some positive news the popular ice cream stand Blondies Sip-N-Dip has reopened for the season.
The couple says Blondies will observe social distance. They will serve customers at the East Main St. Rd. location in Batavia via a drive up/walk up window.

Health Dept Briefing, Friday Mar 30th

 

There are three new cases of Coronavirus reported in Genesee County. This brings the total number of infections to 7.
Public Health Director Paul Pettit issued his daily briefing late this afternoon

Of the the new cases, Pettit said none of those people were under any type of quarantine and are not related. He believes the exposure is what officials call, community spread – not spread within the home.
Pettit said of those people who have respiratory symptoms and have been tested for COVID-19 are negative for the disease. He said this is indicative that other respiratory illness, such as the flu, are still around

PHOTO: Paul Pettit

UMMC President Dan Ireland said that COVID-19 testing is being done at the tent facility set-up in the hospital parking lot but there is no guarantee you will get a test just by showing up

PHOTO: Dan Ireland

WBTA is planning another one-hour special, COVID-19, A Local View, for this Monday afternoon at one o’clock.
We will be taking your phoned in questions for a panel of experts including two doctors from UMMC, officials from the county health department and Emergency Management Office.

Friday COVID-19 Update in Genesee and Orleans Counties

News Release

SITUATIONAL UPDATE

For Friday, March 27

New Cases

·         As of 2:00 p.m. today:

o   Genesee County received 3 new positive cases of COVID-19 for a total of 7 positive cases

§  One over the age of 65 residing in central Genesee County

§  One over the age of 65 residing in central Genesee County

§  One person under the age of 65 residing in western Genesee County

§  Currently three of the 7 positive cases under mandatory isolation are in the hospital.

o   None of the new positive cases were under precautionary or mandatory quarantine when they became symptomatic and are not believed to be connected.

·         For Orleans: No new positive cases have been reported today

·         Contact tracing has been initiated for all the new cases.  Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms becomes present).  If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated.  Limited information is provided to the public in compliance with HIPAA regulations and out of the respect of those impacted by this virus.  When, and if, there is a situation where potential contact is made in a public location where contact tracing doesn’t have actual names we will send out a media announcement to help seek contacts.

 

Cumulative Data

·         To Date:  Genesee County has received 75 negative test results and Orleans County has received 74 negative test results for COVID-19. These negative tests give us a good indicator of what’s going on in our community.  As discussed before, Flu continues to be prevalent with 8 in Orleans and 22 in Genesee for the week ending 3/14.  This data continues to show a high number of respiratory illness in our counties is not COVID-19

·         Orleans County: 6 people are under precautionary quarantine, 8 people are under mandatory quarantine, and 4 people are under mandatory isolation 1 of whom is hospitalized and 3 are recovering at home (one out of county).

·         Genesee County: 17 people are under precautionary quarantine, 34 people are under mandatory quarantine, and 4 people are recovering under mandatory isolation at home and 3 person are under mandatory isolation and are hospitalized.

 

·         Healthcare providers are advising patients undergoing swabbing that are symptomatic (based on availability and screening for high-risk) for COVID-19 to self-isolate until test results are received and COVID-19 is ruled out.  Follow your healthcare provider’s advice.

·         Currently, NYS clearance protocol for discontinuation of mandatory isolation for persons with confirmed COVID-19 is the following: it has been at least 7 days since the initial positive test for COVID-19, at least 3 days without fever and no use of fever-reducing medication, improvement in the signs and symptoms of the illness and 2 negative swabs at least 24 hours apart.    Swabbing through the Health Departments is warranted as part of our quarantine / isolation protocol for those who become symptomatic.  We are not providing community testing at this time.  We will be announcing further information on this as local capacity increases.

·         Please remain home if ill, with all of the directives regarding social distancing that are still be in place, especially if a person has a negative COVID-19 result it is important to limit physical contact.  Flu and COVID-19 are still transmittable and people should continue to remain home and limiting contact with others.  Do not be afraid of people because they may be coughing or sneezing, they may have allergies, but continue to keep your distance (at least 6’).

 

·         Respect / Social Responsibility / Fear mongering / Consequences – A reminder Genesee and Orleans Counties are small counties where just about everyone ‘knows your name,’ with that in mind the Health Departments are mandated to adhere to HIPAA regulations therefore we are not releasing potential identifying information of anyone who is under our care.

o   If during contact tracing there is an issue of missing potential contacts we will provide locations.  Not everyone who coughs or sneezes has a respiratory virus.  People need to be respectful of the process and the guidance surrounding social distancing.  COVID-19 is now community transmissible therefore people need to take social distancing seriously.

o   There are consequences for not adhering to the directives.  Non-compliance may prolong the spread of COVID-19 as well as increasing the spread which can overwhelm our healthcare systems.

o   Sticking to the basics, limiting exposure to the public, frequent handwashing, staying home if ill with any respiratory illness, keeping 6’ distance from other people and sharing creative ideas to keep in touch with family and friends are what we need.

o   Talking about who has or hasn’t been tested, is sick or sharing rumors about anything COVID-19 is increasing anxiety in many people.  Be respectful and stay home as much as possible.  It is safe to go outside or for a ride, but be mindful to keep at least 6’ distance between other people

OPERATIONAL UPDATES

        Community Spread:  Locations of positive cases are not indicative (telling) of where potential exposures can occur.  It is not vital to know locations as the virus is considered to be everywhere.  That is why we encourage everyone to continue with social distancing, frequent handwashing, proper cough/sneeze hygiene and frequent disinfecting of frequently touched objects and surfaces.

·         Medical Concerns:  If you feel you may have COVID-19, call your primary care provider or healthcare facility ahead of time. DO NOT GO DIRECTLY THERE, CALL AHEAD TO GET GUIDANCE.   Swabbing will be based on those who are in higher risk categories – elderly and immune compromised and those with underlying health issues.

o   Swab sample results are coming back slower than expected. With more testing, we expect this will continue.  Whenever anyone is swabbed for potential COVID-19, self-isolation is advised until the test result is received.

·         Snowbirds are returning to our counties:  They may have returned from areas not hit as hard as New York, may have been exposed while out of state, and/or are members of the higher-risk population (over 65 / underlying health issues) we encourage you to self-isolate and monitor your health.

o   If you become symptomatic, call your healthcare provider for guidance.

o   Some may be concerned about exposure when going for supplies and prescription refills – many stores and pharmacies are providing special hours for seniors and people with underlying healthcare issues.  There are also several stores / restaurants that provide curbside pick-up and delivery services call ahead and ask.

o   Check in with family and friends and your social networks via phone or electronic means often to limit loneliness.

·         Toilet Paper:  A reminder that flushing non-traditional toilet paper, such as tissues, paper towel, baby wipes and more will more than likely cause plumbing issues.  On-site septic systems and public sewers are not built to handle these types of materials and will cause problems.  If you are using non-traditional products as toilet paper, they are to be thrown in the trash receptacles.

 

FRAUD ALERT

·         At this time there are no FDA-approved drugs or treatments for COVID-19.

·         There are also no over-the-counter COVID-19 tests. If you get an email, phone call, offer by mail or other solicitation for these scams, hang up and ignore them.

·         This is a very important warning to reinforce for every County resident.

·         The best medical advice for you comes from your healthcare provider.

NEW YORK STATE CASES / RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE

   Governor Andrew Cuomo announced today at his 11:30 a.m. press conference there are 16,272 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total to 44,635 positive cases in NYS.

·         6,481 (15%) COVID-19 patients are hospitalized.

·         In today’s Governor’s briefing he stated schools are to remain closed for another 2 weeks and will be reassessed then.  Locally our schools are monitoring the local impact and making decisions on a week-by-week basis as to when schools will re-open.  Continue to follow your local school guidance.

 

 

Morning News Briefing

Two new cases of the coronavirus infection have been reported in Genesee County raising the total number of those infected to four.
According to the latest report from the county Health Department yesterday afternoon two residents tested positive for the virus, one person was under the age of 65 and the other was older.
Both patients live in the central part of the county, have been placed under mandatory isolation and been hospitalized.
The Health Department has already initiated contact tracing for both new cases and known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine.
If any of the contacts begin showing symptoms they will be tested as well.
If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department and quarantined.
Also as of yesterday afternoon Orleans County had one new case.
The individual is under 65 and has been isolated in an adjacent county.

The U.S. now has the most cases of coronavirus in the world.
Data from Johns Hopkins University shows the U.S. now has more than 82-thousand cases, passing both Italy and China.
Over eleven-hundred people have died in the U.S. Most of those deaths have been in New York and Washington State.

The news is getting worse when it comes to the number of New Yorkers infected by the coronavirus.
Officials say there are now over 37-thousand confirmed cases while the number of deaths attributed to the disease is also rising.
Governor Cuomo is still predicting the pandemic will overwhelm the state’s health care system and says work continues on making more hospital beds available.
Experts believe the number of coronavirus cases in New York could peak in two or three weeks.

Three more Erie County residents have died as a result of the coronavirus.
Officials say the individuals were a woman in her 70s, man in his 70s and man in his 80s.
Their names haven’t been released.
A total of five Erie County residents have passed away due to the illness.
Meanwhile, the number of coronavirus cases in the county is now over 220 and expected to keep rising.

The death of a fourth Monroe County resident has been attributed to the coronavirus.
No information about the individual has been released.
Meanwhile, the number of infected people in the county has risen past 145.
Over 30 people have been hospitalized due to the disease and more than 500 are in mandatory quarantine.

The United Memorial Medical Center in Batavia along with several other Rochester Regional Health hospitals added tents to their facilities this week as an extension of primary care services.
The tent sites are being used to decrease the potential of exposure to COVID-19 while keeping patients and individuals safe.
The tents are not just to be used for COVID-19 testing but health care workers will evaluate for other medical issues.
Beginning Monday UMMC will staff the tents from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Before coming to the site, people experiencing symptoms are still encouraged to contact their primary care provider.

The Law Street Yard Waste Station remains closed until further notice.
All non-essential operations including the Waste Station have been suspended for the time being due to the precautions related to COVID-19.
When suspensions are lifted the City will provide additional information as to when the Yard Waste Station is re-opening.

Two New COVID-19 Cases in Genesee County

News Release: Genesee Orleans Health Depts.

SITUATIONAL UPDATE
New Cases
• As of 2:00 p.m. today:
Genesee County received 2 new positive cases of COVID-19
Orleans County received 1 new positive case.

• For Genesee: Two new cases, one positive case is under the age of 65 and resides in the central part of Genesee County. The second positive case is over the age of 65 and also resides in the central part of the county. These two latest cases bring to four the number Based on the ongoing investigation, these cases are not connected. These two individuals are under mandatory isolation and are in the hospital.
• For Orleans: The new positive case is under the age of 65 and is a resident of the central part of the county. This individual is being isolated in an adjacent county.
• Contact tracing has been initiated for all the new cases. Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms becomes present). If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the County Health Department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed if indicated.

Cumulative Data
• To Date: Genesee County has received 61 negative test results and Orleans County has received 61 negative test results for COVID-19.
• Orleans County: 6 people are under precautionary quarantine, 8 people are under mandatory quarantine, and 4 people are under mandatory isolation 1 of whom is hospitalized and 3 are recovering at home (one out of county).
• Genesee County: 18 people are under precautionary quarantine, 26 people are under mandatory quarantine, and 2 people are under mandatory isolation at home and 2 people are under mandatory isolation and are hospitalized.

• Healthcare providers must advise patients undergoing testing for COVID-19 to self-isolate until testing is resulted and COVID-19 is ruled out.
o If COVID-19 testing results are positive, patients must be continued on mandatory isolation as noted below:
 IF a patient was on mandatory or precautionary quarantine when tested and results for COVID-19 are negative, healthcare providers must advise patients to continue quarantine until 14 days after last travel or exposure to a known case (per public authorities).
 If a patient was not previously on quarantine and was tested for illness consistent with COVID-19, once the result is negative and COVID-19 is ruled out, the patient may be advised that they need not be on quarantine.
• Currently, NYS clearance protocol for discontinuation of mandatory isolation for persons with confirmed COVID-19 is the following: it has been at least 7 days since the initial positive test for COVID-19, at least 3 days without fever and no use of fever-reducing medication, improvement in the signs and symptoms of the illness and 2 negative swabs at least 24 hours apart. Swabbing through the Health Departments is warranted as part of our quarantine / isolation protocol for those who become symptomatic. We are not providing community testing at this time.
• Please remain home if ill, with all of the directives regarding social distancing that are still be in place, especially if a person has a negative COVID-19 result it is important to limit physical contact. The flu and COVID-19 are still transmittable and people should continue to remain home and limiting contact with others. Do not be afraid of people because they may be coughing or sneezing, they may have allergies, but continue to keep your distance (at least 6’).

OPERATIONAL UPDATES
• If you feel you may have COVID-19, call your primary care provider or healthcare facility ahead of time. DO NOT GO DIRECTLY THERE, CALL AHEAD TO GET GUIDANCE. Swabbing will be based on those who are at higher risk categories – elderly and immune compromised and those with underlying health issues.
• Swab sample results are coming back slower than expected. With more testing, we expect this will continue. Whenever anyone is swabbed for potential COVID-19, self-isolation is advised until the test result is received.

RETURNING SNOWBIRDS / Those at Higher-Risk
• We encourage people to seek creative ways to keep in touch, especially for those who are returning home from their winter residences and those who are older and/or have underlying health conditions. If you have access to the internet there are several applications that you can use for free to ‘connect’ with family and friends.

NEW YORK STATE CASES / RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE
• Governor Andrew Cuomo announced today at his 11:30 a.m. press conference there are 6,448 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total to 37,258 positive cases in NYS.
• 5,327 (14%) COVID-19 patients are hospitalized.
• NYS is seeking volunteers to work as part of the state’s surge healthcare force, so far 40,000 have volunteered. To volunteer go to: https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/get-involved-how-you-can-help

Genesee County Park & Forest Seeks Intern

News Release

East Bethany, NY – York State’s First County Forest has an Environmental Education Assistant
Internship position open for May – August of 2020. The position is administered through the Student
Conservation Association (SCA) and is located at Genesee County Park & Forest in East Bethany,
NY. Applicants must be at least 18 years old with a high school diploma or GED and a US
citizen. Environmental Education Assistants develop, organize, plan and lead environmental education
programs to audiences of all ages in a wide variety of settings under the guidance of park staff.
Environmental Education Assistants also coordinate the efforts of park volunteers.

Job duties include but are not limited to:
 Conducting programs for schools, summer rec groups, scouts and the general public
 Providing customer service to park visitors and program participants
 Planning volunteer and park events
 Writing articles for the parks seasonal newsletter
 Marketing of park events, programs and resources
 Scheduling and coordinating volunteers to assist with park events and projects
 Providing training and orientation to new park volunteers

SCA interns earn a stipend of $125/week while serving and are eligible for an education award of $1,612
that may be used for student loans, tuition, classes or future college costs.
This position requires 16 weeks of 40 hour/week of service from May until August of 2020. Hours are 6
am to 5 pm Wednesday through Saturday. Flexibility is given in order to cover the prescheduled
programs that are outside of the normal working hours within the 40 hour work week.

Additional benefits:
 First Aid/AED/CPR training provided
 Experience and on-the-job training in Environmental Education and Volunteer Coordinating
 Deeper knowledge of natural history and ecology
 Job duties include volunteer outings (kayaking, hiking)
 Networking with professionals in Environmental Science and Education

To apply:

Apply online HERE
For additional information contact Shannon Lyaski, Conservation Education Program Coordinator at Shannon.Lyaski@co.genesee.ny.us.

City of Batavia Delays Yard Waste Opening

News Release

The Law Street Yard Waste Station opening has been delayed. Due to the precautions related to COVID-19 all non-essential operations have been suspended for the time being. When suspensions are lifted the City will provide additional information as to when the Yard Waste Station is opening.

Thank you for your cooperation at this time.

CITY OF BATAVIA EXTENDS GRANT DEADLINE FOR NEW YORK MAIN STREET GRANT APPLICATIONS

Press Release:

BATAVIA, NY – The City of Batavia announced that applications for a $300,000 New York Main Street Grant Program that is available to all building owners within the Batavia Improvement District (BID) and Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI) area will be extended until April 10, 2020.

In light of recent events, mandates and changes to all of our routines, the City of Batavia will extend the due date of these grant fund applications to the close of business on April 10th, 2020.

The City of Batavia encourages all residents to stay safe in these unprecedented times and continue to support your local businesses in any way possible. Our local businesses need our community support now, more than ever.

Guidelines and the applications can be found on the BDC website: http://bataviadevelopmentcorp.org/main-street-building-improvements If you have any questions please contact Andrew Maguire by email at amaguire@bataviadevelopmentcorp.org

Morning News Briefing

One more Genesee County resident has tested positive for coronavirus.
The individual who resides in the central part of Genesee County is reportedly under the age of 65 and remains under mandatory isolation while recovering at home.
Contact tracing has already been initiated and known contacts have been placed under mandatory quarantine to be swabbed if they are showing any symptoms of the virus.
As of yesterday afternoon, Genesee County has received 49 negative test results and Orleans, 52 negative test results for COVID-19.
Orleans County has 6 people are under precautionary quarantine, 7 people in mandatory quarantine, and 3 people are in mandatory isolation 1 of whom is hospitalized and 2 are recovering at home.
In Genesee County 18 people are under precautionary quarantine, 16 people are under mandatory quarantine, and 2 people are in mandatory isolation recovering at home.
There will be no community testing at this time according to the Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments.
They say if you feel you may have COVID-19, call your primary care provider or healthcare facility ahead of time and do not go there directly before receiving guidance from your provider.

Coronavirus Cases in New York State surpass 30,000 mark
Governor Cuomo announced the new milestone of infection yesterday and the said the death toll due to the virus is rising also.
With the expectation of a surge of coronavirus cases in the coming weeks Cuomo’s continuing to ask for help from the federal government.
The governor is promising the state will send any unused medical equipment and supplies to other areas that may need them once the worst of the outbreak is over in New York.

The City of Batavia announced that applications for a $300,000 New York Main Street Grant Program that is available to all building owners within the Batavia Improvement District and Downtown Revitalization Initiative area will be extended until April 10th.
Guidelines and the applications can be found on the BDC website at http://bataviadevelopmentcorp.org/main-street-building-improvements and any questions should be directed to Andrew Maguire by email at amaguire@bataviadevelopmentcorp.org

A school resource officer with the Buffalo police department is in critical condition after testing positive for coronavirus.
According to The Buffalo News, the 65 year old is in a medically induced coma at Erie County Medical Center.
Three other members of the department have also reportedly been infected with the disease.
Officers have received hand sanitizer and gloves to lower their chances of getting sick.
They can also give out masks to protect themselves from people who may be ill.

Erie County officials say a second person has died due to the coronavirus.
The individual was a man in his 70s but his name isn’t being released.
There are now over 140 coronavirus cases in the county and due to a dwindling amount of medical supplies there are restrictions on who is eligible for testing.
Individuals who can get tested include health care workers, people living in places like nursing homes and members of law enforcement.

Wegmans is working on giving its cashiers some extra protection from germs.
The supermarket chain will be installing plexiglass shields at its stores to screen employees from customers.
Cashiers are also being told to wipe down their stations between transactions.
Those workers have been at an increased risk of getting sick as customers pack stores to buy items due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Health Department Issues Daily COVID-19 Update for Genesee & Orleans Counties

SITUATIONAL UPDATE – Provided by Genesee Orleans Health Departments

• As of 2:00 p.m. today Genesee County received 1 new positive cases of COVID-19.
• The positive case is under the age of 65 and resides in the central part of Genesee County. The individual is under mandatory isolation and is recovering at home.
• Contact tracing has been initiated for the new case. Known contacts have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated (if symptoms present). If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the Genesee County Health Department.
• Since the onset of testing, Genesee County has received 49 negative test results and Orleans, 52 negative test results for COVID-19.
• Orleans County: 6 people are under precautionary quarantine, 7 people are under mandatory quarantine, and 3 people are under mandatory isolation 1 of whom is hospitalized and 2 are recovering at home.
• Genesee County: 18 people are under precautionary quarantine, 16 people are under mandatory quarantine, and 2 people are under mandatory isolation at home where they are recovering.
• As we receive more test results, local contact tracing will continue within our departments for any positive results. The cases and stories are being built and documented. Contact tracing is initiated based on the day the identified positive case became symptomatic. Identified contacts are notified by the local health department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed as indicated.
• Currently, NYS clearance criteria require 2 negative COVID-19 swabbing results prior to being released. Swabbing through the Health Departments is warranted as part of our quarantine / isolation protocol for those who become symptomatic. We are not providing community testing at this time.
• Please remain home if ill, with all of the directives regarding social distancing that are still be in place, especially if a person has a negative COVID-19 result it is important to limit physical contact. The flu and COVID-19 are still transmittable and people should continue to remain home and limiting contact with others. Do not be afraid of people because they may be coughing or sneezing, they may have allergies, but continue to keep your distance (at least 6’)

OPERATIONAL UPDATES
• If you feel you may have COVID-19, call your primary care provider or healthcare facility ahead of time. DO NOT GO DIRECTLY THERE, CALL AHEAD TO GET GUIDANCE. Swabbing will be based on those who are at higher risk categories – elderly and immune compromised and those with underlying health issues.
• Swab sample results are coming back slower than expected. With more testing, we expect this will continue. Whenever anyone is swabbed for potential COVID-19, self-isolation is strongly encouraged until the test result is received.

RETURNING SNOWBIRDS
• Due to the number of positive cases in New York State, there are stricter guidelines in place and may be different from your winter address. All large gatherings have been canceled or postponed. We strongly encourage anyone over 65 or those with underlying health issues to consider self-quarantine which means to limit contact with others as much as possible. Stay at home as much as possible as this age group is one of the higher-risk groups. This includes visiting the grocery store to limit exposure to any respiratory virus. Check with your grocery store / pharmacy to see if they have special considerations for seniors and those with underlying health issues such as special hours, curbside pick-up or delivery. Monitor your symptoms and if you develop a fever, cough, or shortness of breath, call your primary care provider immediately.
• If you are in need of household essentials such as groceries or prescriptions, ask a family member, neighbor, someone in your social support network for assistance. They may be able to shop for your needs and leave the items outside your door so they do not have any physical contact with you.

NEW YORK STATE CASES / RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE
• Governor Andrew Cuomo announced today at his press conference there are 5,146 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total to 30,811 positive cases in NYS.
• 3,805 (12%) COVID-19 patients are hospitalized.

COVID-19 RELIABLE SOURCES
• New York State Department of Health – click here
• CDC – click here
• Genesee County Health Department – click here
• Orleans County Health Department – click here
• If you believe an employer is violating either existing labor laws or recently issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo, please contact the NYS Attorney General’s office at (212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov
• Mental Health in both counties are available in various capacities and the Care + Crisis Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text 741741 for anxiety and stress
• New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling

Genesee Valley Wind Ensemble Press Release: UPDATE Spring 2020

Press Release:

Re: Spring Concert Cancelled

Who: Genesee Valley Wind Ensemble
What: Spring Concert
Where: Alexander High School
When: Saturday, April 25, 2020- Cancelled 4:00 PM

To Whom It May Concern:

Due to the density control guidelines and conditions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic the Genesee Valley Wind Ensemble, along side with many local music/arts organizations, has cancelled their Spring 2020 concert at Alexander High School.

Please stay safe, healthy and we look forward to performing for our community at a future date.

Sincerely,
GVWE Board

ELECTION COMMISSIONERS’ ASSOCIATION OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK

Press Release:

The New York State Elections Commissioners’ Association is calling for immediate action by the Governor and New York State Legislature to protect our electoral process during the COVID-19 pandemic. Election Boards throughout the state are risking personnel safety and health to prepare for impending elections on April 28, 2020. We are facing critical shortages of inspectors and polling places due to the ongoing public health crisis. Over the next week, BOEs will find it almost impossible to meet mission critical deadlines for testing machines and preparing ballots because of staff shortages due to the ongoing stay-at-home order. We ask Governor Andrew Cuomo, NYS Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, and NYS Senate Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins to consider the following items by either Executive Order or Legislative action:

1.) Postponing the Democratic Presidential Primary scheduled for April 28th to June 23rd. Fielding inspectors in the midst of this health crisis is dangerous and may be impossible. Traditional polling places may be unusable as they are currently restricted or closed to the public. Postponing until June will not only give us time to plan, but will ease the burdens on host counties budgets that are devastated by the COVID-19 crisis.

2.) Amend 8-400 of NYS Election Law to allow for Absentee Balloting during all times of declared state of emergency due to infectious disease or pandemic. This will allow all voters who are at-risk but perhaps not yet sick to apply for and receive an absentee ballot. At risk or vulnerable citizens should not have to make decisions on whether to exercise their right to vote or risk their health.

3.) For all Primary & Special Elections: Give wide latitude to the local Board of Elections to consolidate polling places and election districts to best operate the election. While we hope the COVID 19 crisis will be better by June, it is quite likely we will have limited numbers of polling places and inspectors even then. We need this flexibility to adjust to circumstances on the ground in our jurisdictions that may be changing right up until the June 23rd Election.

Acting on these items will buy us precious time and save our host counties significant amount of resources while also preserving the rights of voters and safety and health of Election Workers. Every day that we do not act makes us less prepared and wastes valuable time and money.

Morning News Briefing

In order to accommodate families and residents impacted by the response to COVID-19, the City has decided to suspend enforcement of overnight parking regulations until further notice allowing overnight parking.
If a vehicle is blocking work for the Department of Public Works or in the event of an emergency, residents will be asked to move their vehicle or it may be towed.
All other parking regulations such as blocking a fire hydrant, parking in a fire lane or parking in a handicap zone will still be strictly enforced.
Residents are also reminded to prevent theft by locking their vehicles and always removing valuables.

Police Officers in Batavia will no longer provide courtesy unlock of vehicles, unless there are exigent circumstances such as a child or pet locked inside while taking enhanced extra precautions when responding to calls for service.
To better aid in appropriate response from emergency personnel, callers to dispatch will need to answer screening questions.
City of Batavia Police Officers and other emergency personnel may wear respirator masks, protective gloves, clear safety glasses and other personal protective equipment when answering calls.
Anyone with signs or symptoms for Coronavirus should inform dispatchers, officers, and emergency personnel as soon as practicable.

As of yesterday afternoon there are now 3 new positive cases of coronavirus in Orleans County and still 1 confirmed case for Genesee County.
In Orleans County 4 people are under precautionary quarantine, 13 people are under mandatory quarantine, and 3 people are under mandatory isolation 1 of whom is hospitalized and 2 are recovering at home.
The contact tracing has been initiated for the new cases.
Known contacts to these two cases have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated.

In Genesee County 7 people are under precautionary quarantine, 21 people are under mandatory quarantine, and 1 person is under mandatory isolation at home and is recovering.
According to Paul Pettit, Director of Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments “We will start to see our numbers increase moving forward.”

The first coronavirus death has been confirmed in Erie County.
Officials say the individual was a woman in her 80’s but didn’t release her name or say if she had any underlying medical conditions.
Meanwhile, County Executive Mark Poloncarz says the number of people infected by the disease has passed 100 and is expected to keep getting bigger as more test results come back.
The highest number of cases are in Buffalo and Amherst.
Poloncarz is continuing to urge folks to keep taking part in social distancing to try and slow the spread of the illness.

Monroe County officials have confirmed a third death due to the coronavirus.
They say the individual was a patient at Strong Memorial Hospital but didn’t release their name.
Meanwhile, the number of county residents infected by the disease is now sitting at 106.
As of yesterday, 15 people have been hospitalized after being diagnosed with coronavirus.
Over 470 more are also in mandatory quarantine.

One of the candidates for the vacant 27th Congressional District seat is calling for the upcoming special election to be rescheduled.
Democrat Nate McMurray tells The Buffalo News that due to the coronavirus, the health and safety of voters and poll workers can’t be put at risk.
McMurray is challenging Republican Chris Jacobs in the special election which is set for April 28th.
The winner will fill the seat left open by former Republican Congressman Chris Collins who resigned after pleading guilty to federal insider trading charges.

County Health Department Daily Briefing

 

SITUATIONAL UPDATE:

·         As of 2:00 p.m. today the lab confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 is now 2 new positives for Orleans County and still 1 confirmed case for Genesee County.  We have the initial 1 confirmed case of COVID-19 identified in Genesee County and now have 3 confirmed cases of COVID-19 for Orleans County.  Since the onset of testing, Genesee County has received 44 negative test results and Orleans, 43 negative test results for COVID-19.

·         Orleans County: 4 people are under precautionary quarantine, 13 people are under mandatory quarantine, and 3 people are under mandatory isolation 1 of whom is hospitalized and 2 are recovering at home.  The new positive cases reside in the center part of the county and are not associated.  One of the individuals is over 65 and the other is younger than 65.  The contact tracing has been initiated for the new cases.  Known contacts to these two cases have already been placed under mandatory quarantine and will be swabbed if indicated.  If a person is identified as a contact, they will be notified by the Health Department.

·         Genesee County: 7 people are under precautionary quarantine, 21 people are under mandatory quarantine, and 1 person (positive case) is under mandatory isolation at home and is recovering.

·         “We will start to see our numbers increase moving forward.  We expect to see increase in local cases due to increased swabbing and testing as this is in line with the reality of community spread,” stated Paul Pettit, Director of Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments.

·         As we receive more test results, local contact tracing will continue within our departments. The cases and stories are being built and documented.  Contact tracing is determined the day the identified positive case had symptoms.  Identified contacts are notified by the local health department, quarantined and if warranted, swabbed as indicated.  Currently, NYS clearance criteria requires 2 negative COVID-19 swabbing results prior to being released.  Swabbing through the Health Departments is warranted as part of our quarantine / isolation protocol for those who become symptomatic.  We are not providing community testing at this time.

·         Reminder as discussed last week.  We are placing individuals on quarantine and isolation from the health department but individuals will also be asked by their provider to self-isolate if they have been swabbed until the results come back.  Once the county receives test results from the state (whether the swabbing occurred at primary care provider or through contact with the health department) it is then determined whether the individual remains on quarantine, released or is changed to mandatory isolation (for positive swab results) per the NYS guidance.  This is very important. Number one the person tested because they were symptomatic, that’s why they’re being swabbed and secondly, we don’t want the person exposing others to illness (COVID-19 or otherwise).  Please remain home if ill, with all of the directives regarding social distancing that are still be in place, especially if a person has a negative COVID-19 result.  The flu and COVID-19 are still transmittable and people should continue to remain home and limiting contact with others.  Do not be afraid of people because they may be coughing or sneezing, they may have allergies, but continue to keep your distance (at least 6’).

·         This week, United Memorial Medical Center completed the assembly and installation of a series of tents outside the hospital’s Emergency Department. This is a multi-tent system that will act as an extension of their primary care offices.  Additional details will follow as the project progresses.

·         On Monday, March 23rd, hospitals in NYS were mandated to increase their capacity by 50%; although, the Governor urged hospitals to consider increasing their capacity by 100%.

·         Phone banks have been set up in both counties to assist with the overflow of calls.  Callers will be asked about the nature of their call and the staff will triage and forward the calls as appropriate.  We encourage businesses, to contact the Department of Labor if they have questions about their business operations.

 

 OPERATIONAL UPDATES

·         COVID-19 swabbing / testing at the Health Departments and community continues to be limited.   If you feel you may have COVID-19, call your primary care provider or healthcare facility ahead of time. DO NOT GO DIRECTLY THERE, CALL AHEAD TO GET GUIDANCE.   We will be screening and focusing on our at-risk populations – elderly and immune compromised and those with underlying health issues.  Primary care providers and some health systems are offering testing in both Monroe and Erie Counties.  We’re still waiting on more public / private labs to sign-on soon along with swabbing kits.

·         Lab testing has been bogged down and sample results are coming back slower.  Again this is a source of frustration for the public and us.  We continue to push these unacceptable issues back up to the state.

·         We are asking individuals to follow the orders that are put out there.  If you believe an employer is violating either existing labor laws or recently issued @NYGocCuomo executive orders, please contact the @NewYorkStateAG’s office at (212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov.

 

https://ag.ny.gov/press-release/2020/attorney-general-james-urges-employees-file-complaints-against-employers-ignoring

 

 

NEW YORK STATE CASES / RESTRICTIONS / GUIDANCE

·         As of March 24, 2020 at 11 a.m. according to Governor Andrew Cuomo there are 4,790 new positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the total to 25,665 in NYS.

·         Monroe County: 96 confirmed cases in Monroe County.

·         Erie County: 107 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Erie County.

·         Wyoming County: 4 Confirmed COVID-19 cases

·         Niagara County: 12 Confirmed COVID-19 cases

·         Effective Saturday March, 21st beginning at 8 p.m., all personal care services such as hair salons, barber shops, nail salons, and tattoo parlors in NYS will be mandated to close. These professions cannot conduct business while maintaining social distancing.

·         On Friday, March 20, 2020, Cuomo announced that he will sign an executive order mandating that 100% of the workforce must stay home (excluding essential services). This order excludes healthcare, pharmacies, grocery stores, etc.

·         Civil fines and mandatory closures for business that are not in compliance will be issued.

·         DOH Test Kits are NOT available. More information will be forthcoming when we receive notice.

·         PPE is in extremely short supply with no guidance as to when more will be supplied.

·         Gatherings with 50 people or more are not permitted for the next 8 weeks.

·         Enacting Matilda’s Law to protect New Yorkers age 70+ and those with compromised immune systems

    • Remain indoors
    • Can go outside for solitary exercise
    • Pre-screen all visitors by taking their temperature
    • Wear a mask in the company of others
    • Stay at least 6 feet from others
    • Do not take public transportation unless urgent and absolutely necessary

 

GENERAL HEALTH REMINDERS / INFORMATION

Flu – for the week ending March 14:  Orleans -8 flu that week and 257 for the season; Genesee – 22 cases of flu and 588 for the season!  Statewide cases during this time frame 6,075 with a total NYS cases for the season to date, 153,293.  Compared to COVID-19 the risk of the flu and what many people may be experiencing is higher.

We are receiving back negative COVID-19 test results from the lab, but we are still having flu – more flu and other respiratory illness as we look at the data.  Keep this in mind.  Everyone should be social distancing and staying home.

 

·     Mental Health in both counties are available in various capacities and the Care + Crisis

Helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text 741741 for anxiety and stress.

 

·         Be alert to scams…there are no FDA-approved at-home test kits for COVID-19.

·         Please refer to the county web sites for current daily updates and guidance documents.  Orleans County’s web site is still down, so we ask to visit the Genesee County website or follow GOHealthNY (user names) on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.  We are also providing updates on the Genesee Ready and Orleans Aware apps.

·         Remember that if you are sick to call your primary care provider.  If you must go to the Emergency Room or Urgent Care – call ahead so they can prepare for your arrival.

Continue Social Distancing and daily hygiene practices:

·         Hand Hygiene. Washing hands with soap and water for 20 seconds OR use of hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

·         Stay 6 feet away from others

·         Disinfect high-touch surfaces

·         Avoid touching your face

·         Avoid contact with people who are sick

·         Stay home when sick

·         Avoid crowded places

·         Cancelling events / closure of public spaces

·         Encourage people to take care of themselves to take care of their immune systems.

o   Eat healthy – fruits & vegetables, whole grains, low fat meats, etc.

o   Get plenty of rest

o   Drink plenty of water

o   Stop smoking or abusing drugs and alcohol, seek appropriate help

o   Limit media time to help decrease stress

o   Keep in contact with older family members by phone, Face Time, cards and letters if you can’t visit in person

o   Take time for walks, play outside, do puzzles, help keep you children engaged with their studies

o   Start or continue a hobby

Vulnerable / Priority Populations

·         Older adults (65 years of age and older) and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions may be at higher risk for more serious complications from COVID-19.

·         Underlying medical conditions may include but are not limited to:

§  Chronic lung disease or asthma

§  Diabetes

§  Weakened immune system

§  Chemotherapy or radiation for cancer

·         People who are pregnant
If you are at higher risk of getting very sick from COVID-19, you should:

o   Stay home as much as possible. (Rely on help to get groceries / necessities such as prescriptions so you do not have to go out in public)  Talk with your healthcare provider about providing 90-day prescription orders and ask your pharmacist if you can re-fill early to limit trips out in public.

o   Take everyday precautions to keep space between yourself and others

o   Keep away from others who are sick

o   Wash your hands often

o   Avoid non-essential travel

o   Watch for symptoms and emergency signs. If you get sick, stay home and call your doctor.

 

·         CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory illnesses. A facemask should only be used by people who have COVID-19 and are showing symptoms. This is to protect others from the risk of getting infected.

·         Older patients and individuals who have severe underlying medical conditions or are immunocompromised should contact their healthcare provider early, even if their illness is mild. Symptoms for COVID19 are shortness of breath, dry cough and fever.

 

Get Information from Trusted Sources – New York State Department of Health, CDC and your local Health Department websites or social media platforms.

 

 

City of Batavia Suspends Overnight Parking Rules

News Release

Effective Sunday March 22, 2020 the enforcement of overnight parking regulations will be suspended until further notice. Overnight parking will be allowed to accommodate families and residents impacted by COVID-19.

We encourage residents who can still utilize their driveways for parking to do so, however we do not want to penalize families that might have extra vehicles at their residence at this time. Please continue to lock your vehicle and always remove valuables to prevent theft.

In the event of an emergency, or your vehicle is blocking work for the Department of Public Works (i.e. snowplowing, water main break, etc.), you will be asked to move the vehicle or it may be towed. All other parking regulations such as blocking a fire hydrant, parking in a fire lane or parking in a handicap zone will be strictly enforced.

Also effective Sunday March 22, 2020 City of Batavia Police Officers will not provide courtesy unlock of vehicles, unless there are exigent circumstances such as a child or pet locked inside.

Furthermore, on Sunday March 22, 2020 City of Batavia Police Officers will begin to take enhanced extra precautions when responding to calls for service.

Callers to dispatch will need to answer screening questions to better aid in appropriate response from emergency personnel. City of Batavia Police Officers and other emergency personnel may wear respirator masks, protective gloves, clear safety glasses and other personal protective equipment when answering calls.

These measures will ensure the safety of the community and first responders so that they can continue to serve residents in the best capacity possible. Anyone with signs or symptoms consistent with the CDC guidelines for Coronavirus should inform dispatchers, officers, and emergency personnel as soon as practicable. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html

If you have any questions about these measures please feel free to contact Police Chief Shawn Heubusch at sheubusch@batavianewyork.com.

Thank you for your continued support and cooperation as we all work together to keep Batavia safe.

National Fuel Offers HEAP Help

News Release

National Fuel recognizes that during these unsettling times there may be instances where customers find themselves facing financial difficulties. Customers whose income situations have changed in the last 30 days may be eligible for HEAP (Home Energy Assistance Program), a federally funded programs that provides financial heating assistance to those who qualify.

Customers who receive Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) grants are also automatically enrolled in the Statewide Low Income Program (SLIP), a program that provides monthly discounts on gas delivery charges. The discount amount is based on the amount of the HEAP grant they receive.

In addition to HEAP, other programs are available to help individuals who struggle to make their bill payments. National Fuel encourages customers to contact a customer service representative at 1-800-365-3234 weekdays from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. to discuss their personal situations. A quick call can provide information on the following programs:
• Neighbor for Neighbor Heat Fund is open year round and helps qualified customers who are aged 55 years or older, have a certified medical condition, are disabled, are a veteran, or are currently receiving unemployment benefits to prevent an energy emergency.
• Deferred Payment Agreement allows the potential to negotiate a repayment plan in the event of a problem or special circumstance.
• Special Protections is applicable for households where all residents are aged 62 years or older, 18 years or younger, blind or disabled.
• Budget plan billing is available for customers who want to have level, predictable monthly payments.

As always, if you smell gas, leave fast! If a rotten-egg natural gas odor is present, leave the premises immediately and call National Fuel’s emergency line, 1-800-444-3130, from a different location. If you smell gas outdoors, call National Fuel’s emergency number and provide the address nearest to the site of the odor.

National Fuel Gas Distribution Corporation is the Utility segment of National Fuel Gas Company, a diversified energy company that is engaged in a number of natural gas-related activities. The Utility provides natural gas service to more than 740,000 customers in Western New York and northwestern Pennsylvania. For more information, visit www.nationalfuel.com.

UNITED MEMORIAL MEDICAL CENTER TRAFFIC ALERT

Press Release:

Batavia, N.Y. – United Memorial Medical Center continues to take steps to further prepare to meet the needs of our community during this COVID-19 pandemic. This week, a series of tents will be installed outside the Emergency Department. With this, there will be changes in traffic patterns at the main 127 North Street campus.

Access to the hospital and offices via Summit Street will be restricted to ambulances only. All other hospital traffic will be directed to the main entrance or Chandler Avenue.

Our main entrance continues to provide access for patients and permitted visitors to the following departments:

• Inpatient Units
• Non-Invasive Cardiology
• Pediatric Cardiology Clinic
• Pre-Admission Testing
• Radiology
• Wound Care

Chandler Avenue will serve as the entrance for:

• Community Pharmacy
• Emergency Department
• Lipson Cancer Institute
• 33 Chandler Avenue
• 229 Summit Street
• 217 Summit Street
• 215 Summit Street
• 207 Summit Street
• 203 Summit Street

If you are driving in the area, please plan for potential delays and drive with caution.
We continue to advise patients that are sick and experiencing symptoms to contact their primary care provider first. For more information regarding COVID-19, visit rochesterregional.org/COVID19 or call 922-INFO.

Artistic Abilities Run in the Their Families

GAPA Logo Contest photo caption: (left to right) Brenda Lee Heineman, Norb Fuest, Megan Johnson, Blake Paserk, Steve Mahoney and Doug Russo.

Press Release:

Batavia, New York, March 23, 2020 – Blake Paserk, a junior from Batavia High School, and Megan Johnson, a junior from Oakfield-Alabama High School, are first-year students in the Graphic Arts Program at the Batavia Career and Technical Education (CTE) Center. When Doug Russo, the Graphic Arts Instructor at the Batavia CTE Center, shared with his class that the Genesee Area Personnel Association (GAPA) wanted to develop a new logo, both Megan and Blake jumped at this chance to use their creative talents.

“When Mr. Russo asked Blake and me to work on this project and enter the contest, that made us feel great that he had confidence in us and in our work,” Megan said.

Artistic abilities run in both Megan and Blake’s families. Blake’s mother is a photographer. He enrolled in the Graphic Arts Program because he wanted to learn more about how to use Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Creative Suite graphic design software used by photographers and graphic artists. Megan’s father owns a sign and promotional items company. Megan explained that her father uses graphic design software in his work and that she hopes to someday use the skills learned in the Graphics Arts Program to help in the family business.

This creative duo worked together for one week to design the GAPA logo and they came up with three different designs. The inspiration for the final design that was selected is a person with open arms; an idea that both students thought represented human resources.

“I think the graphic represents a welcoming concept,” Blake said. “We choose the pink and purple colors because the colors compliment each other but also contrast.”

Russo explained how this project all came to be.

“Norb Fuest contacted me to see if my students could design a logo for GAPA. My students worked in groups and we sent concepts to GAPA for their consideration. GAPA voted and chose Blake and Megan’s design,” Russo said.

Norb Fuest is the Treasurer for GAPA. He explained how this logo contest came to be. “This year notes the 50th anniversary of our organization. We thought this would be great time for us to develop a new logo and the idea was posed to ask these Graphic Arts student to submit their concepts,” Fuest said. “There were many quality logos that the students submitted and it was a difficult decision to narrow it down to one design.”

Megan and Blake’s design will be used in all GAPA materials. Fuest and Russo, as well as, two other GAPA members, Steve Mahoney and Brenda Lee Heineman, recently recognized Megan and Blake and presented them with a $250 honorarium for their efforts.

Novel Coronavirus Resources to Help Farms and Agricultural Businesses

Press Release:

Cornell Cooperative Extension of Wyoming County wants farmers and agribusiness owners to have access to the most recent information available regarding the Novel Coronavirus, COVID-19. The quickest way to get information about rules and policies being implemented to prevent the spread of the virus and recommendations for protecting your family, workforce and business is to access information on the internet as it becomes available. Below, please find a collection of trusted resources that are being updated regularly to help you make decisions and manage your farm or business effectively during the uncertain and rapidly changing times.

Our Agriculture Educator and Specialist Team are available to assist your farm business remotely. We continue to respond to questions from farmers and agribusinesses during these uncertain times. Please call Cornell Cooperative Extension of Wyoming County at 585-786-2251 and leave us a voice message or check our website: http://wyoming.cce.cornell.edu/ for our e-mail contact and drop us a note and we will reach out to respond to your question.

View the following Cornell CALS and CCE Resource Pages, which are updated regularly:
New York Disaster Education Network for general questions and links: https://eden.cce.cornell.edu/
Institute for Food Safety At Cornell University for Food Production, Processing & Safety Questions: https://instituteforfoodsafety.cornell.edu/coronavirus-covid-19/food-industry-resources/
Cornell Agricultural Workforce Development for Employment & Agricultural Workforce Questions: http://agworkforce.cals.cornell.edu/
Cornell Small Farms Program for Resiliency Resources: https://smallfarms.cornell.edu/resources/farm-resilience/
New York FarmNet for Financial & Mental Health Resources for Farmers: https://www.nyfarmnet.org/

View resources from US and NY government agencies:
USDA: https://www.usda.gov/coronavirus
FDA: https://www.fda.gov/food/food-safety-during-emergencies/food-safety-and-coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19
NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets: https://agriculture.ny.gov/coronavirus
New York Paid Sick Leave for COVID-19: https://www.governor.ny.gov/programs/paid-sick-leave-covid-19-impacted-new-yorkers

Additional resource to view for agricultural policy updates:
New York Farm Bureau: https://www.nyfb.org/news/covid-19-news
Multistate COVID-19 Policy Tracker: https://www.multistate.us/pages/covid-19-policy-tracker
State by State Tracker of COVID-19 Policies: https://associationdatabase.com/aws/OABA/pt/sd/news_article/286738/_PARENT/layout_details/false#state-regs

WCCHS COVID-19 Update

Press Release:

Warsaw, New York, March 23, 2020 – This morning, one of the two COVID-19 positive residents at the Wyoming County Community Health System (WCCHS) skilled nursing facility has died. The patient had been cared for in isolation since being tested.

From Joseph McTernan, CEO of WCCHS, “Our deepest condolences go out to the family of the resident. As we grieve, the safety of our residents, patients, staff and the community remains our focus.”

The following safety precautions have been put in place at the skilled nursing facility:

• All staff are screened including temperature prior to entering the facility
• Visitor restrictions remain in place
• All staff members continue to take aggressive infection control measures and are using personal protective equipment

New York State Department of Health epidemiology staff and Wyoming County Health Department staff continue to work with the WCCHS skilled nursing facility, providing guidance and instruction. The source of the infections has not been determined.

The following staff members of the WCCHS skilled nursing facility will answer any questions family members may have:

• Dawn James, Administrator (585) 786–8940, Ext. 4701
• Denise Prusak, Director of Nursing (585) 786–8940, Ext. 4703

From Dr. Gregory Collins, DO, MPH, Commissioner of the Wyoming County Health Department, “All Wyoming County residents should take steps to care for yourselves, your families, friends and neighbors. These are unprecedented times for public health and we need to keep each other safe.”

Morning News Briefing

The first coronavirus death has been confirmed in Wyoming County.
Health officials say the individual was one of two resident who were being treated in isolation at the Wyoming County Community Hospital’s Skilled Nursing Facility in Warsaw after testing positive for COVID-19.
The name and age of the person haven’t been released.
Officials say they’re working close with the Wyoming County Department of Health to ensure the safety of residents and staff at the facility.
All staff are screened, including for their temperature, prior to entering the facility while visitor restrictions remain in place.
The source of the infections has not yet been determined.

A second Monroe County resident has died as a result of the coronavirus.
The County Public Health Commissioner says the person won’t be identified due to privacy laws.
There are now over 80 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Monroe County. Twelve of those individuals are in the hospital and nearly 400 people are in mandatory quarantine.

Governor Cuomo is ordering hospitals across the state to increase their capacity of beds as the coronavirus crisis grows.
The number of confirmed cases in New York has now passed 20-thousand, which remains the highest total in the country.
Officials say more beds are necessary so the health care system isn’t overwhelmed as the number of people needing treatment grows.
Governor Cuomo says he’s also working on a plan to restart the state’s economy.

City Police bust a Medina man for stealing and possessing drug paraphernalia.
31 year old Douglas Taylor of Church Street Medina was arrested by Batavia PD Friday morning following an incident on East Main Street.
Taylor was ultimately charged with Petit Larceny and Possession of a Hypodermic Instrument and was released with appearance tickets for May 19th in City Court.

Batavia Police report the arrest of 18 year old Josie Panepinto of Ellicott Ave Batavia after investigation into a Maple Street incident in the City last Thursday.
Panepinto allegedly damaged another person’s property during a domestic incident and was charged with Criminal Mischief.
She is expected to reappear in Batavia City Court on May 19th.

City woman faces the music for blaring tunes to loud.
City Police took 36 year old Amanda McDonald of Ellsworth Ave into custody earlier this month on a count of Unreasonable Noise.
Police were called to the upper apartment over a complaint that McDonald had allegedly played excessively loud music at her residence which could be heard several houses away. She is expected in City Court on Mar. 31.

Genesee County Health Dept Issues Monday (Mar 23) Briefing

 

News Release Genesee Orleans County Health Departments

Health Department will issue daily briefings via News Release at 4PM daily unless there is Breaking News on the COVID-19 outbreak.

 

As of 2:00 p.m. today the lab-confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 have not changed in Genesee and Orleans Counties. We have the initial 1 confirmed case of COVID-19 identified in Genesee County and 1 confirmed case of COVID- 19 for Orleans County. Since the onset of testing, Genesee County has received 36 negative test results and Orleans, 34 negative test results for COVID-19.

Local contact tracing continues within our departments. The cases and stories are being built and documented. Regarding the special circumstances of the Orleans positive. Identified contacts have been notified and quarantined and swabbed as indicated. This patient became symptomatic out of state and is now in mandatory isolation at their residence in Orleans County. The patient was released from isolation from the state they were in, in line with that state’s clearance criteria. NYS clearance criteria are currently more restrictive and require negative COVID-19 results prior to being released. Swabbing through the Health Departments is warranted as part of our quarantine /isolation protocol for those who become symptomatic. We are not providing community testing at this time.

Genesee County: 7 people are under precautionary quarantine, 20 people are under mandatory quarantine, and 1 person (positive case) is under mandatory isolation.

Orleans County: 4 people are under precautionary quarantine, 10 people are under mandatory quarantine, and 1 person is under mandatory isolation (this is not a new positive case). As shared last week, the department continues to explore contacts related to the case and places any further contacts on mandatory quarantine as needed

Reminder: As discussed last week. We are placing folks on quarantine and isolation from the health department but individuals will also be asked by their provider to self- isolate if they have been swabbed until the results come back. This is very important. Number one the person is symptomatic, that’s why they’re being swabbed and secondly, we don’t want the person exposing others to illness (COVID-19 or otherwise). Please remain home if ill.

Young people may think this won’t affect them…they can get COVID-19, they can spread it to vulnerable populations and although not as likely, they can be hospitalized and possibly die from this disease, just as they can get the flu and have complications. Young people may also have underlying health issues they may not be aware of or if they smoke / vape, etc. they are putting themselves at higher risk of severe illness. This is why all people participate in social distancing even if they are not immune-compromised some people are going to react to this illness differently…it is not just the older folks, they do have the greater risk of dying or going to the hospital but people of any age can have severe illness. It is still important for all to help flatten the curve.

Swabbing / Partner Information

Remember that if you are sick to call your primary care provider. If you must go to the Emergency Room or Urgent Care – call ahead so they can prepare for your arrival.

COVID-19 swabbing/testing at the Health Departments and community is limited. If you feel you may have COVID-19, call your primary care provider or healthcare facility ahead of time. DO NOT GO DIRECTLY THERE, CALL AHEAD TO GET GUIDANCE. We will be screening and focusing on our at-risk populations – elderly and immune-compromised and those with underlying health issues. Primary care providers and some health systems are offering testing in both Monroe and Erie Counties. We’re still waiting on more public/private labs to sign-on soon along with swabbing kits.

Lab testing has been bogged down and sample results are coming back slowly. Again this is a source of frustration for the public and us. We continue to push these unacceptable issues back up to the state.

Due to the current limit of swabbing kits, guidelines are in place for primary care providers to order COVID-19 swabbing. We will notify how and who can be tested at testing sites once we have the capability to set them up.

We are working closely with the Healthcare Systems to determine capacity, healthcare systems are currently working on their plans to increase bed capacity to provide higher-level medical care as needed. We will update and provide additional information on these activities as they become available.

We are asking folks to follow the orders that are put out there. If you believe an employer is violating either existing labor laws or recently issued @NYGocCuomo executive orders, please contact the @NewYorkStateAG’s office at (212) 416-8700 or Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov. (On the Web)

Schools: Parents are encouraged to communicate with their child’s school to learn about how food or other services will be provided during this time. If it is a school-related issue, please contact the school, not the health departments.

Be alert to scams…there are no FDA-approved at-home test kits for COVID-19.

Please refer to the county web sites for current daily updates and guidance documents. Orleans County’s web site is still down, so we ask to visit the Genesee County website or follow GOHealthNY (user names) on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. We are also providing updates on the Genesee Ready and Orleans Aware apps.

Both County Buildings are closed to the public. Please call ahead to handle your business over the phone or by appointment.

Flu – for the week ending March 14: Orleans, 8 flu that week and 257 for the season; Genesee, 22 cases of flu and 588 for the season!

Mental Health in both counties are available in various capacities and the Care + Crisis

The helpline is available 24/7 at 585-283-5200 or text 741741 for anxiety and stress.

We are receiving back negative COVID-19 test results from the lab, but we are still having flu – more flu and other respiratory illness as we look at the data. Keep this in mind. Everyone should be social distancing and staying home.

Continue Social Distancing and daily hygiene practices:

Hand Hygiene. Washing hands with soap and water for 20 seconds OR use of hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
Stay 6 feet away from others
Disinfect high-touch surfaces
Avoid touching your face
Avoid contact with people who are sick
Stay home when sick
Avoid crowded places
Canceling events/closure of public spaces
Encourage people to take care of themselves to take care of their immune systems.
Eat healthy – fruits & vegetables, whole grains, low fat meats, etc. o Get plenty of rest
Drink plenty of water
Stop smoking or abusing drugs and alcohol, seek appropriate help o Limit media time to help decrease stress
Keep in contact with older family members by phone, Face Time, cards and letters if you can’t visit in person
Take time for walks, play outside, do puzzles, help keep you children engaged with their studies
Start or continue a hobby
Vulnerable / Priority Populations:

Older adults (65 years of age and older) and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions may be at higher risk for more serious complications from COVID-19.
Underlying medical conditions may include but are not limited to:  Chronic lung disease or asthma
Diabetes
Weakened immune system
Chemotherapy or radiation for cancer
People who are pregnant
If you are at higher risk of getting very sick from COVID-19, you should:

Stay home as much as possible. (Rely on help to get groceries/necessities such as prescriptions so you do not have to go out in public) Talk with your healthcare provider about providing 90-day prescription orders and ask your pharmacist if you can re-fill early to limit trips out in public.
Take everyday precautions to keep space between yourself and others
Keep away from others who are sick
Wash your hands often
Avoid non-essential travel
Watch for symptoms and emergency signs. If you get sick, stay home and call
your doctor.
According to the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report released March 18, the majority of fatalities were persons aged 85 and older (10%-27%); persons aged 65-84 3%-11%; 1%-3% among persons aged 55-64% and less than 1% for persons aged 20-54, and no fatalities among persons 19 or younger. Different people react differently to illness with and without underlying health issues and age factored in.

We can’t stress it enough

CDC does not recommend that people who are well wearing a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory illnesses. A facemask should only be used by people who have COVID-19 and are showing symptoms. This is to protect others from the risk of getting infected.
Older patients and individuals who have severe underlying medical conditions or are immuno-compromised should contact their healthcare provider early, even if their illness is mild. Symptoms for COVID19 are shortness of breath, dry cough, and fever.

New York State Cases / Restrictions / Guidance

As of March 23, 2020, there are 2,950 new positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the total to 15,168 in NYS.
At this time, roughly 18 percent of the people with COVID-19 in New York are hospitalized.
Monroe County: 57 confirmed cases in Monroe County.
Erie County: 54 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Erie County.
Wyoming County: 2 Confirmed COVID-19 cases
Niagara County: 6 Confirmed COVID-19 cases
Effective Saturday, March, 21st beginning at 8 p.m., all personal care services such as hair salons, barbershops, nail salons, and tattoo parlors in NYS will be mandated to close. These professions cannot conduct business while maintaining social distancing.
On Friday, March 20, 2020, Cuomo announced that he will sign an executive order mandating that 100% of the workforce must stay home (excluding essential services). This order excludes healthcare, pharmacies, grocery stores, etc.
Civil fines and mandatory closures for businesses that are not in compliance will be issued.
DOH Test Kits are NOT available. More information will be forthcoming when we receive notice.
PPE is in extremely short supply with no guidance as to when more will be supplied.
Gatherings with 50 people or more are not permitted for the next 8 weeks.

Genesee County Legislators Issue Letter to Residents

Dear Friends,

This is an unsettling time for our country and our community, as we are in a public health emergency due to the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Your elected leaders, public health and emergency management officials are working around the clock to slow the spread of the virus and provide care to those who need it. It is important to remember that we need to be prepared, not scared. Heed the advice of public health experts who agree that the most effective way to “flatten the curve,” or slow the spread of the virus, is to practice social distancing. Below is some helpful information regarding COVID-19:

How can you be infected?
• Coronavirus can spread from person to person through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Because these droplets can travel up to six feet, public health experts advise maintaining six feet of distance from others.
• The virus can also remain on a surface or object and enter the body through the mouth, nose, or eyes. This is why it is important to wash your hands before touching your face.
How long does it take to show symptoms after being infected?
• It takes 2 to 14 days to develop symptoms after exposure to the virus. The average is about 5 days.
What are the symptoms?
• Fever
• Dry cough
• Shortness of breath
When should you seek testing?
• If you are exhibiting symptoms
• If you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for the coronavirus
• If you have recently traveled to one of the high-risk countries

Except in the case of an emergency, please call your healthcare provider before seeking treatment in person.

While it is normal to feel anxious, there are ways to take control of the situation and be prepared. We urge you to take the following precautions to keep yourself and our community safe.
• Wash your hands often and for at least 20 seconds
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
• Avoid physical contact like handshakes and hugs
• Stay home if you feel sick
• Avoid large crowds
• Abstain from unnecessary travel

What is the difference between “Safer at Home” and “Social Distancing”?
Safer at home is a stricter form of social distancing. There are some differences. Safer at home means:
• Stay home (stay unexposed and do not expose others)
• Only go out for essential services
• Stay six feet or more away from others
• Don’t gather in groups

It is important during this national emergency that we unite as a community, follow the advice of experts, and take responsibility for our actions to #SlowTheSpread of coronavirus. For more information, visit coronavirus.health.ny.gov or call the NYS Novel Coronavirus Hotline at 1-888-364-3065.

Sincerely,

Rochelle M. Stein, Chair
Genesee County Legislature

 

On Behalf of the Genesee County Legislature
Marianne Clattenburg, Vice Chair, City of Batavia, Wards 2 & 3
Andrew Young, 2nd Vice Chair, Towns of Batavia & Stafford
John Hilchey, Towns of Alabama & Oakfield
Christian Yunker, Towns of Elba, Bergen, Byron
Gordon Dibble, Towns of Darien, Pembroke
Gregg Torrey, Towns of Alexander, Bethany, Pavilion
John Deleo, City of Batavia, Wards 1 & 6
Gary T. Maha, City of Batavia, Wards 4 & 5

Rochester Regional Health Temporarily Redirecting Lab Services

Press Release:

During this COVID-19 pandemic, we remain focused on the health of our community and continuing to deliver safe and accessible care for individuals who need it. Effective Monday, March 23 we are temporarily redirecting all lab draw services to the Rochester Regional Health Laboratory located at:

 

Rochester Regional Health Laboratory
City Center
106 Main Street, Suite 47B
Batavia, NY 14020

Our Batavia (16 Bank Street), LeRoy (3 Tountas Avenue), and Pembroke (860 Main Street) laboratory service centers are closed until further notice. We appreciate your understanding.

Morning News Briefing

Gov. Andrew Cuomo

Governor Cuomo has signed an executive order called “New York State on PAUSE,” that is now in effect statewide aimed at preventing the spread of coronavirus.
A majority of businesses are required to keep their entire workforce home under the order and places that remain open must ensure customers are several feet apart.
Businesses caught defying the order can face a fine and mandatory closure.
Gatherings like parties or other social events are also canceled while sick people are being urged only to leave their homes if absolutely necessary.

As New York State deals with over 15-thousand confirmed coronavirus cases the federal government is sending in some help.
Yesterday, President Trump approved a request to declare New York a major disaster area, making it easier for the state to receive more help with recovery efforts.
Trump said much needed medical supplies are heading to New York.
The Empire State has the highest number of coronavirus cases in the country currently and has been dubbed the epicenter of the pandemic.

There is still only one person in mandatory isolation with a positive case of COVID-19 in Genesee County according to the latest from the Genesee & Orleans County Health Department.
19 people are under mandatory quarantine and 8 are under precautionary quarantine.
There remains only one person with a positive case from Orleans County as well, however they remain in mandatory isolation out of state.
9 people are under mandatory quarantine with 4 under precautionary quarantine also in Orleans County.

The Wyoming County Community Health System received notice this morning that two residents of the Skilled Nursing Facility have tested positive for COVID-19 according to the New York State Department of Health.
Since being tested, the residents have been treated in isolation and contact tracing is in process for residents and staff.
Screenings are now being conducted for all skilled nursing facility staff reporting for work prior to entering the facility.
All staff are taking aggressive infection control measures and are using personal protective equipment.

WBTA will again be dedicating the entire hour of “Main & Center” for a second installment of “COVID-19, a Local View”.
Dan Ireland, President of UMMC and representatives from the County’s Emergency Management Office will be in studio to answer phoned-in questions from the listeners.
The program begins at 9 this morning after the national news report.

Genesee Country Village & Museum to Cancel All Maple Events

Press Release:

Genesee Country Village & Museum is cancelling both weekends of our Maple Sugar Festival and Pancake Breakfast (March 21-22 and March 28-29) and the Maple Soiree (April 4) in response to the ever-changing impact of COVID-19.

The Museum is continuing to closely monitor evolving guidance and conditions. Other programs beyond these two have not been cancelled at this time, although we continue to assess that daily since the safety of our visitors, staff, and vendors is paramount.

For those who have purchased tickets for the Festival, Breakfast, or Soiree, you have three options for the amount that you paid:

• Receive a credit that can be used towards any 2020 Museum program, general admission, or membership
• Make a tax-deductible donation to the Museum
• Receive a refund

While we understand that some may want a refund for their tickets, we hope that you will consider one of the first two options. GCV&M is a non-profit organization and issuing extensive refunds will increase the extraordinary financial pressure that we are under and impact our ability to support our staff and future programs. Please contact the Program Registrar at ProgramRegistrar@gcv.org or 585-294-8218 for more information.

We have collaborated with colleagues at other Rochester-area cultural institutions and are all taking similar measures to support our members, volunteers, staff, visitors, and greater community.

GCV&M is not open to the public on a daily basis in March or April and updates regarding any other Museum events and programs will be posted to a dedicated web page: https://www.gcv.org/visit/covid-19-information/

Thank you for your continued support of GCV&M. Should you have any questions or comments, please contact us at ProgramRegistrar@gcv.org or 585-294-8218. We look forward to welcoming you back soon.

Becky Wehle
President & CEO

Genesee County Master Gardener Update

Press Release:

BATAVIA – This is a challenging time for everyone. In light of the rapidly changing COVID-19 situation and to ensure the health and safety of our volunteers, staff and participants, all Genesee County Master Gardener programs and speaking engagements have been cancelled through April. If you have registered and paid for any of our programs you will get a refund. We will resume our regular programming as soon as we can.

Given the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 and to do our part to help limit the spread, the Master Gardener Helpline will not be available to walk-ins through May 1. Master Gardener volunteers will not be in the office during this time. We hope to reopen to the public on Monday, May 4.

With gardening season at our doorstep, we want to be available to help you. If you have gardening questions you may continue to contact us through our email at geneseemg@hotmail.com. Photos may be sent for plant and insect identification. If you are on Facebook you can also leave a question on the CCE Genesee Facebook page.

Stay up to date with our Master Gardener program by visiting our website at genesee.cce.cornell.edu.

Please take all precautions to stay safe and healthy.

Thank you for your continued support and we hope to see you in the near future.

Weekend News Briefing

One more person has been placed under mandatory quarantine in Genesee County bringing the total to 16 people.
According to Genesee & Orleans County Health Department Director Paul Petit who spoke at the public health briefing Friday evening there is still only one confirmed case in Genesee County and they remain in isolation.
Nearly 40% of those in mandatory quarantine in both Genesee and Orleans counties, are symptomatic however the health department is still awaiting results for those patients.
Private providers are continuing to perform COVID-19 tests on patients who are symptomatic but it can take up to five days to get results back and they are under doctor’s orders to self-quarantine.
There is still a shortage of test kits locally and the flu is still prevalent in the region.
According to the Health Department it’s more likely if you’re symptomatic now, you don’t have COVID-19 but you have the flu.
The same protocol of social isolation applies as much for people with the flu to help prevent spread.
Also during the briefing UMMC President Dan Ireland said as a precautionary measure the hospital will start erecting tents however there are still plenty of beds available in the hospital.

Governor Andrew Cuomo announced he is signing the “New York State on PAUSE” executive order, a 10-point policy to assure uniform safety for everyone.
It includes a new directive that all non-essential businesses statewide must close in-office personnel functions effective at 8PM on Sunday, March 22, and temporarily bans all non-essential gatherings of individuals of any size for any reason.
Governor Cuomo also announced “Matilda’s Law” – named for the Governor’s mother – to protect New York’s most vulnerable populations, including individuals age 70 and older, those with compromised immune systems and those with underlying illnesses.
The measure requires this group of New Yorkers to stay home and limit home visitation to immediate family members or close friends in need of emergency assistance.
The Governor also announced a 90-day moratorium on any residential or commercial evictions.

Two dogs perish is a State Street fire in Batavia.
City Fire crews were dispatched to a reported residential fire at 236 State Street at around quarter after 12 Friday afternoon.
The first firefighters on scene reported a working kitchen fire in the rear of the home and responding crews were able to contain the kitchen area within about 15 minutes.
There was extensive heat and smoke damage throughout the residence due to the intensity of the fire and two dogs perished inside of the home.
Investigation is on-going to determine the cause of the blaze however the fire does not appear to be incendiary in nature.

The Thruway Authority has announced emergency toll procedures will be in place effective Sunday, March 22 at approximately 8 p.m., at cash toll lanes on the Thruway’s ticketed-system.
This plan will convert the collection of cash tolls to toll billing by the license plate during the Novel Coronavirus response in New York State.
The procedures will be in place until further notice.
When non-E-ZPass customers enter the Thruway in a cash lane, they will continue through the lane without collecting a ticket, then when exiting the Thruway, they will inform the toll collector which exit they entered the Thruway and provide them their license plate information, without paying cash.
Motorists will then be sent a bill in the mail in approximately 30 days and can pay with a credit card through the Thruway Authority’s website.

City Fire Responds to Several Calls on Friday

 

News Release

The City of Batavia Fire Department responded to separate reported fires today.

This first was dispatched at 10:08 am for reported smoke coming from a window at Batavia Gardens, 679 East Main Street.
Upon arrival responding crews found a grease fire located on a stove that was contained to a pan.
The damaged was confined to the stove top and the residence was ventilated to remove the smoke condition.
Occupants of the residence were evaluated at the scene by Mercy EMS personnel and a member of the Byron fire Department who was working at the location.

At 12:17 pm City Fire Department was then dispatched to a reported residential fire at located at 236 State Street. First arriving fire units were on-scene at 12:21 pm and upon arrival, firefighters working kitchen fire in the rear portion of the home. Responding crews made entrance into the residence from a side door and attacked the fire. Firefighters were able to confine and contain the kitchen area and the situation was called under control by command at 12:34 pm and all units were back in service at 2:33 pm.
While the fire was contained to the kitchen area of the home, there was extensive heat and smoke damage throughout the residence due to the intensity of the fire and two dogs perished inside of the home.

At this time the City of Batavia’s Fire Investigation team is investigating the fire to determine the origin and cause. Presently, the fire does not appear to be incendiary in nature. Once a determination has been made, we will be providing an additional media release with further information.
City Fire was assisted at the scene by the City of Batavia Police and Code Departments with additional support provided by Genesee County Emergency Dispatch and Office of Emergency Services.

Additionally, The Town of Batavia Fire Department assisted City Fire with responding to the New York State School for the Blind for a fire alarm activation during the State Street incident.

THRUWAY AUTHORITY TO IMPLEMENT EMERGENCY TOLL PROCEDURES DUE TO COVID-19

News Release

The Thruway Authority today announced emergency toll procedures will be in place effective Sunday, March 22 at approximately 8 p.m., at cash toll lanes on the Thruway’s ticketed-system. This plan will convert the collection of cash tolls to toll billing by the license plate during the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) response in New York State. The procedures will be in place until further notice.

“We are implementing these emergency toll procedures for the health and safety of our employees and motorists,” Thruway Authority Executive Director Matthew J. Driscoll said. “We need the next 48 hours to take necessary operational steps to implement the procedures effectively and seamlessly. In the meantime, we continue to enhance safety measures to protect toll collectors and motorists. We thank the toll collection staff and all of our workforce for their dedication during this public health crisis.”

Effective Sunday, March 22 at approximately 8 p.m., when non-E-ZPass customers enter the Thruway in a cash lane, they will continue through the lane without collecting a ticket. When the customer exits the Thruway, they will inform the toll collector which exit they entered the Thruway and provide the toll collector their license plate information, without paying cash to the toll collector. Customers without an E-ZPass should not enter an E-ZPass lane, as they will receive an E-ZPass violation.

Motorists will then be sent a bill in the mail in approximately 30 days. Toll bills will be sent to the registered owner of the vehicle at the address on file with the Department of Motor Vehicles. Once they receive a bill in the mail, customers can pay with a credit card through the Thruway Authority’s website.

E-ZPass customers should travel through E-ZPass lanes and be billed as they normally would. E-ZPass customers who travel through a cash lane will be given a green light to pass through by the toll collector.
Motorists who wish to save time and bypass the emergency toll procedures can sign up for E-ZPass online.

Maple Weekend Announcement

Press Release:

Out of an abundance of caution, the New York State Maple Producers Association has decided to cancel the 2020 NYS Maple Weekend. This 25th anniversary festival was scheduled for March 21-22 and March 28-29 at 187 different locations across NYS. Individual sugarhouses will continue to produce, stock and market their excellent crop of Maple Products. Please contact them directly to order your favorite maple products. NYS Maple Producers Association is already preparing for an alternative series of open houses later in the year to showcase both producer and product. Consult MapleWeekend.com for future events. If you have questions, contact us at mapleweekend@nysmaple.com

Holland Land Office Museum COVID-19 Notice

Press Release:

We at the Holland Land Office Museum have been watching the current circumstances regarding the COVID-19 outbreak. Though we had originally planned to stay open, with the recent updates to the situation within our local community, the Board of Directors and I have decided to close the museum to the public for the recommended two week period until April 1st. This closure is in addition to canceling and rescheduling the remainder of events scheduled for the remainder of March. We will be continually evaluating the situation as April approaches and will keep everyone updated if we decide to cancel or reschedule further events. Any updates to our situation will be communicated through our website, Facebook page, and email. Should you have any questions please feel free to contact the museum by phone at 585-343-4727 or by email at hollandlandoffice@gmail.com.

Thank you for your support and understanding of this decision. We hope for everyone to stay safe and healthy.

Sincerely,

Ryan Duffy
Executive Director

Village of LeRoy declares State of Emergency

Press Release:

Greg Rogers, Village of LeRoy Mayor declared a State of Emergency at on March 19, 2020 and issued an Emergency Order effective March 19, 2020 beginning at 1:00 pm.

Village of LeRoy Office and DPW Garage are closed to the public effective March 19, 2020 for five (5) days unless rescinded earlier or renewed in five (5) day increments.

The Village will conduct business with the public remotely through the use of phones, computers, mail, or other means.

Village Clerk-Treasurer sjeary@villageofleroy.org
Sewer bills will be received by mail, and may be dropped off in the drop box located on the west side of Village Hall. They will be processed during regular business hours. You may email the Clerk-Treasurer to inquire about other services.
Phone number (585)768-2527, extension 2216

Morning News Briefing

More people are now under mandatory quarantine with still only one confirmed case of COVID 19 virus in Genesee County.
The latest numbers for both Genesee and Orleans counties were released by the Genesee-Orleans Health Department late yesterday afternoon.
Paul Pettit is director of the two county Health Department…

According to Petitt a number of the 15 people under mandatory quarantine in Genesee County are showing symptoms and have been tested, however the test results have not yet returned from the lab.
Orleans County now has one confirmed case of COVID 19.
The patient is a county resident who had no symptoms while at home but then traveled out of state, became ill, and has now been placed in mandatory isolation and is not allowed to return home.

More Monroe County residents are being treated for the coronavirus.
Officials say there are now 30 positive cases and the individuals range in age from people in their 20s to older folks in their 80s.
Eight of the cases have required hospitalization and one person died earlier this week.
Anyone with questions is urged to call the Monroe County Health Department’s Coronavirus Hotline at 585-753-5555.

The Village of LeRoy declares a State of Emergency.
Greg Rogers, Village of LeRoy Mayor declared a State of Emergency and issued an Emergency Order effective yesterday afternoon closing Village offices and the DPW Garage for 5 days.
The Mayor can continue the emergency order in additional 5 day increments while the Village will continue to conduct business with the public remotely via phones, computers, mail, or other means.

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases is continuing to increase dramatically in New York State.
Health officials say over four-thousand people have been infected while the death toll is also rising.
Governor Cuomo continues to say New Yorkers shouldn’t panic since the growing numbers are mostly connected to more people being tested.
To try and slow the spread of the virus, he’s also requiring non-essential businesses to only have 25-percent of their employees report to work.

A High Wind Warning for area’s including Niagara, Orleans, Genesee, and Wyoming counties is going in effect from 10 a.m. this morning until 5 p.m. this afternoon.
The National Weather Service is predicting Southwest winds from 25 to 35 mph with gusts of up to 60.
Forecasters expect damaging winds will blow down some trees and power lines and may lead to scattered power outages.
They also warn that travel will be difficult, especially for high profile vehicles.

Some New York State homeowners being hit hard by the coronavirus crisis are about to get a bit of relief.
Governor Cuomo says they’ll get a 90-day break from paying their mortgages.
Just who qualifies will depend on an individual’s financial situation.
Homeowners will still have to make the payments eventually, since they’ll be added to the end of their current mortgage.

Latest Local COVID-19 Update

There remains just one confirmed case of COVID 19 virus in Genesee County, although more people are under mandatory quarantine.
The Genesee-Orleans Health Department released the latest numbers for both counties late this afternoon.
The director of the Health Departments is Paul Pettit

Petitt said that of the 15 people under mandatory quarantine in Genesee County. Some of these people have symptoms and have been tested. The test results are not yet available.
Orleans County has recorded its first confirmed case of COVID 19.
The patient is a county resident but had no symptoms while at home. The patient then traveled out of state, became ill, and has now been placed in mandatory isolation and not allowed to return home.

Celebrate Agriculture Dinner Postponed

News Release

The 18TH Annual Celebrate Agriculture Dinner originally scheduled for April 18 has been postponed indefinitely.
The dinner is a joint effort of the Genesee County Chamber of Commerce, the Genesee County Farm Bureau, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Genesee County and Genesee County Soil and Water.
It is hoped that the dinner, which is held at the Alexander Fire Hall and annually draws over 300 people, can be rescheduled at a later date.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection suspend operations at Trusted Traveler Program enrollment centers

Press Release:

Operations suspended to help prevent spread of novel coronavirus

WASHINGTON — U.S. Customs and Border Protection will temporarily suspend operations at Trusted Traveler Program enrollment centers nationwide from March 19 until at least May 1, 2020. CBP is taking this precautionary measure to minimize the exposure of CBP personnel and the public to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

This temporary closure includes all public access Global Entry enrollment centers, NEXUS enrollment centers, SENTRI enrollment centers and FAST enrollment locations. Global Entry mobile enrollment events are also paused until further notice.

Conditionally-approved applicants who seek an enrollment center interview will need to reschedule after May 1. These applicants are encouraged to monitor their e-mail and Trusted Traveler Program accounts for further information. CBP will continue to monitor the situation in order to resume enrollment centers interviews as soon as possible.

CBP’s Enrollment on Arrival program will remain operational. Conditionally-approved Global Entry applicants will be able to complete the enrollment process when arriving on an international flight at any of the 60 airports that offer this program.

CBP’s highest priority is to ensure the health, safety and security of our workforce and the American people. CBP agents, officers and mission support personnel will continue to support the whole-of-government response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Town of LeRoy: Covid-19 Declaration

Press Release:

Town of LeRoy Covid-19 Declaration

A State of Emergency is hereby declared in the Town of LeRoy, effective 12:00 p.m. March 19th 2020.

 

Social Security Update on Services During COVID – 19 Pandemic

Press Release:

From Andrew Saul, Commissioner of Social Security

“I want you to hear directly from me how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting our services. The first thing you should know is that we continue to pay benefits. Be aware that scammers may try to trick you into thinking the pandemic is stopping your Social Security payments but that is not true. Don’t be fooled.

To protect you and help stop the spread of this coronavirus, we cannot accept visitors in our offices at this time. There are several other ways you can get help. Many services are available online at www.socialsecurity.gov. If you have a critical need that you cannot address online, we can help you over the phone.

Please visit our COVID-19 web page at www.socialsecurity.gov/coronavirus/ to find out what services we are continuing and which ones we are suspending, how to contact us, and important information about deadlines we are extending to ease the burden on you and medical providers during this pandemic.”

 

 

HUD PROVIDES IMMEDIATE RELIEF FOR HOMEOWNERS AMID NATIONWIDE CORONAVIRUS RESPONSE

Press Release:

WASHINGTON – U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson, in consultation with the Trump Administration and the Coronavirus Task Force, today authorized the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) to implement an immediate foreclosure and eviction moratorium for single family homeowners with FHA-insured mortgages for the next 60 days. These moratoriums are part of the continued effort by President Trump to address impacts to the financial well-being of America’s individuals, families, and businesses caused by Coronavirus (COVID-19).

“Today’s actions will allow households who have an FHA-insured mortgage to meet the challenges of COVID-19 without fear of losing their homes, and help steady market concerns,” said HUD Secretary Ben Carson. “The health and safety of the American people is of the utmost importance to the Department, and the halting of all foreclosure actions and evictions for the next 60 days will provide homeowners with some peace of mind during these trying times.”

The guidance issued today applies to homeowners with FHA-insured Title II Single Family forward and Home Equity Conversion (reverse) mortgages, and directs mortgage servicers to:

• Halt all new foreclosure actions and suspend all foreclosure actions currently in process; and
• Cease all evictions of persons from FHA-insured single-family properties.

“This is an uncertain time for many Americans, particularly those who could experience a loss of income. As such, we want to provide FHA borrower households with some immediate relief given the current circumstances,” said Federal Housing Commissioner Brian Montgomery. “Our actions today make it clear where the priority needs to be.”

FHA continues to encourage servicers to offer its suite of loss mitigation options to distressed borrowers – including those that could be impacted by the Coronavirus – to help prevent them from going into foreclosure. These include short and long-term forbearance options, mortgage modifications, and other mortgage payment relief options available based on the borrower’s individual circumstances.

“The Trump administration is taking unprecedented steps in addressing COVID-19. No family should fear losing their home in this crisis, and the immediate action that HUD is taking will go a long way in securing our most vulnerable Americans,” said Lynne Patton, HUD Regional Director for New York and New Jersey. “Residents of the Garden State and the Empire State should know that HUD is with them during this uncertain time.

CITY OF BATAVIA MARCH 23RD COUNCIL MEETING CANCELLED

Press Release:

BATAVIA, NEW YORK- The City of Batavia will be cancelling the following meetings.

Monday March 23rd City Council Meeting – cancelled

Thursday March 26th Zoning Board of Appeals – cancelled

March 26th Zoning Board of Appeals – cancelled

Tuesday April 21st Planning and Development Committee – cancelled

April 23rd Zoning Board of Appeals – cancelled

As a reminder City Hall and City buildings are closed to the public until further notice.

CITY OF BATAVIA BUREAU OF INSPECTIONS WILL CONTINUE TO ISSUE PERMITS

Press Release:

BATAVIA, NEW YORK- The City of Batavia Bureau of Inspection is currently closed to the public. Permits may be submitted through the following methods:

• Email – mchilano@batavianewyork.com
• Fax – 585-345-1385

Applicants will be notified when the permit has been issued, at which time, payment can be made by the following methods:

• Check sent by mail to Bureau of Inspection, One Batavia City Ctr.
• Dropbox on the wall outside the doors of City Hall
• Personal internet banking
• Credit card over the phone (fee will be applied)

Applicants must call in advance for required inspections. Application is available on the City’s website https://www.batavianewyork.com/public-works-bureau-of-inspection/pages/downloadable-forms

For questions, please call the Bureau of Inspection at 585-345-6345

Morning News Briefing

Gov. Andrew Cuomo

Employers are now going to be required to reduce their in-person workforce by 50 percent according to a new executive order signed by Governor Cuomo.
The thought is that it’ll reduce the spread of the COVID-19 virus with less people on the job.
Health care workers, employees of grocery stores, pharmacies, banks or even the news media, are exempt from the new restrictions along with a few other professions.
According to Cuomo he knows his decision will negatively impact the economy.
The governor says he hopes to lift the mandate it as soon as possible after it goes into effect tomorrow.

New York’s number of confirmed coronavirus cases continues to climb with no sign of slowing down.
More than two-thousand New Yorker’s are now being treated for the disease.
Indoor portions of malls, bowling alleys and indoor amusement parks must close by 8 p.m. tonight in an effort to encourage people to stay home.
There’s no word on how long the new restriction will be in place.

Monroe County is reporting more confirmed cases of the coronavirus
22 people have been infected, and several of them are now hospitalized according to health officials.
People are also being asked to monitor themselves for symptoms if they were at the Greater Rochester International Airport between 5:45 p.m. and 6:45 p.m. Saturday night.
That’s around the time a passenger arrived to Rochester on a Delta flight from JFK Airport in New York City who later tested positive for coronavirus.
If you have any questions about your health, contact your doctor before deciding to head to the hospital.

The City of Batavia has cancelled a number of meetings scheduled for the upcoming week including the City Council meeting on March 23rd.
All of the City Offices remain closed to the public until further notice however those still needing to do essential business with any of the City departments including Batavia’s Bureau of Inspection are encouraged to contact officials by phone, email or mail and to utilize electronic payment systems or the drop box in front of City Hall for making payments.
There is contact information and new guidelines provided by our local agencies on the local news page of our website.

Governor Cuomo has signed off on legislation that will help workers affected by the coronavirus.
The measure was approved in the Senate and Assembly yesterday and will guarantee at least two weeks of paid leave and protect the jobs of all private sector employees. Public employees who work for companies that employ 100 or more people get the same coverage.
All employees of smaller companies will receive job protection and have access to disability and family leave benefits while some will also get paid sick days.

President Trump and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau have agreed to temporarily close the border between the United States and Canada to nonessential traffic. The leaders of both countries say the move is being made to help contain the spread of the coronavirus. President Trump said yesterday the border will likely be closed for at least 30 days. The only individuals that will be allowed to cross the border include truck drivers or people on official government business.

If you travel on the Thruway during the overnight hours, you could run into delays.
The installation of cashless tollbooths will require traffic to be stopped at times between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. through tomorrow morning.
Tonight, gantries are going to be installed between exits 48A and 50.
Cashless tolling is expected to be available to all drivers by the end of the year.

Rochester Regional Health is Restricting Visitors until Further Notice

Press Release:

Batavia, N.Y. – Consistent with Governor Cuomo’s directive for long-term care facilities, Rochester Regional Health has implemented enhanced visitor restrictions to further protect our patients, our team members, and our community.

United Memorial Medical Center is restricting all visitors until further notice.

Limited visitation will be allowed for the following patients only:
• Pediatric patients may have two designated guardians on site at a time.
• End-of-life patients may have one on-site visitor at a time.
• Obstetrical patients may have one on-site visitor at a time.

Visitors and guardians must be symptom-free (no coughing, no fever, no runny nose) and must not have knowingly been exposed to an individual with COVID-19 within the past 14 days.

Genesee County Clerk Michael Cianfrini Addresses Coronavirus Impact On Clerk and DMV Offices

Press Release:

Due to the risks associated with the novel coronavirus, and after consultation with relevant health professionals, the County Clerk’s Recording Office will be closed to the public effective Wednesday, March 18th, 2020. We will unfortunately not be able to process pistol permit amendments, passport applications, DBA filings or in-office real estate recordings. All users are strongly encouraged to use the eFiling, eRecording and online search capabilities that our office offers. Please be advised that the office will maintain minimal staff in the office to process mail transactions and electronically submitted transactions. For any paper filings or searches that are not time sensitive, please hold off on filing or recording until this necessary restriction can be lifted.

Please visit our website at https://www.co.genesee.ny.us/departments/countyclerk/index.php for information on obtaining a subscription to access our records online. Civil filings can continue to be submitted through the NYSCEF eFiling system. Real estate documents and other recordings can still be submitted electronically through either Simplifile or CSC.

In addition, the Genesee County DMV will also be closed to the public effective Wednesday, March 18th, 2020. While we will not be open to the public, the office will continue to process certain transactions submitted either through the drop box or U.S. Mail. For registration renewals, please sign the back of the registration invite and make your check or money order payable to the “Genesee County Clerk”.

Driver’s License renewals can be submitted via mail and will require the following:
– An eye test report (MV-619) or you may visit any Vision Registry Location and the results will be electronically forwarded to the DMV.
– Enclose the paper invitation sent to you in the mail, or you may obtain a form MV-44 on the MY DMV website. Make the check or money order payable to the “Genesee County Clerk.”

License plate surrenders can be dropped off with $1.00 cash and a written address to return the receipt to.

A clear and complete copy of a CDL Medical Examiners Certificate may also be deposited in the drop box with a valid phone number on the back. We will fax the certificate and notify you when it is processed in the DMV system (takes approximately 2 weeks).

We also remind everyone that during this period the public can utilize the DMV services available online to complete many DMV transactions.

As County Clerk, I recognize the inconvenience that these restrictions place on the public, but please understand that the interests of public health and the health of the County Clerk staff are of utmost concern. It is our sincere hope that these measures can be lifted as soon as the public health officials deem prudent.

CITY OF BATAVIA FIRE DEPARTMENT RESPONSE TO COVID-19

Press Release:

In light of the current pandemic, the City of Batavia Fire Department has embraced the advice of the Genesee County Health Department and implemented a number of significant changes to our operational model and service delivery. It is our intent and a concerted effort to assist in reducing the spread of the COVID-19 virus (coronavirus).

Our service to the public remains our main mission. We are here to serve you and we must bring about these changes to ensure that we are able to continue to provide the highest levels of service during this most unsettling time.

As a result, the City of Batavia Fire Department has put into action the following safeguards effective immediately;

– First and foremost, if you have an emergency call 911 immediately and the fire department will be dispatched to you as normal.

– Fire Headquarters located at 18 Evans Street will be locked and secured at all times. Anyone requesting assistance or information can utilize the phone located in the front vestibule of the station which will contact a member of our staff who will be able to assist you.

– All outside activities hosted at the firehouse have been cancelled, as well as many of our internal programs.
– We have adopted a revised EMS response model in an effort to protect our staff and our community. We continue to respond to all medical emergencies, however, the appearance along with patient contact of our staffing will be modified.

– Firefighter’s will be practicing “social distancing” techniques as instructed by the County’s Health Department. Please understand that this is for your protection as well as that of fire department staffing.

– Our community risk reduction programs, including car seat inspection and installations, commercial building inspections, EMT and CPR classes along with fire prevention and education have been
suspended until further notice. However, this does not include our smoke detector installation and inspection program. Please call 585-345-6375 to schedule an appointment for fire department staffing to inspect, install or change batteries as normal.

– If you are in need of a copy of a fire report please call 585-345-6375 before responding to the Station, you will be given directions on how to proceed with your request at that time.

– If you would like to speak with a Fire Officer or the Fire Chief, we ask that you call 585-345-6375. Fire department staff will forward your call to the appropriate person. In the event that they are unable to assist you immediately, staff will obtain your information and someone will be in contact with you as soon as possible.

You, the public can help by following the recommendations of maintaining social distancing of 6′ or more between other people, frequently washing your hands, and self-monitoring for cold or flu like symptoms such as fever, cough or upper respiratory infections. If you do have these symptoms, please tell your medical providers right away so they can assist you in the best ways possible. We ask that you consult the Genesee County Public Health Department website for additional information about the COVID-19 virus.

Lastly, these procedures have been implemented to ensure that we can adequately respond to emergencies and to help safeguard both the public and firefighters from accidental exposure to the virus.

As we move forward over the next several days and weeks, we value your patience and understanding as we work through these difficult days together. The Fire Officers and firefighters of the City of Batavia Fire Department will continue to deliver aid and assistance in any way possible to ensure that our community remains safe at all times.

Batavia CTE Student is a Creative Artist with Many Talents

(left to right) Joe Hussar, Batavia HS Counselor; Catherine Bennett, Batavia CTE Center Assistant Principal; Matt Wolff, AWS Rochester Section Chairman; Tyler Murphy; Paul Kesler, Batavia HS Principal; Andrew Geyer and Tim Gleba, Precision Machining Instructor.

Press Release:

Batavia, New York, March 17, 2020 – When Tyler Murphy heard about a logo contest offered by the Rochester chapter of the American Welding Society, he thought he would create a design that reflects his style but also create something that reflects the work of the American Welding Society (AWS), a national organization with local and regional chapters, that promotes and encourages the welding trade. Tyler, a senior from Batavia High School, is a Welding student at the Batavia Career and Technical Education (CTE) Center. His inspiration for his drawing is his love of tattoos, and he wanted to incorporate something that portrayed America, hence the use of the American eagle.

Tyler is quick to share that his teacher encouraged him to enter the contest. “Mr. Geyer, my Welding teacher, encouraged me to enter the contest. He knows how much I enjoy drawing,” Tyler said.

Andrew Geyer is the Welding Instructor at the Batavia CTE Center. He explains why he shared contest information with Tyler.

“When I learned about the American Welding Society logo design competition and how the organization wanted students to submit artwork, Tyler came to mind right away. Tyler has a desire and ability to create art with metal and other mediums. Tyler’s drawing for the new AWS t-shirt logo showcases his ability but represents all types of talent here at the Batavia CTE Center,” Geyer said. “The Metal Trades not only promotes the welding industry but advocates for student’s success and achievement by cultivating student’s confidence and ability through projects such as a logo design competition. I’m extremely proud of Tyler and the efforts he has demonstrated.”

Tyler’s design was selected as the first-place winner of this AWS logo contest and his efforts were recently recognized by Geyer, Paul Kesler, Batavia HS Principal; Joe Hussar, Batavia HS counselor; Catherine Bennett, Batavia CTE Center Assistant Principal; and Matt Wolff, AWS Rochester Section Chairman.

“The AWS Rochester board voted on all designs submitted from local area schools, and Tyler Murphy is the winner. The American Welding Society Rochester Section presented Tyler with a $500 award for a new t-shirt design,” Wolff said.

Tyler was surprised by this award and when asked how he will use the $500, he replied, “I’m ecstatic that my design was chosen. I’m going to buy welding tools.”

The mission of the America Welding Society is to advance the science, technology and application of welding and allied joining and cutting processes, including brazing, soldering and thermal spraying. With many local and region chapters, this national nonprofit organization, strives to advance the welding industry through many initiatives including membership, certification, education and research as well as publications and events.

Genesee County Board of Elections will be closed to the public

Press Release:

From: Genesee Co. Board of Elections
Contact: Dick Siebert and Lorie Longhany

Beginning Thursday the Genesee County Board of Elections will be closed to the public due to the COVID-19 pandemic for the safety of the voting public. Voter registration forms for registering to vote or for any of the following; change of address, name change, party enrollment changes, as well as absentee ballot applications can all be accessed on our website at www.co.genesee.ny.us , by email at election@co.genesee.ny.us or by phone at (585)815-7804 during regular business hours. These forms can either be mailed back to us at Genesee County Board of Elections, 15 Main St., Batavia, NY 14020 or placed in the DMV drop box on Court St. at County Building One.

Morning News Briefing

One resident in Genesee County has tested positive for COVID-19 also known as novel coronavirus according to the director of Genesee and Orleans Counties Health Departments Paul Pettit.
The individual who was confirmed through testing at the Erie County Health Lab yesterday afternoon is said to be over 65 years old with no recent travel out of the county and is in mandatory isolation at home.
According to the Health Department they are now “recovering nicely”.
Investigation to identify potential close contacts of the individual remains on-going and once identified, any close contacts will be notified by the Health Department of their potential exposure to COVID-19 and placed under mandatory quarantine to monitor for symptoms.
The Health Department recommends residents practice social distancing and proper germ prevention practices in order to hamper the spread of the virus.
Anyone with questions regarding COVID-19 are encouraged to call the NYSDOH Coronavirus hotline at 1-888-364-3065.

Western New York reports it’s first coronavirus-related death.
A patient at Rochester General Hospital passed away from the virus according to the Monroe County Health Department.
The man has been identified by family members as 54-year-old Alvin Simmons.
The county says several of the 14 people who have been infected, are currently in the hospital.
Coronavirus cases have also now been confirmed in Niagara and Wyoming Counties.

The City of Batavia has declared a State of Emergency continuing in effect for no more than five 5 days in anticipation for the arrival of the Covid-19 New Coronavirus in the City.
Along with the State of Emergency the Liberty Center for Youth remains closed until further notice while all City offices are closed to the public.
The City will conduct business with the public remotely with the drop box at the front of City Hall for making bill paymens.
City Council meetings will be closed to the public until further notice as well as all other regularly scheduled board, committee, task force, or other official City of Batavia meetings.

The State Legislature is expected to be back in session today, and one order of business will be to help employees affected by coronavirus.
They’re set to approve a paid sick leave package that will give relief to those quarantined due to the disease.
It will guarantee at least two weeks of paid leave and protect the jobs of all private sector employees.
Public employees who work for companies that employ 100 or more people will get the same coverage.
All employees of smaller companies will receive job protection and have access to disability and family leave benefits while some will also get paid sick days.

City Declares State of Emergency

News Release

A State of Emergency is hereby declared in the City of Batavia, New York for a period of time beginning at 4:30 p.m. on March 17, 2020 and continuing in effect for a period not to exceed five (5) days.

The State of Emergency has been declared due to emergency conditions produced by:
the continuing Nationally declared state of emergency, the New York State declared state of emergency, the County of Genesee declared state of emergency, and the anticipated arrival of the Covid-19 New Coronavirus in the City of Batavia, New York.
Such conditions threaten or imperil the public health or safety of the citizens of this municipality.

As Chief Executive of this municipality, I have exercised the authority given to me under New York State Executive Law, Article 2-B, to preserve the public safety and hereby render all required and available assistance vital to the security, well-being and health of the citizens of the City.

I hereby direct all City Departments to take those steps necessary to protect life and property, public health and infrastructure and other such emergency assistance as deemed necessary. In addition, I direct the following specific actions.

1. The Liberty Center for Youth remains closed until further notice.

2. All City offices are closed to the public. The City will conduct business with the public remotely through the use of phones, computers, mail, or other means. These offices are otherwise closed to the public, unless a situation requires interaction with a member of the public as determined by the respective City department on a case by case basis. The drop box for the payment of bills is still available at the front of City Hall.

3. City Council meetings will be closed to the public until further notice. Provision will be made for the public to observe or otherwise remotely participate in City Council meetings.

4. All other regularly scheduled board, committee, task force, or other official City of Batavia meetings are closed to the public, and shall be either conducted by electronic means (phone, video conferencing, etc.) or cancelled.

5. City parks remain open for public use provided that the State of New York declared restrictions on congregating are followed. However, all rental or reservation uses of City facilities are suspended until further notice. This includes parks, sports complexes, buildings, roadways, or public walkways that are owned and/or operated by the City of Batavia.

First Confirmed Case of COVID-19 in Genesee County

News Release

“On March 17, 2020 one resident in Genesee County tested positive for novel COVID-19 (coronavirus)” stated Paul Pettit, director of Genesee and Orleans Counties Departments of Health. The individual is over 65 years of age. The individual was confirmed through testing at the Erie County Health Lab Tuesday afternoon, Pettit continued. The individual has had no recent out of county travel. “The individual is in mandatory isolation at home and is ‘recovering nicely.’ ”

The Genesee County Department of Health has begun an intensive investigation to identify potential close contacts of the individual. Once identified, any close contacts will be notified of their potential exposure to COVID-19 and placed under mandatory quarantine to monitor for symptoms.

While spread of COVID-19 is concerning, it is not unexpected. The Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments have been preparing and responding to this possibility for weeks under the guidance of the NYSDOH and the CDC. Residents who are experiencing a fever, with cough and/or shortness of breath are advised to call your health care provider before going to seek medical care.

In order to hamper the spread of the virus, residents can practice social distancing and proper germ prevention practices:

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

Stay home when you are sick.

Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

Avoid people who are sick.

Disinfect high-traffic surfaces often.

If you have questions about recent travel and symptoms regarding COVID-19, please call the NYSDOH Coronavirus hotline: 1-888-364-3065.

Morning News Briefing

Gov. Andrew Cuomo

Governor Andrew Cuomo has signed an executive order directing all schools in New York to close by Wednesday, March 18th for two weeks ending April 1st.
At that time, the state will reassess whether to extend the school closures further and continue to suspend the 180-day instructional requirement.
Schools that exceed the closure period without state authorization will not be exempted from the 180-day rule.
According to the Governor this action will ensure consistency and uniformity across the state in instructional time for this extraordinary school year.
School districts will also be required to develop a plan for alternative instructional options, including distance learning; distribution and availability of meals; and daycare, with an emphasis on children of parents of first responders and healthcare workers.

Governor Cuomo issued another executive order Monday evening delaying village elections statewide until the April 28th primary election.

The City of Batavia has closed the Clerk’s Office to the public until further notice.
Residents can contact the Clerk’s Office via phone and/or email if you have any questions by calling 345-6305, opt 5, opt 1.
Residents who need to make a payment to the City can use the dropbox outside of City Hall, pay through personal online banking, call with a credit card numbers, and have the option to mail checks.
Anyone looking to contact the City Manager’s Office and the Office of Public Works are asked to call in advance before visiting the facility.

The Batavia Ice Rink will also close until further notice, effective this morning.

All visitation has been suspended at the VA Clinic in Batavia and Volunteers should not report unless otherwise directed.
Veterans who have a scheduled appointment should keep their appointment however If you have a fever, cough, or shortness of breath, please stay home and contact your primary care provider.
If a Veteran is in need of a walk-in clinic appointment, they are asked to please contact the clinic ahead of coming in.
The Primary Care Call Center number is 716-862-8567.

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases is closing in on one-thousand in New York State.
There are over 900 Empire State residents being treated right now and the number of coronavirus-related deaths is also increasing.
To try and keep the disease from spreading, Governor Cuomo has signed an executive order allowing the state to increase hospital capacity to deal with the potential influx of coronavirus cases.

The State Legislature has shut down temporarily but lawmakers could reconvene at the Capitol tomorrow.
Officials say the decision to scrap yesterday’s Senate and Assembly sessions was made in the interest of efficiency and protecting the health of lawmakers and staff.
Both chambers were supposed to vote on a package of bills involving the coronavirus, including paid sick leave for private-sector employees.
Lawmakers and Governor Cuomo say they’re also trying to hammer out a state budget before the April 1st deadline.

Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen will have a new top wide receiver to throw to this season.
The Bills have acquired Stefon Diggs from the Minnesota Vikings in exchange for several draft picks.
The 26 year old will join a receiving corps that also includes John Brown and Cole Beasley.
Last season, Diggs caught 63 passes for over 11-hundred yards and six touchdowns.

Salvation Army Adjusts to COVID 19

News Release

The Salvation Army has significantly increased its preparation for operations during this outbreak of the novel coronavirus as well as ramping up efforts to mitigate the spread of the virus. The Salvation Army is taking unprecedented measures to make sure it keeps its doors open and continues to serve those in need.

Locally in order to do this we have made some temporary changes. We have suspended all programming including Monday evening Bible study, Tuesday luncheons and Wednesday evening Youth activities. Our Mobile Pantry food distribution scheduled for Wednesday; April 1st has been cancelled. Our Emergency Food Pantry will be available by calling our office at (585)343-6284. Our Emergency Disaster Services team has made itself available to the Genesee County Office of Emergency Management if they are needed.

Major Ivan Rock, the Commander of the Empire State Division, says The Salvation Army will continue to do everything possible to provide for those in need. “People have turned to The Salvation Army in times of crisis for 155 years,” he said. We emphasize that these changes are temporary and look forward to returning to a regular schedule.

City of Batavia Clerk’s Office to Close for In-Person Transactions

News Release

The City of Batavia is taking all reasonable precautions to keep City employees and residents safe from contracting and spreading the flu and coronavirus. To this end, the City of Batavia is announcing that the Clerk’s Office, located at One Batavia City Centre-inside City Hall- will be closed to the public beginning Monday, March 16th at 4:30 PM until further notice.

The City has multiple options to assist you, and is happy to speak to you via phone and/or email if you have any questions. To contact the City Clerk’s Office please call (585) 345-6305, opt 5, opt 1.

Residents who need to make a payment to the City can use the drobox outside of City Hall, pay through personal online banking, call with a credit card numbers, and have the option to mail checks.

Residents and customers looking to visit the City Manager’s Office and the Office of Public Works (building inspections and permits) are asked to call in advance before visiting the facility. Inspections can be reached at (585) 345-6345 and the City Manager’s Office can be reached at (585) 345-6330

The Batavia Ice Rink will also close until further notice- effective Tuesday March 17th at 7 AM.

Batavia Downs Gaming and OTB Branches to Close Tonight

In accordance with a directive given by Governor Cuomo, Batavia Downs Gaming and all OTB Branches will be closed for business as of 8pm tonight, Monday, March 16th.

The health and wellness of our guests and staff is our top priority and has been throughout this entire process as we have continued to work alongside our State and local governments as well as the New York Gaming Commission.

We will provide an update when the gaming floor and branches will re-open, taking into account guidance from the State’s public health authorities as soon as it is received.

Guests can continue to monitor our website and Facebook for any questions they may have. We ask that you please follow the directives given by the government to help prevent the spread of the virus. We wish you and your family our best at this time.

Special Edition of Main & Center: Covid-19, Local View

United Memorial Medical Center President Daniel Ireland was joined by Genesee County Health Department Officials Mary Hamilton and Christine Voos on a special edition of Main & Center.

AMID LACK OF FEDERAL DIRECTION, GOVERNOR CUOMO, GOVERNOR MURPHY AND GOVERNOR LAMONT ANNOUNCE REGIONAL APPROACH TO COMBATTING COVID-19

Press Release:

The three States will limit crowd capacity for recreational and social gatherings to 50 people – effective by 8 PM tonight

Restaurants and bars will close for on premise service and move to take-out and delivery only effective 8 PM tonight

Movie theaters, gyms and casinos will temporarily close effective 8 PM tonight

Uniform approach to social distancing will slow spread of COVID-19 throughout the tri-state area

Amid a lack of federal direction and nationwide standards, New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy and Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont today announced a regional approach to combatting the novel coronavirus – or COVID-19 – throughout the tri-state area.

These uniform standards will limit crowd capacity for social and recreational gatherings to 50 people, effective 8 PM tonight. This follows updated guidance that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued yesterday recommending the cancellation or postponement of in-person events consisting of 50 people or more.

The three governors also announced restaurants and bars will close for on premise service and move to take-out and delivery services only. These establishments will be provided a waiver for carry-out alcohol. These measures will take effect at 8 PM tonight.

Finally, the three governors said they will temporarily close movie theaters, gyms and casinos, effective at 8 PM tonight.

This uniform approach to social distancing is meant to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus, or COVID-19.

“Our primary goal right now is to slow the spread of this virus so that the wave of new infections doesn’t crash our healthcare system, and everyone agrees social distancing is the best way to do that,” Governor Cuomo said. “This is not a war that can be won alone, which is why New York is partnering with our neighboring states to implement a uniform standard that not only keeps our people safe but also prevents ‘state shopping’ where residents of one state travel to another and vice versa. I have called on the federal government to implement nationwide protocols but in their absence we are taking this on ourselves.”

Governor Murphy said, “With all we are seeing in our state – and across our nation and around the world – the time for us to take our strongest, and most direct, actions to date to slow the spread of coronavirus is now. I’ve said many times over the past several days that, in our state, we are going to get through this as one New Jersey family. But if we’re all in this together, we must work with our neighboring states to act together. The work against coronavirus isn’t just up to some of us, it’s up to all of us.”

Governor Lamont said, “The only way to effectively fight the spread of COVID-19 is by working together as states. We have shared interests, and a patchwork of closures and restrictions is not the best way forward. I know that because of this collaboration, we will save lives.”

WYOMING COUNTY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE EVENTS CANCELLED

Press Release:

The Wyoming County Chamber of Commerce is cancelling the following events based on the guidance from the CDC and general precautions being observed due to the coronavirus, and the avoidance of people meeting in groups. Other events or gatherings will be reviewed going forward on a case-by-case basis.

March 20, 2020 – Congressional Meet and Greet Networking Breakfast at the Lodge at Hidden Valley is cancelled.

March 21-22 & March 28-29, 2020 – NYS Maple Producer’s Association has canceled Maple Weekends throughout New York State.

March 26, 2020 – Business after Hours networking event at East Hill Creamery is cancelled.

For questions, please contact the Wyoming County Chamber of Commerce at (585) 786-0307 updates and more information will be posted on the website www.wycochamber.org and Facebook.

Batavia First Presbyterian Church is suspending in-person worship

Press Release:

With the continued spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), Batavia First Presbyterian Church is suspending in-person worship and gatherings in the church building till March 26. Our desire is to follow the way of Christ by caring for the most vulnerable in our society and doing our part to stop the spread of the virus.

We will limit access to the church building to essential personnel. If you need access to the church building, please contact us at 585-343-0505 for an appointment.

We will continue to offer pastoral care and other support. We want to journey with you during this difficult time. Please contact Pastor Roula Alkhouri at roulaalkhouri@outlook.com or 585-343-0505 with your prayer or pastoral needs.

We will continue to monitor the situation to pay attention to how God will use us to be the healing and caring hands and feet of Christ in our community during this crisis.

To access our devotional and recorded worship, go to our website www.fpcbatavia.org or our Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/fpcbatavia/

Morning News Briefing

The entire GLOW region remains under an official State of Emergency due to Coronavirus concerns
Early Saturday evening County officials made the declaration and also announced the closing of all schools in Genesee County until further notice.
The rest of the GLOW county schools have also been closed until further notice due to the State of Emergency.
Paul Petit the County Health Director said that there have been no confirmed cases of the COVID 19 virus in Genesee County but also said that it’s “inevitable we will see cases here…”
The State of Emergency, is a technicality which allows the affected municipalities and school districts to procure goods and services from higher level government agencies.
Officials have stressed that the State of Emergency does not in any way impact travel.
There is a growing list of community event postponements and cancellations which can be seen here.

Batavia Police are also practicing precautions over coronavirus concerns.
Police Headquarters will remain locked at all times until further notice with officers practicing “social distancing” techniques as advised by the County’s Health Department.
A per usual call 911 immediately if you have an emergency and officers will be dispatched to you.

The area’s largest electric utility National Grid, has announced it is suspending collections related activities with no service disconnections through the end of April.

Batavia man arrested for attempted assault and choking at a Washington Ave apartment.
City Police took 27 year old Kyle Scheuerlein of Overlook Drive into custody on counts of Criminal Obstruction of Breathing, Criminal Possession of a Weapon and Attempted Assault following a domestic incident at a Washington Ave apartment last Sunday.
He is due back in Batavia City Court on March 26th

A Highland Park man busted for Batavia Burglary.
18 year old Devon Wright was apprehended by City Police last Thursday following investigation into an incident at a West Main Street business in Batavia on March 2nd.
Wright allegedly refused to leave, attempted to cause injury to the employee and then damaged property outside the business.
He was charged with Burglary, Criminal Mischief and Assault and was released on his own recognizance.

WBTA is devoting the entire hour of our Main and Center this morning to the local response and readiness to COVID 19.
Among our guests will be representatives from the Genesee-Orleans Health Department and Daniel Ireland, the President of United Memorial Medical Center.
We will be taking your phoned in questions at (585) 344-1490.
The program begins after the news at 9 this morning on all WBTA platforms.

RTS to Continue Regular Service in Rochester and Genesee County

News Release

Following State of Emergency declarations this weekend in every county served by the Regional Transit Service, and confirmation of the second case of coronavirus in Monroe County, RTS released the following information today.

“Based on conversations over the past few days with Monroe County Executive Adam Bello, Monroe County Commissioner of Public Health Dr. Michael Mendoza, RTS will continue providing service based on our normal schedule,” said RTS CEO Bill Carpenter. “Any future decisions we make regarding RTS service will be based on science, facts, and guidance from Governor Andrew Cuomo, the NYS Department of Health, County Executive Bello, and Dr. Mendoza.”

Preventive Measures:

To help prevent the spread of the coronavirus, RTS has taken the following steps:

Bus & Facility Cleaning:

  • Buses are cleaned every day and detail cleaned with disinfecting wipes according to guidance from the NYS Department of Health.
  • The RTS Transit Center is being cleaned and wiped down three times a day.

Contingency Plan:

If the virus spreads and leads to RTS needing to reduce service, we will do so in a way that is responsible and easy to understand. We have a plan in place and are ready to implement it if needed. To be clear, RTS is not implementing a service reduction at this time.

Liberty Center for Youth Closed

News Release

In response to the State of Emergency called by Genesee County officials and the closure of Genesee County schools, The Liberty Center for Youth will be closed until further notice.

The City of Batavia will continue to take all reasonable precautions to keep City employees, residents, and students safe from contracting and spreading the Coronavirus.

  • Please continue to follow social distancing techniques
  • Stay home if you are ill
  • Wash your hands with soap and water frequently
  • Above all, remain calm

All official updates on Coronavirus will continue to come from the Genesee County Health Department and you can stay up to date by visiting the County’s website.

Batavia Police Issue COVID-19 Precautions

News Release

In an effort to help slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus (coronavirus) the following precautions will be implemented at the City of Batavia Police Department, effective immediately;

Police Headquarters located at 10 West Main Street will remain locked at all times. Anyone responding to the police station can utilize the phone in the vestibule which will contact our dispatch center at all times.
If you are in need of a copy of a report please contact our Records Clerk at 585-345-6303 before responding to the Station, you will be given directions on how to proceed with your request at that time.
If you need to report a crime that has already occurred or simply want to speak with an officer, we ask that you contact our dispatch center at 585-345-6350. The dispatchers will obtain your information and an officer will be in contact with you as soon as possible.
If you have an emergency call 911 immediately and officers will be dispatched to you.
We ask that if you can do so to please meet the officers outside and speak with them rather than the officers coming into your home.
Officers will be practicing “social distancing” techniques as advised by the County’s Health Department.
These measures are to ensure that we can adequately respond to emergencies and to help safeguard both the public and the police officers from accidental exposure to the virus. Please see the Genesee County Public Health Department website for additional information about the COVID-19 virus.

We appreciate your patience and understanding as we work through these difficult days together. Rest assured the City of Batavia; the Police Department and its employees are ready to aid in any way possible to ensure that our community remains safe at all times.

Batavia Schools Announce Closure Plan

Batavia City Schools Superintendent Anibal Solor has announced on Sunday, via the district’s website, the following Closure Plan effective March 16. All classes are cancelled until further notice.

Food Distribution: “Grab and Go” breakfast and lunch will be available for students and family members under the age of 18, from 9AM- 12PM, Monday through Friday at the front entrances of Batavia High School, Batavia Middle School, John Kennedy Intermediate School, Jackson Primary School and Robert Morris.
We are also currently working with community partners and agencies on providing late afternoon/ evening meal options.

Instructional Resources: Teachers have prepared instructional lessons and activities for students to stay engaged with school work while school is not in session.

Staff Reporting: All essential staff will report to allow us to answer school phones, clean buildings, distribute meals and support any questions or concerns.

Facility and Building Access: Teachers and High School students will be afforded an opportunity on Monday, March 16th to come in and pick up any personal items or classroom materials they will need during this closure period.

The district has also created a COVID-19 webpage that will list a variety of resources and information on our district website.

Rochester Regional / UMMC Reschedules Surgeries

Statement from Rochester Regional Health:

“As the COVID-19 outbreak continues to evolve, Rochester Regional Health joins leading health systems around the world to proactively reschedule elective surgeries at all RRH facilities beginning Monday, March 16 and continuing through March 29. This time frame may change as we monitor developments surrounding COVID-19.

Our decision, made in lockstep with our physician leaders across the health system, was guided by the recommendations of the American College of Surgeons and the United States Surgeon General. Patients are being contacted to reschedule their procedures to a later date. We are making every effort to make this rescheduling process as convenient for our patients as possible.

This is one of many safeguards Rochester Regional Health is implementing in our ongoing effort to limit the spread of COVID-19 in our community and to protect the health and safety of our team members and our patients. “

WBTA SUNDAY NEWS

Batavia and Genesee County now officially under a State of Emergency due to the Corona Virus.
County officials made the declaration early last evening.
That declaration also announced the closing of all schools in Genesee County – including the Batavia City School District – effective tomorrow.
The schools will remain closed until further notice.
County Health Director Paul Petit said that there have been no confirmed cases of the COVID 19 virus in Genesee County, he noted there have been confirmed cases in neighboring Monroe County.
Petit said it is, quote, “inevitable we will see cases here in Genesee County.
A State of Emergency has also been declared in Orleans, Wyoming and Livingston Counties, closing schools there until further notice.
There is a growing list of community event postponements and cancellations, along with several churches that have cancelled services for today. That list cane be seen on the cancellation page of our website, WBTAi-dot-com. That list will be updated throughout the day.

A State of Emergency, as declared in Genesee and Wyoming Counties, is a technicality. The declaration allows the affected municipalities and school districts to procure goods and services from higher level government agencies.
Officials stressed that the State of Emergency does not in any way impact travel.

National Grid, the largest electric utility in the area has announced it is suspending collections related activity. The company says there will be no service disconnections through the end of April.

WBTA is devoting the entire hour of our Main and Center tomorrow morning to the local response and readiness to COVID 19.
Among our guests will be representatives from the Genesee-Orleans Health Department and Daniel Ireland, the President of United Memorial Medical Center.
We will be taking your phoned in questions.
Our program begins after the news at 9 tomorrow morning on all the platforms of WBTA: including WBTA AM and FM, and streaming at WBTAi.com or via our mobile app.

State of Emergency Declared in Genesee County, All Schools Closed Until Further Notice

 

News Release
Issued 7:30PM, March 14, 2020
From: Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments

 

“Over the past week, COVID-19 has evolved rapidly. While Genesee County has no confirmed cases, there are confirmed cases in neighboring counties and increased local testing. I believe it is inevitable we will see cases here in Genesee County,” stated Rochelle Stein, Chair of the Genesee County Legislature. “With this in mind and after discussion with Paul Pettit, Director of the Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments, I am declaring a state of emergency for Genesee County. This declaration allows us to procure goods and services as well as required and available assistance to municipalities and school districts. I am recommending that all schools in Genesee County close to students effective immediately for an undetermined amount of time.”

“We want to remind people the risk in our community still remains relatively low and these decisions are based on the need to slow transmission in our communities,” stated Pettit. “Through ongoing discussions with all 10 school districts and county administration, this unified decision is based on the increased activity in our county and has led to these preventive measures.”

A statement from Kevin MacDonald, District Superintendent of the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership, “in collaboration with the New York State and local Departments of Health, the component districts of the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership will be closed to students effective Monday, March 16, 2020 until further notice. Component districts will be sharing messages to their respective communities regarding details of their closures. We ask all our community members to take care of each other as we navigate this public health matter.”

Weekend News Briefing

Trump on Friday declared a national state of emergency over the coronavirus pandemic.
The President is now encouraging lawmakers on both sides of the aisle to pass the coronavirus relief package.
Trump tweeted the Families First Coronavirus Response Act has his full support.
He says it will follow his direction for free tests and paid sick leave for impacted American workers.
Trump noted he also told the Labor and Treasury secretaries to issue regulations that will keep small businesses from getting hurt.
President Trump also declared this Sunday March 15th will be a National Day of Prayer.
Trump said, “We are a country that, throughout our history, has looked to God for protection and strength in times like these.”
In a second tweet, he added, “together, we will easily prevail.”

The list of local establishments and organizations that have postponed or cancelled events over public health concerns continues to grow.
The Genesee County Chamber of Commerce has announced they are not going to hold the Home Show at Falleti Ice Arena as planned.
Chamber President Tom Turnbull said that due to the Governor’s ban on gatherings of 500 or more people the Chamber will be postponing the Home Show until later this year at a time when (and if) the pandemic ban is lifted.
Bishop Edward Scharfenberger of the Buffalo Diocese has temporarily dispensed the Catholic faithful from the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days during the coronavirus threat.
The Batavia Indoor Soccer Tournament scheduled for this weekend is cancelled. The New York State Public High School Athletic Assocation winter regional and state championships will be postponed indefinitely.
Spaghetti Dinner to benefit Volunteers for Animals scheduled for Saturday March 14th has been cancelled as well as the Taste of Notre Dame scheduled for next Saturday Mar 21st.
The Museum Quilt Guild is cancelling their March 21st meeting and Community Service Day. Le Roy Village Green have implemented visitor restrictions and screens for staff and essential visitors.
Premier Genesee Center for Nursing & Rehabilitation has banned visiting March 25th. Genesee Community College is closing classrooms through the 18th to resume via remote on March 19th, through the end of the semester.
All inmate visitation is suspended at the Genesee, Orleans and Livingston County Jail facilities until further notice.
Check our School closings and cancellations page for the latest.

Tune in to a special edition of Main & Center on Monday morning.
Dan Fischer hosts Corona Virus, Local View” with guests from Genesee County Health Department and Daniel Ireland, President of United Memorial Medical Center.
WBTA is devoting the entire hour to what you and your family need to know about the Covid 19 virus.

CHAMBER OF COMMERCE HOME SHOW POSTPONED

Press Release:

The Genesee County Chamber of Commerce has postponed their 7th Annual Home Show due to Governor Cuomo’s coronavirus ban on gatherings of 500 or more people. The Home Show was scheduled for April 3-5 at the Falleti Ice Arena.

The Chamber plans on postponing the Home Show until later this year at a time when the pandemic ban is lifted.

“The purpose of our Home Show has always been to put our area businesses in front of as many potential customers as possible,” said Chamber President Tom Turnbull. “We are trying hard to come up with ways to do just that during these extraordinary times.”

K-9 Rayzor Joins the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office

 

K-9, Rayzor, and his handler, Deputy James D. Stack

Press Release:

Sheriff William A. Sheron, Jr. is pleased to introduce the new Genesee County Sheriff’s Office K-9, Rayzor, (a 14-month-old male German Shepherd Malinois) and his handler, Deputy James D. Stack.

The dog is named to honor Genesee County Correction Officer Raymond F. Thompson who passed away while performing his duties in the morning hours of May 30, 2002.

Deputy Stack and Rayzor will be attending the Niagara Regional Police Service canine training program in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada, beginning this coming Monday through the end of June.

We would like to extend our sincere appreciation to all the individuals, students and businesses for their generous donations that made the addition of K-9 Rayzor possible. We would also like to extend our appreciation to all the students that submitted naming suggestions.

“We are pleased to have Rayzor as an addition to our agency,” said Sheriff Sheron.

Sheriff William Sheron Jr., Renee Thompson, Deputy James D. Stack

BHS Alumni Pep Rally postponed

Press Release:

The BCSD Foundation, Inc has decided to postpone our event (the Alumni Pep Rally on March 29, 2020 at Eli Fish). A new date will be determined in the future.

Morning News Briefing

The City of Batavia has issued a statement listing precautions they are implementing to keep City employees and residents safe from the spread of flu and coronavirus.
City staff has been directed to attend meetings via conference call and all City meeting facilities and conference rooms will be closed for external bookings and meetings until further notice.
They have a ban on all non-essential travel for personnel training, with online training being encouraged and staff will continue to clean all facilities and wipe down all “high-touch” surfaces during the day.
City Management will be attending daily internal briefings to assess readiness and stay up to date on the latest developments.
The City, County Manager, emergency personnel and other public organizations will continue to coordinate with each other to keep information flowing.

A number of local establishments and organizations have postponed or cancelled events as a precaution to protect public health.
The Batavia Indoor Soccer Tournament scheduled for this weekend is cancelled.
The New York State Public High School Athletic Assocation winter regional and state championships will be postponed indefinitely.
Friday’s Lenten Fish Fries from St. James Episcopal Church in Batavia will be Takeout only and dining in has been cancelled through April 3rd.
Le Roy Village Green have implemented visitor restrictions and screens for staff and essential visitors.
Premier Genesee Center for Nursing & Rehabilitation has banned visiting March 25th.
Genesee Community College is closing classrooms through the 18th to resume via remote on March 19th, through the end of the semester.
All inmate visitation is suspended at the Genesee County Jail until further notice.

All Monroe County hospitals, including Rochester General and Unity Hospital are implementing enhanced visitor restrictions and visitor screenings beginning today at 12 p.m.
Rochester Regional Health is extending the enhanced visitor restrictions and visitor screenings to all RRH facilities, including all RRH hospitals and long-term care facilities within and outside of Monroe County.
Access to Rochester Regional Heath facilities will be limited to designated entrances only and they will be staffed to screen visitors at arrival.
Visitors will be asked upon arrival if they are experiencing a cough, fever or shortness of breath.

The number of New Yorkers being treated for the coronavirus is continuing to climb steadily.
Officials say there are over 300 confirmed cases of the disease statewide.
Starting at five p-m, there will be no gatherings of 500 people or more allowed until further notice.
Any locations holding fewer than 500 people can only operate at 50 percent capacity.
Places like schools, hospitals, mass transit facilities and nursing homes aren’t subject to the restrictions.
Officials say they hope this decision limits the spread of coronavirus statewide.

Law enforcement across New York will be keeping an extra eye out for drunk drivers over the next few days.
State Police say their Saint Patrick’s Day patrols begin today and run through Wednesday.
Travelers can expect to see more sobriety checkpoints as Troopers look to get unsafe drivers off the road.
Over 250 people were arrested for drunk driving during last year’s crackdown period.

The Buffalo Sabres may not be returning to the ice anytime soon.
The team was supposed to play the Montreal Canadiens last night, but the game never happened since the NHL decided to suspend the season.
Officials say the decision was made because of concerns over the spread of coronavirus.
The NHL is hoping to resume play soon and eventually award the Stanley Cup.
If the Sabres play again this year, they have 13 games left in the regular season.

City of Batavia Issues Corona Virus Statement

News Release

The City of Batavia is taking all reasonable precautions to keep City employees and residents safe from contracting and spreading the flu and Coronavirus. The City will continue to clean all facilities and wipe down all “high-touch” surfaces during the day to keep residents and staff healthy and safe.

• The City has issued a ban on all non-essential training travel for personnel, however personnel are encouraged to participate in online training when available.
• All City meeting facilities and conference rooms will be closed for external bookings and meetings at this time until further notice.
• City staff is directed to attend meetings via conference call when able and reduce contact with colleagues and professional service vendors.
• The City Management will be attending daily internal briefings to assess readiness and stay up to date on the latest developments.
• The City, and the County Manager and emergency personnel and other public organizations continue to coordinate with each other to keep information flowing.

For residents and customers of the City, we encourage you to continue to use common sense and when possible conduct your business via phone and email especially if you have flu like symptoms. The City has multiple options for you to pay your bills and is happy to speak to you via phone (585) 345-6300 and press 5. Also, you may email by going to the City website under the contact us link if you have any questions.

Residents who need to pay utility bills, taxes, parking tickets, and other miscellaneous bills are encouraged to use the drop box outside of City Hall, pay through personal online banking, call with a credit card number (fee will apply), or mail your payment.

If you need a dog license, hunting/fishing license, birth, death or marriage certificate/license we encourage you to plan ahead. We may be able to process your application via email or fax. You can also obtain information from the Frequently Asked Questions section on the City Clerk’s Page. You can prepare your documents in advance of your trip to the Clerk’s Office so you only need to come in once.

Visit the City Clerk’s webpage for application instructions for the following documents:
• Birth certificate
• Marriage certificate
• Death certificate

A visit to the City Clerk’s is still required for the following:
• Marriage license
• Dog license
• Hunting/Fishing license

All official updates on Coronavirus will continue to come from the Genesee County Health Department and you can stay up-to-date by visiting the County’s website HERE

State Athletic Association Postpones H.S. Basketball and Hockey Regional and State Championships

The NYSPHSAA winter regional and state championships will be postponed indefinitely. It is certainly understood that postponing the remaining winter state championships is disappointing, however the opportunity to participate in a NYSPHSAA championship event does not outweigh our responsibility and obligation to ensure students participate in a healthy and safe environment.

The impacted events include the NYSPHSAA Ice Hockey, Bowling, Boys and Girls Basketball Regional and State Championships.

The postponement has cancelled Girls Regional Basketball games for Elba and Pembroke on Saturday.

NYSPHSAA Executive Director Dr. Robert Zayas said “It was my goal to complete the winter championships on schedule. It has become increasingly more difficult to host these championship events with the number of challenges that have been presented. I also have concerns as the Executive Director of NYSPHSAA and a parent, that students will be participating in an event under circumstances that are not conducive to a quality and beneficial participation experience.”

As information becomes available NYSPHSAA will provide updates.

WYOMING COUNTY JOB FAIR POSTPONED

Press Release:

The Wyoming County Job Fair scheduled for Friday, March 13, 2020, has been postponed due to the general precautions being observed due to the coronavirus, and the avoidance of people meeting in large gatherings.

It is anticipated that the event will be re-scheduled at a later date. The Chamber has invited businesses, who were planning to be in attendance, to post their available jobs on the Chamber website Job Posting page https://www.wycochamber.org/links-and-resources/job-postings

For questions, please contact the Wyoming County Chamber of Commerce at (585) 786-0307.

GENESEE COUNTY SHERIFF WILLIAM A. SHERON, JR. ANNOUNCES THAT ALL INMATE VISITATION IS SUSPENDED

Press Release:

Sheriff William A. Sheron, Jr. announced this morning that he is suspending all inmate visitation at the Genesee County Jail. This will take effect tomorrow morning, Friday, March 13, until further notice. This is a precautionary measure to prevent the risk of exposure to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) to employees, inmates, and families.

Morning News Briefing

Concerns over the coronavirus have led to a cancellation of classroom learning for all GCC students locally and SUNY students across the state.
Students effected by the precaution will be taking their classes online and won’t be returning to their classrooms for the rest of the spring semester.
Classes will not be held from the 16th through the 18th at the Batavia campus with remote online classes beginning March 19th.
The Tech Wars event scheduled for today on the Batavia campus has also been canceled.
While classrooms may be empty, students who aren’t able to leave will we able to reside in their dorms and campuses will be staying open as well.

 

City woman busted for Leandra’s Law in Batavia.
City Police report the arrest of 26 year old Lyndsey Pietrzak of Highland Park following a traffic stop on West Main Street in Batavia on February 29th.
Pietrzak was allegedly driving drunk with a child under 15 as a passenger.
She was charged with felony counts of DWI under Leadra’s Law, and Endangering the Welfare of a Child.
Pietrzak is scheduled to reappear in Batavia City Court on March 18th.

The first case of coronavirus has been confirmed in Western New York.
Monroe County Executive Adam Bello says a resident has tested positive for the disease.
In a statement, Bello said the individual is being quarantined at home and that they became infected while traveling.
Health officials are expected to release more information later today.

After leading their team to a 14 and 8 record this season, three members of the Batavia High Lady Blue Devils varsity basketball team received Monroe County League Division 4 accolades.
Bryn Wormley was honored as first team all-league, Mackenzie Reigle as first team all-league and Division 4 Player of the Year, and Emma Krolczyk as second team all-league.
Wormley and Reigle are juniors while Krolczyk is a senior.

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases is continuing to spike each day in New York.
There are now 216 people being treated for the disease, and Governor Cuomo says the state will enter contracts with over two dozen private labs to increase the number of tests that can be done each day.
Labs will be able to start working once they’re approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
A majority of the coronavirus cases are still in the Westchester County and New York City areas.

The Buffalo Sabres are scheduled to be back in action tonight as they look for a second straight win.
The team to take on is the Montreal Canadiens at Bell Centre.
However, the NHL is expected to make a decision today on whether any games will be played due to the coronavirus.
If the two teams face-off, the contest is set to begin at 7:00 p.m.

Morning News Briefing

Investigation by the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office into a traffic stop on Kelsey Road in Batavia has ended in arrest for a Caledonia woman allegedly driving on drugs with two children.
In December of last year Deputies stopped 30 year old Samantha Reff of Middle Road Caledonia after she was allegedly observed speeding down the town road.
Lawmen say they discovered Reff was in possession drugs and impaired by them all while accompanied by two children in the vehicle who were both under 16.
She is facing counts of DWAI by Drugs under Leandra’s Law, Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance and two counts of Endangering the Welfare of a Child.
Reff was given an appearance ticket returnable on April 2nd to Batavia Town Court.

Domestic incident lands a Perry man in lockup.
44 year old Jeffrey Matson of Perry was arrested following a domestic incident on Oatka Road in Perry.
Matson is accused of violating an order of protection during a domestic incident by pushing a female victim and taking her phone to prevent her calling police, all in the presence of a five year old child.
Matson was arrested and charged with Criminal Contempt, Aggravated Family Offense, Endangering the Welfare of a Child, Criminal Mischief and Harassment.
Matson was committed to the Wyoming County Jail in lieu of $2,500 cash bail, with his next court appearance scheduled for May 13th.

While there have been no coronavirus cases in Western New York, area hospitals are taking steps to protect patients.
Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center says visiting hours on medical floors are now only noon until six and only family members who have been authorized by patients will be allowed to visit.
Anyone under the age of 14, recent travelers to countries affected by coronavirus or people who aren’t feeling well won’t be allowed to visit anyone.
All Rochester Regional Health locations are also taking precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and have enacted additional protocols to protect employees, patients and the community.

Wegmans is limiting the number of certain items customers can buy as concerns over coronavirus grow.
Right now, folks can only purchase a set amount of bath tissue, hand sanitizer and other related products.
People have been buying them in bulk due to concerns there may be a shortage should the coronavirus continue to spread.
The supermarket chain says it’s putting those items back on store shelves as soon as they arrive.

While concerns over the coronavirus continue to linger, organizers of Rochester’s Saint Patrick’s Day Parade say the celebration will still be happening this weekend.
The parade begins Saturday at the intersection of East Street and Alexander Street.
Any decision to cancel the event would be made after talking with state and local officials.
Anyone going to the parade is urged to practice good hygiene.

Morning News Briefing

The Genesee County Sheriff’s Office is investigating after the body of an older area woman was found in a pond behind a barn on Maltby Road in Oakfield late last night.
Oakfield Fire Department and Mercy medics were dispatched at around quarter after 11 last night to the pond located between Fisher and Weatherwax roads with Sheriff’s Deputies responding as well.
After initial first responders arrived Fire and medics were told to respond in non-emergency mode.
According to Deputies, they were told the woman apparently fell in the pond after going outside looking for her dogs.
Lawmen could not determine how long she was in the water.
More information along with the woman’s identity is expected to be released at a later time by the Sheriff’s Office.

Batavia City Council members reluctantly voted to override the state’s 2 percent property tax cap at Monday night’s Business Meeting at City Hall passing a 7.5 percent property tax increase as part of the City’s 2020-21 budget.
According to City Council President Eugene Jankowski the decision was a disappointing one but also necessary…

 

Both Council Members Paul Viele and Rose Mary Christian cast dissenting votes against overriding the tax cap and the two were also outvoted after the rest of the legislative body voted to adopt the $17.8 million general fund spending plan.
Christian cast the lone vote in opposition to raising water rates by 3.5 percent as well. Check The Batavian for more on the story.

Mud Porch fire reported at a Summit Street residence in the City.
City Fire crews were called yesterday evening to a residence at 31 Summit St. in the city after report of smoke and flames were seen coming from the rear of the home.
The fire quickly went to a second alarm with Alexander’s Fast Team and Darien’s Rescue unit called to the scene along with Mercy medics.
Fire Chief Stefano Napolitano was on scene…

 

The chief said the residents made it out on their own after neighbors began pounding on their windows to alert them.
No injuries were reported, and the cause of the blaze remains under investigation. Check The Batavian for more on the story.

The number of flu-related deaths is on the rise again in Monroe County.
Health officials say 12 people have now died due to complications from the virus.
Ten of the individuals who lost their lives were over the age of 50.
The number of flu cases is dropping, with 323 new cases during the week ending February 29th.
That’s down from over 450 cases the week before.

For the first time since February, the Buffalo Sabres are celebrating a victory.
Dominik Kahun had the deciding goal in a shootout as the Sabres beat the Washington Capitals three-to-two at Key Bank Center last night.
Victor Olofsson and Jack Eichel also scored for Buffalo, who snapped a six-game losing streak.
The Sabres will look to make it back-to-back wins Thursday when they visit the Montreal Canadians.

Morning News Briefing

Five individuals were reportedly arrested for impaired or intoxicated driving and various other offenses by Genesee County Sheriff’s Deputies and City Police over the weekend.
41 year old Steven Rigoni of Roanoke Road Pavilion was arrested by Sheriff’s Deputies following report of an erratic driver on Clinton Street Road Batavia back in January of this year.
Rigoni allegedly failed to stop for deputies after activating their emergency lights and sirens and nearly ran into oncoming traffic attempting to evade lawmen.
Rigoni drove off the roadway into a snow bank and was ultimately charged with DWAI by drugs, Reckless Driving, Leaving the Scene of a Property Damage Accident, Failing to yield to an emergency vehicle and moving from a lane unsafely.
He is expected to appear in Batavia Town Court on March 19th.

Following an accident on route 33 Friday night in Stafford Sheriff’s Deputies’ arrested 26 year old Baltazar Sifuentes of Parkland Creek Lane in Chili.
Sifuentes reportedly lost control of his vehicle while allegedly driving with a Blood Alcohol Content of .08 or higher.
He was charged with DWI and moving from a lane unsafely and is expected in Stafford Town Court next Tuesday.

26 year old Michael Simcick of Keeney road Leroy was taken into custody by Sheriff’s Deputies after a traffic stop on Perry Road in Pavilion early yesterday morning. Simcick was charged with DWI, Refusing to Take a Breath Test, Unlawful Possession of Marijuana, Failure to Stop at Stop Sign, and Moving from a Lane Unsafely.

35 year old Jessica Revier of Hall Road Holley was hit with counts of Aggravated DWI, Speeding and Failing to Stop at a Stop Sign after being stopped by deputies on North Bergen Road Byron Saturday.

City Police arrested 50 year old Shane Reisman of Montclair Ave for DWI, Drinking alcohol in a Motor Vehicle on the Highway, Refusal to Take a Breath Test and Failing to Stop at a Stop Sign after he was pulled over on Trumbull Parkway earlier this month. All three are expected back in their respective courts next week.

Officials say there are now 105 confirmed coronavirus cases in New York State.
Most of the cases are downstate, but over the weekend, cases were confirmed in Saratoga County and Ulster County.
Governor Cuomo is urging the federal government to allow all state-approved private labs to handle coronavirus testing.
He also wants New Yorkers to remain calm and says a lot of effort is going into keeping the disease from spreading.

While coronavirus cases continue to grow, there’s a bit of good news on the spread of the flu statewide.
The Department of Health says there were 84-hundred confirmed flu cases during the week ending February 29th.
That’s a 20 percent drop from the week before.
The number of people hospitalized due to the flu was also down 17 percent.
Doctors are still urging folks to practice good hygiene since flu season typically doesn’t end until May.

The 48th annual Genesee County Chamber of Commerce Awards were given out last night at Quality Inn & Suites in Batavia.
This is the County’s premier event honoring businesses and individuals for their achievements in business, community service and volunteerism.
Honorees for 2019 include the Business of the Year Tompkins Bank of Castile, Agricultural Organization of the Year Call Lands/My-T-Acres, Special Service Recognition of the Year Purple Pony Therapeutic Horsemanship and Jeff Allen who was awarded as Geneseean of the Year.

The Buffalo Sabres will be back home tonight in hopes of snapping a six-game losing streak.
They’ll be hosting the Washington Capitals at KeyBank Center.
Recent losses have put the Sabres at risk of missing out on the playoffs for a ninth-straight season.
Faceoff for tonight’s contest is set for 7:00 p.m.

Weekend News Briefing

A Steuben County man is sentenced for sending death threats to a Muslim Congresswoman
56 year old Patrick Carlineo Jr. of Addison NY, appeared in federal court Friday where he was sentenced to serve 12 months and one day after being convicted of threatening to assault and murder a United States official, and being a felon in possession of firearms.
According to the prosecutor on March 21st of last year Carlineo placed a telephone call to the offices of Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, who represents the 5th Congressional District in Minnesota. A member of Congresswoman Omar’s staff answered the call at which time Carlineo questioned the Congresswoman’s support of the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas as well as threatening to shoot the congresswoman.
Carlineo was also ordered to forfeit five firearms and hundreds of rounds of ammunition.

27 year old Kyle Madden of Lake Street Road in Leroy has been arrested by Genesee County Sheriff’s Deputies following an investigation into a theft from a home on Lake Street Road on February 10th.
Madden is facing counts of grand larceny in the 4th degree, identity theft in the 3rd degree and criminal impersonation in the 2nd.
He is expect back in LeRoy Town Court at a later date.

As a precautionary measure the VA facility in Batavia has closed their main entrance with all visitors and staff required to go through screening via the western entrance called the ramp.
The screening is a series of questions established by the CDC asking visitors and staff about such things as their exposure to others with illness, recent travel history and possible symptoms they may be experiencing.

During a briefing on the novel coronavirus on Friday, Governor Andrew Cuomo confirmed 11 additional cases of the illness, bringing the statewide total to 44 confirmed cases in New York State.
Including new cases identified Friday morning, Nassau County has 4 confirmed cases, Rockland County has 2, New York City has 4 and the vast majority of the reports from Westchester County with 34 cases.
Additionally, the Governor announced travel insurance companies and travel agents will offer New York residents and businesses the ability to purchase coverage when making travel plans that would allow them to cancel a trip for any reason, including for reasons related to COVID-19.

Morning News Briefing

Genesee County Sheriff’s Deputies have arrested 27 year old Kyle Madden of Lake Street Road Leroy following an investigation into a larceny complaint in the Town of LeRoy.
The theft allegedly occurred on February 10th at a Lake Street Road residence.
Madden is now facing counts of Grand Larceny in the 4th degree, Identity Theft in the 3rd and Criminal Impersonation in the 2nd.
Madden was issued an appearance ticket for March 19th in Leroy Town Court.

Warsaw man indicted by Grand Jury for burglary in Alexander.
44 year old Gary Hensley of Burke Hill Road Warsaw is indicted for the crime of Burglary in the second degree, a Class C violent felony for allegedly unlawfully entering a building on Gilhooly Road in Alexander with the intention of committing a crime back on September 7th of last year.
Hensley is also charged with a Class E felony count of Grand Larceny for allegedly stealing one or more firearms, rifles or shotguns and with petit larceny for allegedly stealing a number of smaller items including a wooden jewelry box, jewelry, loose change, bedding and other various valuable keepsakes.
Hensley was initially arrested in October of last year at which time he was held without bail due to his prior felony arrests.

As a precautionary measure the VA facility in Batavia has closed their main entrance with all visitors and staff required to go through screening via the western entrance called the ramp.
The screening is a series of questions established by the CDC asking visitors and staff about such things as their exposure to others with illness, recent travel history and possible symptoms they may be experiencing.

A person being tested for coronavirus at Rochester General Hospital has been released.
The individual arrived at the emergency room earlier this week showing symptoms of the disease and was placed in quarantine.
The person was sent home yesterday and is now under voluntary quarantine.
There have still been no confirmed cases of coronavirus in Monroe County.

More cases of the coronavirus have been confirmed in New York State.
Health officials say 22 people are now being treated for the disease that’s continuing to spread rapidly.
So far, all of the cases are in downstate areas such as New York City, Long Island and Westchester County.
Governor Cuomo says the number of cases will grow as more testing for the virus is done.
He has activated the statewide Emergency Operation Center in Albany, where health experts will gather to closely monitor and respond to the coronavirus outbreak.

A former member of the Buffalo Sabres is in trouble with the law after being arrested in Nashville.
Police say Matthew Barnaby was taken into custody yesterday after allegedly choking a bouncer at a bar following an altercation.
Officers say Barnaby had the smell of alcohol on his breath and his speech was slurred when they arrived at the scene.
In a statement posted on Twitter, Barnaby said he believes he’ll be vindicated soon.
The 46-year-old played several seasons in Buffalo before being traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins.

The Buffalo Sabres push for a playoff spot is running out of steam following a fifth-straight loss.
Marcus Johansson and Jake McCabe both scored, but it wasn’t enough as the Sabres lost to the Pittsburgh Penguins four-to-two at KeyBank Center last night. Buffalo now has just 15 games left to try and end an eight-season playoff drought.
Their next game is set for Saturday when they visit the Philadelphia Flyers.

Medina Skate Society closing in on $250K Goal

Members of the Medina Skate Society with local supports at 2019 Rip into Summer Skate Jam. Photo credit: Joanne Zimmerman

Anonymous donors challenge community to raise remaining $50,000 of a matching Built-To-Play Skate Park Grant

Press Release:

MEDINA, NY 3/5/2020: The Village of Medina will be building a new public concrete skate park over the next year thanks to a pair of area donors who wish to remain anonymous. With their generous contributions the Medina Skate Society will have raised over $202,000 towards a new public skate park on S Main St. in Medina. Along with remaining anonymous our largest donors would like to give others in the community an opportunity to contribute to the project notably in the last month of fundraising towards a total matching grant of $250,000 from the Tony Hawk & Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundations.

The grant deadline is March 30th at which point every dollar that has been raised will be doubled and the Village of Medina could have half a million dollars to build a skate park. Medina will be building an awesome new skate park, and every dollar donated now until the end of March will decide just how awesome that skate park will be.

The unnamed benefactors along with the Medina Skate Society invasion an amazing, visually pleasing skate park that can be appreciated as a recreational playground for skateboarders, bikers, scooters and in-line skaters as well as an architectural work of art. The skate park is anticipated to be a new hub of activity for families, organizations and even radical skateboarding tourists from far and wide.

There are a number of ways to support the Medina Skate Park specifically before the grant funding deadline. Supporters can visit Sk8Medina.com and make a donation of any amount directly to the Medina Skate Society, however larger tax deductible donations should be made out to the Orleans Renaissance Group Inc. PO Box 543 Medina, New York 14103 specifying in the subject line “Skate Park Project”.

There are also several upcoming events including a Soup n’ Skate event at the current skate park at 1211 S Main St. Sunday March 15th from 2-4 (or at the First Presbyterian Church 522 Main St Medina in case of inclement weather). Skate Society members will be serving free soup, chili, hot cocoa and coffee to say thank you to supporters, update the community on the project and allow others the opportunity to donate. There will also be meat raffle tickets for $5 each and a drawing for five winners at 4 p.m. the same day.

Canalside Tattoo Company, 540 Main St Medina is also hosting a “Tattoo Flash Sale” the following Saturday March 21st from noon to 8 p.m. with 50% of every tattoo sale going directly towards the Medina Skate Park. Jaded Skate Shop based in Brockport has also donated a skate deck to be raffled off during the event.

Pre-sale tickets are also being sold for the 2nd Annual Cruise for Kick-Flips Motorcycle Run on July 25th 2020, again with the hopes of collecting as much funding as possible before the end of this month.

While there is a lot more work ahead in the design & construction phase of the project, it is safe to say the dream of a new skate park in Medina is becoming a reality.

Lastly, the Medina Skate Society will be requesting that the Village of Medina approve officially naming the new skate park the “Luke Nelson Memorial Skate Park” to honor the memory of Luke Nelson who passed away unexpectedly in April of 2017.

Luke’s passion to fix his beloved skate park has inspired family, friends and community members to love and appreciate their local skating scene and skate park. Now nearly three years since Luke expressed his intention to fix the skate park a new one is going to be built, something the Medina Skate Society wants to permanently recognize.

For skate park and fundraising related inquiries contact M.S.S. President Alex Feig at (585) 590-0602 or via email at feigalex@yahoo.com.

 

 

City of Batavia Fire Dept: Daylight Savings Time & Smoke Detectors

Press Release:

The City of Batavia Fire Department reminds residents about changing smoke detector batteries when Daylight Saving time begins on Sunday, March 8.

Chief Stefano Napolitano recommends “that as residents set their clocks ahead, that they test their smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.”

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) estimates that two-thirds of home fire deaths occur in homes with missing and/or damaged smoke detectors. Often times smoke detector fails to operate because the batteries were missing, disconnected, or dead.

Additionally, Napolitano recommends these additional safety tips:

• Install a working smoke detector on every level of the home, outside and or inside sleeping areas/bedrooms.
• Be sure to install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
• Test smoke detectors monthly using the test button on the unit.
• Make sure everyone in the home knows the sound of the smoke detector, and knows what to do when it sounds.
• Replace any smoke detector that is 10 years old or older.
• Replace the smoke detector immediately if it does not respond properly when tested.
• Batteries in traditional type smoke detectors, should be changed at least once a year, and/or in accordance with manufacturer’s recommendations.
• Develop a plan of escape. Make sure everyone in the household knows how to get out of every room and how to evacuate in under two-minutes. They should also know where to meet, once they are out of the house.
• Try to avoid placing a smoke detector near a bathroom, heating appliance windows, or ceiling fans.

“Also as a reminder if you reside in the City of Batavia and you do not have a working smoke detector or a replacement battery, the City of Batavia Fire Department will provide one smoke detector or batteries to you at no cost. Additionally, if you need assistance in testing, inspecting or changing your batteries please call 585-345-6375. A time will be set and members of the fire department will come to your residence and install a smoke detector, replace batteries and inspect and test the units in your home,” according to Chief Napolitano.

Morning News Briefing

The Genesee County Sheriff’s Office reports the arrest of 29 year old Jacob Thuman of Chestnut street Akron following investigation into a disturbance in the Town of Darien.
Thuman was taken into custody by deputies yesterday evening after he allegedly pushed another individual in the presence of a child.
Thuman is now facing counts of second degree Harassment and Endangering the Welfare of a Child.
He is expected to reappear in Darien Town Court on March 17th.

An Oakfield woman busted for shoplifting with drugs in Batavia.
22 year old Heidi Ettinger of Coe Ave was apprehended by Genesee County Sheriff’s Deputies on counts of Petit Larceny and Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance outside the Target in Batavia yesterday afternoon.
Ettinger was accused of stealing property from the store and was allegedly found in possession of drugs.
She was released with an appearance ticket for March 12th in Batavia Town Court.

The Genesee County Economic Development Center Board of Directors will consider final resolutions for two Batavia Downtown Revitalization Initiative, also known as (DRI) strategic projects at the GCEDC’s board meeting today.
The Ellicott Station and Ellicott Place projects would add 65 new apartments that support Genesee County’s EDGE economic development strategy for housing to support the growth of Genesee County’s businesses and communities.
The $22.5 million mixed-use brownfield redevelopment project by Savarino Companies is expected to include adaptive reuse and new construction across blighted property on Ellicott St as well as creating 20 additional jobs to Downtown Batavia’s business community.

Test results on six Western New York residents have come back negative for coronavirus.
Officials were concerned after they showed symptoms of the illness following a return from Italy.
Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz says any resident who travels to an area with a high number of confirmed coronavirus cases will be quarantined for 14 days when they get home, even if they’re healthy.
Plans are also in the works to allow the county public health lab to do its own coronavirus testing.

The Buffalo Sabres hope a return to home ice will help end a four-game losing streak.
They’re hosting the Pittsburgh Penguins at KeyBank Center tonight.
With just 16 games left in their season, the Sabres are running out of time to try and secure a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
Faceoff for tonight’s game is set for 7 p.m.

Six confirmed Cases of COVID 19 in NYS

Gov. Andrew Cuomo

Governor Andrew Cuomo says that eight hospital workers are being tested in Westchester County, following the latest confirmed cases of coronavirus. The workers are all employees of New York Presbyterian-Lawrence Hospital in Bronxville, where a 50-year-old New Rochelle man first received treatment, before he was diagnosed and transferred to a Manhattan hospital. That man’s son is a student at Yeshiva University in New York City, where classes have been cancelled through Friday. The New Rochelle man’s wife, daughter, and neighbor have all tested positive for COVID-19 as well, and they’re being kept in isolation. This makes six confirmed cases of coronavirus in New York State.

GCEDC BOARD TO CONSIDER $22.5 MILLION BROWNFIELD REDEVELOPMENT AND $3.1 MILLION DOWNTOWN BATAVIA PROJECTS

Press Release:

BATAVIA, NY – The Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) board of directors will consider final resolutions for two Batavia Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI) strategic projects at the GCEDC’s March 5, 2020 board meeting.

The Ellicott Station and Ellicott Place projects would add 65 new apartments that support Genesee County’s EDGE economic development strategy for housing to support the growth of Genesee County’s businesses and communities.

Ellicott Station is a $22.5 million mixed-use brownfield redevelopment project by Savarino Companies that includes adaptive re-use and new construction at 40, 50, 56 Ellicott St., a blighted property in a key gateway entrance to downtown Batavia, and the creation of 20 additional jobs to downtown Batavia’s business community.

Considerable brownfield remediation, site improvements, and construction is proposed, with the project proposing a 5-story apartment building with 55 new modern workforce housing units, along with a brewery, restaurant/beer garden, and preparation for additional development at the 3.31-acre campus.

Ellicott Station is requesting approximately $3.6 million in economic incentives, with a $2,105,792 property tax exemption, a $790,512 sales tax exemption, and a $180,792 mortgage tax exemption. Revenues from the project will also contribute to the Batavia Pathway to Prosperity brownfield redevelopment fund.

Ellicott Place is a $3.1 million redevelopment of 45-47 Ellicott St. by V.J. Gautieri Constructors that includes the creation of and access to residential and commercial spaces in downtown Batavia.

The project will construct 10 second-floor apartments at the existing facility, along with the development of first-floor storefronts and building-wide façade improvements. The redevelopment of Ellicott Place is estimated to create nine additional jobs to downtown Batavia’s business community.

Ellicott Place is requesting approximately $130,000 in economic incentives, with a $110,400 sales tax exemption and a $20,000 mortgage tax exemption.

Ellicott Station and Ellicott Place were among eight transformational investments announced by Gov. Andrew Cuomo as enabling the Batavia DRI’s strategy to drive new, mixed-use development, improved access to local healthcare, and transform public spaces for community use.

Final resolutions are being considered after public hearings were held for both projects on March 3.

Morning News Briefing

Batavia Police have arrested and charged 24 year old Daniel Jon Lewis in connection with a January 25 incident involving a police chase of a Spectrum work truck.
Lewis is accused of causing over 25-thousand dollars of damage in the stolen work truck that he allegedly plowed through residential back yards, fences, parked cars and a home to evade police.
Lewis is already a suspect in several crimes from January as he was out of jail while awaiting sentencing on a prior conviction.
In his most recent charges Lewis is facing seven counts of Criminal Mischief, counts of Unlawful Fleeing a Police Officer in a Motor Vehicle, Reckless Driving, Leaving the Scene of a Property Damage Accident, Driving on a Sidewalk, along with various traffic infractions.
Lewis was being held in the Genesee County Jail on unrelated charges before he was arrested for the incident yesterday.

Rochester resident arrested for dealing crack in Batavia.
Genesee County Sheriff’s Deputies took 27 year old Jerome Edmonds into custody on a Genesee County Court Indictment Warrant on Friday following an investigation into the sale of crack cocaine in the City.
Edmonds was charged with class B felony counts of Criminal Sale and Possession of a Controlled Substance and after being arraigned was released on his own recognizance.

A North Lyon Street man is jailed for threats of violence and arson.
City Police report the arrest of 38 year old John Taggert on a count of second degree Harassment following a domestic incident at a North Lyon Street address late last Tuesday night.
Taggert was accused of threatening to kill another person and to burn down their house in the incident.
He was ordered to be held in the Genesee County Jail pending his arraignment and is expected to reappear in Batavia City Court this afternoon.

To help better protect the public from the transmission of disease during food handling, the Board of Health may soon adopt a new policy that will require establishments and events providing anything prepared foods to have at least one supervisor or server on hand who has completed a certified food safety course.
County Health Department Director Paul Petit…

The 60 to 90-minute course costs from $10 to $15 and will provide the person taking the course with information on the safe preparation, storage, and handling of food.

Two Western New York families who recently traveled to Italy are being tested for the coronavirus.
The Buffalo News reports six of the 12 individuals are showing symptoms of the illness that has killed thousands of people around the world.
There’s no word yet on when test results will be back from a state lab in Albany.
Erie County officials are expected to release more information during a news conference later this morning.

GCEDC BOARD TO CONSIDER APPLICATIONS FOR COMMUNITY SOLAR PROJECTS IN BATAVIA AND PEMBROKE

Press Release:

BATAVIA, NY – The Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) board of directors will consider final resolutions for five community solar projects at the GCEDC’s March 5, 2020 board meeting.

Borrego Solar is investing approximately $22 million across the five projects, which would generate 22 megawatts of energy for residential and commercial subscribers. The five projects are estimated to generate $2,092,503 in future revenues to the municipalities and schools where the projects are located.

In the town of Batavia, Borrego Solar has submitted applications for assistance for three solar farms that would be located at 5230 Batavia-Stafford Townline Road (Elba Central Schools), 3104 West Main Street Road (Pembroke Central Schools) and 3232 West Main Street Road (Pembroke Central Schools).

If approved, the proposed PILOTs for the three town of Batavia projects are estimated to generate $390,041 in revenues to Genesee County, $433,033 in revenues to the Pembroke Central Schools, $318,292 in revenues to the Elba Central Schools over 15 years.

In the town of Pembroke, Borrego Solar has submitted applications for assistance for two solar farms that would be located at 241 Knapp Road East (Akron Central Schools) and 241 Knapp Road West (Akron Central Schools).

If approved, the proposed PILOTs for the two town of Pembroke projects are estimated to generate $364,711 in revenues to Genesee County and $586,427 in revenues to the Akron Central Schools.

The GCEDC board’s considerations follows public hearings on Feb. 28 in Pembroke and March 2 in Batavia.

LeRoy Women of the Moose host Annual Cake Walk

Lindsey Dailey, School Counselor, Catherine Campbell, Club recorder and Martha Bailey, Chair Person. The Men’s Fashion show was chaired by Sharyll Hume.

Press Release:

The LeRoy Women of the Moose Chapter 370 held their annual Cake Walk and raised money to purchase personal care items for Knights Closet at LeRoy High School. This fun event involves dessert donations, a DJ, and a musical chair set up to win a dessert. Along with a 50/50 raffle and basket raffle, the proceeds were used to by necessary toiletry items for students that may not have access to them at home. Some students use the school facilities to get ready for the day. Knights closet is open to all students and students that need extra support may contact Lindsey Dailey for a private meeting. They gladly accept donations of personal care items and gently used clothing.

After the desserts were all won, it was time for the Men’s Fashion Show. Our Moose men are good sports as they dress up and parade around to see who will win.

Morning News Briefing

A Medina man is being held without bail in Genesee County after deputies say he was found in possession of crack cocaine during his arrest on a sealed indictment warrant out of Orleans County Court.
30 year old Akeem Gibson of Frank Street Medina was taken into custody on a warrant for drug sales and possession by Genesee County Sheriff’s Deputies on Sunday following investigation by the Orleans County Major Felony Crime Task Force into the distribution of crack cocaine in the Village of Albion.
Gibson was arraigned in Orleans County Court on 2 counts each of Criminal Sale and Criminal Possession of a Controlled a Substance and was then turned over to the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office where he was additionally arraigned in Batavia City Court on Class B and C level felonies for drug possession.
Gibson was ordered to be held without bail by Judge Durin Rogers until he appears back in Genesee County Court for further proceedings.
Gison is expected back in Orleans County Court to face additonal felony charges while the investigation continues with further charges and arrests pending.

Bethany man arrested for an unwanted illumination.
The Genesee County Sheriff’s Office reports the arrest of 51 year old John Clark of Linden Road following investigation into a harassment complaint in Bethany late last night.
Deputies say Clark had been shining a light in a victim’s window repeatedly over a prolonged period of time.
He was charged with Harassment and issued an appearance ticket for March 17th in Bethany Town Court.

Former Republican Congressman Chris Collins is going to be a free man for a few more weeks.
He was supposed to report to federal prison on March 17th, but that’s been pushed back until April 21st at the request of his lawyers.
The Buffalo News reports the delay is connected to the Federal Bureau of Prisons still deciding where Collins will serve his 26-month sentence.
Collins stepped down from his post representing the 27th Congressional District last year after pleading guilty to federal insider trading charges.
A special election to fill the seat is being held April 28th.

The state Legislature has passed a bill allowing 40-million dollars to be used in the fight against coronavirus.
Governor Cuomo requested the funding just last week.
The money will go towards providing health departments with the necessary funding to buy equipment, hire staff and gather any additional resources.
The bill now goes to the governor’s desk, but there’s no word on when he may sign it.

The Buffalo Sabres will be looking to gain ground in the Eastern Conference playoff standings tonight.
They’ll be visiting the Winnipeg Jets at Bell MTS Arena.
Right now, the Sabres are 12 points behind the Toronto Maple Leafs for third place in the Atlantic Division with 17 games to play.
Faceoff for tonight’s contest is set for 8 p.m.

Morning News Briefing

Genesee County Manager Jay Gsell announced his plan to retire in August of this year while also breaking news that Assistant County Manager Matthew Landers has been appointed to succeed him later this summer.
Gsell made the announcement at the Legislature meeting on February 26th after serving twenty-seven years at the post and working forty-five years in government.
Gsell also shared details of the succession plan to promote Assistant County Manager Matthew Landers to the position.
Landers brings 16 years of municipal experience serving as deputy county treasurer beginning in 2004, with a stint as director of real property tax services before being appointed as assistant county manager in 2014.
Matt and his wife, Melissa, are lifelong Genesee County residents.

Robbery in Batavia ends in arrest for a Tracy Ave woman.
30 year old Nateeka Gibson was taken into custody on counts of Robbery and Harassment by City Police following investigation into an incident at a lower apartment of a Washington Ave address on February 15th.
After being arraigned on the charges she was released on her own recognizance and is expected back in Batavia City Court at a later date.

LeRoy traffic stop leads to drug charges for an Allegany County man.
34 year old Eric Hess of Little Genesee is facing counts of Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance, Unlawful Possession of Marijuana and Tampering with Physical Evidence after he was subject as a passenger to a traffic on Perry Road in LeRoy.
Hess was accused of possessing and attempting to destroy pot and powder cocaine after he was detained.

A ban on single-use plastic bags is now in effect across New York.
That means the next time you go to the store, you’ll have to bring a reusable bag or face a five-cent charge for using a paper bag.
The state DEC says the change will be better for the environment, since most of the 23-billion plastic bags used each year often end up littering the streets or posing a threat to wildlife.
Businesses won’t be fined for giving plastic bags to their customers until April 1st.

The first case of coronavirus has been confirmed in New York State.
Governor Cuomo says the infected person is a woman in her 30s who recently traveled to Iran.
That country is one of several around the globe where the disease has spread. The woman is currently isolated in her home.
The governor says there is no need for people to be anxious and that the risk of getting coronavirus remains low.

New York State has been given the green light by the Food and Drug Administration to use its own tests for coronavirus.
They’ll be conducted at the Wadsworth Laboratory in Albany instead of having to be sent to the Centers for Disease Control in Washington, D.C.
Officials say that should lower the amount of time it takes to get test results back.
Last week, Governor Cuomo called for a 40-million-dollar emergency appropriation to provide health departments with the necessary money to buy equipment, hire staff and gather any additional resources.

Genesee County Manager Jay Gsell Announces Retirement and Succession Plan

Press Release:

At the February 26th Legislature meeting, County Manager Jay Gsell announced his plan to retire as of August 14, 2020. He will have twenty-seven years as county manager and a total of forty-five years working in government. Upon earning his bachelor’s degree from the College of William and Mary he immediately went on to American University earning his Master of Public Administration degree. In the late 1970’s and through the 1980’s he served as assistant or city manager in the Cities of Trenton, Norton Shores, Eau Claire, Winchester, Cumberland and Marshalltown. In 1993, after rising to the top of 70 applicants from a national search, Jay was appointed county manager by the Genesee County Legislature.

According to Legislature Chair Rochelle Stein he has completely immersed himself in Genesee County, a place he and his wife, Ann Marie call home. “Jay wears many hats; county manager and budget officer, family-man, member (and past president) of Rotary, United Way board member and chair of the county’s comprehensive plan committee to name a few” said Stein.

In addition to announcing his retirement date, Gsell shared details of the succession plan which includes Assistant County Manager Matthew Landers appointment to the positon. The Legislature has met with Matt and look forward to a seamless transition. Mr. Landers brings nearly ten years of municipal experience beginning with a three year stint as director of real property tax services before a promotion to deputy treasurer and in 2014 assistant county manager. Matt and wife, Melissa are lifelong Genesee County residents. He attended The College at Brockport where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Accounting and Master of Public Administration. He’s an active member of Kiwanis Club, Leadership Genesee graduate and is a certified public accountant. Matt can been seen coaching daughter Katie’s softball team or working on the fields at Lyons Park or pitching to son, Ben at batting practice. “We are well positioned to maintain quality administration of our county and look forward to promoting home-grown Matt Landers to county manager” said Shelley Stein.

Weekend News Briefing

Genesee County Manager Jay Gsell has announced his plan to retire as of August 14, 2020 with arrangements for a streamlined transition for his successor.
Gsell broke the news at the February 26th Legislature meeting, that he will ending his twenty-seven year career as county manager with a total of forty-five years working in government.
Gsell was appointed county manager by the Genesee County Legislature in 1993, after rising to the top of 70 applicants from a national search.
In addition to announcing his retirement date, Gsell shared details of the succession plan which includes Assistant County Manager Matthew Landers appointment to the positon.
The Legislature has met with Matt and look forward to a seamless transition.

The Diocese of Buffalo has filed for bankruptcy following a recent wave of child sex abuse lawsuits brought against the Catholic Church.
The religious institution made the announcement Friday following the Rochester Diocese bankruptcy filing in September.
Since mid-August, hundreds of child sex abuse lawsuits have been brought against the Diocese of Buffalo in the aftermath of New York’s Child Victims Act which allows survivors of childhood sexual abuse to seek justice now regardless of any previous statute of limitations.
A bankruptcy judge is said to be overseeing a division of Buffalo’s Diocese’s assets to ensure a fair outcome to all survivors who timely file claims in the bankruptcy.

LeRoy resident arrested for Criminal Impersonation after spending thousands online shopping.
Genesee County Sheriff’s Deputies report the arrest of 27 year old Kyle Madden of Lake Street Road LeRoy on counts of Grand Larceny, Identity Theft and Criminal Impersonation following investigation into a stolen credit card complaint.
Madden was accused of stealing another person’s credit card information and then making more than $3,000 in purchases online.
Madden was arraigned in LeRoy Town Court and released with an appearance ticket.

LeRoy woman found asleep behind the wheel is busted for DWI in Batavia.
30 year old Heather MacPherson of Gully Road LeRoy was arrested and charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08% or more after officers responded to a Jackson Street address early Sunday morning to find her sleeping behind the wheel of a vehicle.
MacPherson was released with appearance tickets for City Court on March 4th.

The Genesee County Sheriff’s Office, City of Batavia and Village of LeRoy Police Departments will participate in a special enforcement effort to crackdown on impaired driving over the St. Patrick’s Day Weekend.
The statewide STOP-DWI Crackdown efforts start on March 13th and will end on March 18th.
State, County and municipal law enforcement agencies across the state will be out in force.

GCASA’s Prevention Department Committed to Keeping Communities Drug- and Alcohol-Free

GCASA PREVENTION TEAM: Assistant Director of Prevention Sherri Bensley (middle) is surrounded by her team at GCASA, from left, Diana Fulcomer, Communications & Development Director Shannon Ford, Christen Ferraro, Carol Nicometo, Kristen Gombos, Diane Klos, Sheila Harding and Elizabeth Novak. Submitted photo.

Press Release:

By Mike Pettinella
GCASA Publicist

If, as Ben Franklin so wisely stated, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” then the Prevention Department at Genesee/Orleans Council on Alcoholism and Substance Abuse is a heavyweight in the effort to keep young and old alike from the ever-present dangers of alcohol and drugs.

“We offer cradle to grave services, from in-school programs to moms who are pregnant to seniors dealing with prescription drug management,” said Sherri Bensley, GCASA’s assistant director of prevention. “Our philosophy is based on prevention science – programs that are research-based, data-drive and outcome-focused.”

Bensley, a Medina resident with 15 years of prevention education experience under her belt, outlined the various services provided by the GCASA Prevention team, a group of seven educators and a secretary that serves Genesee and Orleans counties.

And she is quick to express her appreciation for the employees she supervises.

“Our collaboration is fantastic,” she said. “Really, it’s the best prevention staff in the world. They are passionate about their work and are good at what they do.”

And that dedication is fueled by the commitment that Bensley has made as a GCASA employee — starting as a prevention educator in Orleans County, coordinator of the highly-successful Responsible Server Training and Children of Addiction programs, and assistant director for two years in Orleans before being promoted to her current position.

“I’m motivated by the opportunity to help a young person or family stay clear of the problems caused by alcohol, tobacco and drug use and, beyond that, playing a role – whether big or small – in seeing people break free from substance use or addiction,” she said.

Toward that end, Bensley pointed to around a dozen different programs that GCASA offers.

Too Good for Drugs and Too Good for Violence target elementary and middle school pupils; SPORT, a one-on-one classroom initiative, focuses upon high school students’ overall wellness.

Teen Intervene is a fee-based program that assists school teachers and administrators in getting youth back on track after problems arise due to alcohol and drug use, and Active Parenting Now and Active Parenting for Teens help parents cope and manage difficult situations.

Other Prevention programs include the following:

— Accountability Circles: Based on restorative justice principles, this program serves youth who are ticketed for underage drinking or break their school’s code of conduct. They provide education regarding the dangers of drinking and drug use, as well as allow participants to hear community members explain how they are affected by underage substance use.

— Children of Addictions Support Group: A free program for children ages 6-16 whose lives have been hindered by a family member’s or caretaker’s use of alcohol or other drugs. Participants attend sessions over six weeks aimed to helping them develop healthy coping skills and understand the disease of addiction

— DWI Victim Impact Panel: Open to anyone convicted of DWI offenses in Genesee, Orleans and Wyoming counties, fee-for-service VIP sessions feature volunteer speakers who address the consequences of what happens when people drink alcohol and get behind the wheel of a motor vehicle.

— Responsible Server Training: This is a three-hour fee-for-service class, certified by the New York State Liquor Authority that educates employees of bars, restaurants, supermarkets, convenience stores, liquor stores and other establishments that sell or serve alcoholic beverages.

“We have been offering this for quite some time and have trained hundreds of employees all across the state,” Bensley said. “Owners of establishments that sell or serve alcohol understand the severity of serving to a minor or serving someone who is visibly intoxicated.”

GCASA’s Prevention staff also promotes several “environmental strategies” that are designed to reach the community as a whole, instead of centering upon individuals. These include the Underage Drinking Tipline (1-800-851-1932), Project Sticker Shock (putting warning labels on cases of beer, for example) and placing Red Ribbon Week literature in schools and banners along city streets.

Currently, GCASA has contracts with seven schools – Batavia, Byron-Bergen, Oakfield-Alabama, Notre Dame/St. Joseph’s, Le Roy, Medina and Lyndonville – and “are always looking to join forces with more schools,” Bensley said.

Regardless of its contract status, GCASA conducts Prevention Needs Assessment surveys in all Genesee County schools and in four Orleans County schools every two years in an attempt to gauge the incidence and prevalence of alcohol, drug and tobacco use among students.

“The PNA survey is an evidence-based endeavor, and we keep track of the results for several years,” Bensley explained. “We also encourage feedback and set up focus groups as required by the state Office of Addiction Services and Supports.

GCASA’s Prevention department has expanded its services in recent years to deal with the heroin epidemic, starting a free opioid overdose prevention training to help people learn to recognize signs of an opioid overdose, understand steps to be taken to prevent death and learn how to administer naloxone (NARCAN training) to reverse an opioid overdose.

While Bensley touts her staff’s commitment as the key to numerous success stories, she said one of the biggest challenges is making the public aware that “we’re out there – that we’re on the second floor (of the GCASA campus at 430 East Main St.)” as well as having a distinct presence at the Albion office, in several school districts and throughout the community.

“That, along with funding and parental involvement, is one of the hardest hurdles,” she said. “Educating parents is sometimes very difficult, because they’re busy. But the most dangerous thing is when a parent says, ‘Not my kid.’ For every parent who says that, there’s a kid who is struggling.”

For more information about GCASA’s Prevention services, contact Bensley at 585-331-8742 or send an email to sbensley@gcasa.org.

Morning News Briefing

Officials from Batavia Downs Gaming and Western OTB formally closed the books on a record-breaking 2019. Revenues distributed to member municipalities totaled over $3.6 million a new high.
Distributions were given in the fourth quarter for the first time since 1999. Batavia Downs Gaming contributed over $31.3 million to State Education via the New York State Lottery in 2019 setting a new record and beating 2018’s number by $1.6 million.

Batavia Police bust a LeRoy woman for DWI after being found asleep behind the wheel.
30 year old Heather K. MacPherson of Gully Road LeRoy was arrested and charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08% or more after officers responded to a Jackson Street address early Sunday morning to find her sleeping behind the wheel of a vehicle.
MacPherson was released with appearance tickets for City Court on March 4th.

Walmart employee arrested for stealing out of the cash register.
Genesee County Sheriff’s Deputies took 20 year old Michael Busch of Elm Street Batavia into custody last night following a complaint from the Walmart in Batavia.
While working as a cashier at the department store Busch allegedly stole a total of $440 from the registers over the past month.
He was given an appearance ticket to Batavia Town Court on March 12th.

A ban on single-use plastic bags is set to go into effect statewide on Sunday.
That means retailers will no longer offer them to customers and can charge a five-cent fee for using a paper bag.
Plastic bags can still be used to carry items like uncooked meat, takeout orders and prescriptions.
People are being urged to bring their own reusable bags when they head out to shop, but are reminded that stores aren’t required to have them available.
The state DEC says the new ban will cut down on litter, since an estimated 23-billion plastic bags are used each year.

New York’s already bad flu season has already become one for the record books.
Over 131-thousand confirmed cases of the virus have been confirmed this season, the highest number since the state started tracking that data in 1998.
Officials say that number will continue to grow since flu season typically doesn’t end until May.
The one bit of good news is the number of flu cases has dropped in recent weeks.
Those numbers are down 26-percent since February 8th.

School Closings for today include:
Attica Central School, Pavilion Central, Perry Central, Warsaw Central School District and Wyoming Central Schools are all closed today Friday February 28th

The Travel advisory has also been lifted for Wyoming County this morning.

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Batavia brought in the New Year with fireworks last night at 9p at Batavia Downs.  The time was moved up to avoid potential hazards due to the high winds that arrived after midnight, the original time of the fireworks.  No reports of major damage today due to the high winds but be aware of tree limbs and downed power lines in your area.

A grand jury has indicted a man who was arrested over the summer at the August 10th Jason Aldean concert at Darien Lake.  Robert Maharrey was indicted for disorderly conduct, multiple counts of harassment for striking a female patron in the face, 2nd degree assault a class D violent felony for allegedly striking a sheriff’s deputy, assaulting a police officer a class C violent felony when he spit and struck another deputy assisting in the arrest.

Friday evening Livingston County Sheriffs were in the middle of the state wide stop DWI effort, when deputies pulled a vehicle over on 390 for speeding.  Upon further investigation a 27 year old Geneseo man Patrick Dunn was charged with DWI.  Dunn’s BAC was .25% and was further charged with felony DWI from a previous 2015 conviction.  Dunn is now being held on 1,5k bail or 3k bond and remanded to the custody of the sheriff.

Yesterday afternoon, Genesee County Sheriffs made a traffic stop in Oakfield on Lewiston road when a Rochester man, 20 year old Damian Schoonmaker of Smith Street was found to be in possession of marijuana in his 2000 Buick LeSabre.  He was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and is scheduled to appear in Oakfield town court 1/21

A motor vehicle accident yesterday in Elba led to a lane closure around 3:30p.  Two vehicle collided at Oak orchard and Lockport roads in Elba.  Elba fire police and 2 ambulance responded along with Elba Fire dept.

New Yorkers are seeing a number of new state laws in the New Year.  Among them, a law that requires diaper changing tables in all new public men’s and women’s restrooms.

Other changes include a requirement that health insurance companies give male patients free prostate cancer screenings and that residents be allowed to return unused prescription meds to pharmacies for free.

Many homeowners will enjoy an increase in property tax rebates, of an average of more than five-hundred dollars.

There’s the hike in the minimum wage. In our area, the minimum wage goes to eleven-dollars-and-ten-cents.



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