Morning News Briefing
Written by Michael Baldwin on November 25, 2020
If you drink, then drive…expect a sad and expensive holiday. The Genesee County STOP-DWI Coordinator says the County Sheriff’s Office and the City of Batavia Police Department are participating in the statewide enforcement effort to crackdown on impaired driving. The statewide efforts begin now and will end on Sunday. Research shows that high-visibility enforcement can reduce impaired driving fatalities by as much as 20 percent. Sobriety checkpoints play a key part in raising awareness about the problem. New York State Police, County Sheriff and municipal law enforcement agencies across the state will be out in force. Don’t say you were warned…again.
Genesee County health officials report 64 new COVID-19 cases. Those newly infected live in Alabama, Alexander, Batavia, Bergen, Bethany, Byron, Darien, Elba, Le Roy, Oakfield, Pavilion, Pembroke and Stafford. Thirteen of the current positive individuals are hospitalized. Genesee County also reports another death. Officials said the victim was under the age of 65. Orleans County reports five new cases and Wyoming County reports 12 new cases.
Following the designation of Monroe County’s new orange zone, Strong Memorial and Highland Hospital are enacting zero-visitation policies. UR Medicine says both hospitals fall in the orange zone, and the decision is being made to help flatten the local COVID-19 curve. Highland Hospital has already suspended visitation, while Strong Memorial’s restrictions will go into effect today at 8 p.m. There are some exceptions to the zero-visitor policies. These include cases involving pediatric patients, patients in labor or postpartum, end of life circumstances and instances involving patients living with cognitive issues.
The Genesee County Health Department is alerting the public to possible COVID-19 exposures at the Le Roy Moose Lodge and the Flying J Travel Center in Pembroke. Contact tracing is in progress; however unidentified individuals may have unknowingly been in contact with the positive cases. For the Le Roy Moose Lodge, possible infections occurred on Monday, Nov. 16th between the hours of 8 and 10 p.m., Friday, Nov. 20th between the hour of 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. and Saturday, Nov. 21st between the hours of 4 and 7 p.m. At the Flying J Travel Center – Tuesday, Nov 17th between the hours of 3 and 10 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 18th between the hours of 3 and 11 p.m. and Thursday, Nov. 19th between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Health officials say if you were at the Le Roy Moose Lodge or the Flying J Travel Center on those dates and times, you should monitor for symptoms for 14 days.
A group of state lawmakers representing the Southern Tier, Finger Lakes, and Western New York are calling on Governor Andrew Cuomo to veto legislation that, if enacted, would significantly expand New York’s regulatory process governing stream-related projects. The bill was approved by both houses of the Legislature earlier this year. It was delivered to the governor for final action late last week. If enacted, opponents said the legislation would force the reclassification of thousands of New York State streams and result in a more time-consuming, costly, overregulated, and impractical state-level permitting process for stream-related projects involving flood repair and mitigation, bridge and culvert maintenance, farmland protection, and other public works priorities.
Deal with the pandemic. That’s what New Yorkers told a Siena Poll they want the governor and the state Legislature to focus on in the new year. Nearly half of respondents pointed to the pandemic as their top priority, and 60 percent included it in their top two. A strong majority — regardless of party, region, race, age, religion, gender, or even who they supported in the presidential election — said if the FDA approves a COVID-19 vaccine, they will definitely, or at least probably, get it. According to the poll, Gov. Cuomo’s favorability rating has slipped slightly, but still remains highly positive — as does his handling of the pandemic.