Morning News Brief
Written by Michael Baldwin on April 7, 2021
Governor Andrew Cuomo and legislative leaders have announced an agreement on the New York State Budget. The final budget accomplishes major legislative priorities, including a record $29.5 billion in aid to schools; $29 billion in public and private green economy investments; Legalizing mobile sports betting; and Implementing comprehensive nursing home reforms. In combination with more than $12 billion in federal budget relief, New Yorkers will get green infrastructure spending. Senate Minority Leader Robert Ortt said provisions like unemployment for undocumented workers are “out of whack.” The minority leader also said the budget will only contribute to people further leaving the state.
State lawmakers have renewed their call for Gov. Andrew Cuomo to allow all schools to return to full-time, in-person classroom instruction. The move has also been supported by area school superintendents. The lawmakers said that the only thing still standing in the way of the return to in-person learning for all students is a Cuomo executive order requiring a minimum distance of 6 feet between students in classrooms. In a joint statement, the area legislators said, “It is time for students to go back to school. The Cuomo administration should immediately issue revised guidance to allow all schools to return to full-time, in-person classroom instruction. It is a critical action that needs to move forward for the health and well-being of all of our students.”
Genesee County reports 27 more COVID-19 cases. Nine of the current positive individuals are hospitalized. Two of the new positive individuals are inmates at the Genesee County Jail. Officials in Orleans County report 11 new cases while Wyoming County reports just two new cases.
The final three candidates for the Byron-Bergen superintendents job will interview today. The finalists are Patrick McGee who is Byron-Bergen’s Junior-Senior High School principal; Dr. Jennifer Sinsebox, executive director of curriculum and data management at Wheatland-Chili Central School; and Tracy Marchionda. assistant superintendent for the Geneva City School District. Additional final interviews are scheduled for next week as well. The job begins July 1st.
State University of New York Chancellor Jim Malatras has announced a program specifically designed to begin vaccinating SUNY residential students prior the end of the spring semester. SUNY has secured its first reserved shipment of Johnson & Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 vaccine to inoculate SUNY residential students prior to their departure for summer break. Because the J&J vaccine requires just one dose, tens of thousands of on-campus students scheduled to finish the semester in early May can get their one shot without having to wait weeks for a second dose before going home.
NY Congressman Tom Reed continues to lay low. The Corning Republican had often appeared on cable TV shows and his staff routinely sent out press releases. Reed also had stopped, at least for now, his regular town hall sessions with his constituents. Reed hasn’t posted anything on Facebook since March 22 when he announced his public meetings would be rescheduled. On March 21, the congressman issued a press releases saying he wouldn’t be running for any public office in the future and apologized after being accused of sexual harassment involving a female lobbyist. Reed said he entered treatment in 2017, saying he was powerless over alcohol.
RG&E is marking the completion of a major effort to help upgrade its systems. For a decade, the company has been working through its Rochester Area Reliability Project. The $389 million effort aims to boost local electric transmission services. The new substation was one element of the project, which also included upgrades to existing substations and the installation of more than 27 miles of new or rebuilt transmission lines.