Morning News Brief

Written by on June 16, 2021

New York’s COVID-19 mandates are lifted, effective immediately. As of Tuesday, the 70% threshold was reached, meaning cleaning and disinfection, social distancing, health screenings, and contract tracing will be lifted for retail, food services, offices, gyms, amusement parks, barbershops and hair salons. There will be exceptions to the state’s rollback, including federal guidelines that stay in place: COVID-19 health protocols will still be in place for large-scale event venues, school’s pre-k to 12th grade, public transit, homeless shelters, correctional facilities, nursing homes, and health care facilities. Unvaccinated people would still be required to keep a social distance of six-feet and wear a face mask.

Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge will offer for bid 167 acres of grassland hay in three different fields ranging in size from 49 to 60 acres. The Refuge annually provides a total of 1,100 acres of grassland habitat for migratory birds and resident wildlife. Active management of these grasslands is necessary to provide the highest quality nesting and migration habitat. Hay will be allocated on a highest bid per field basis for each field. Sealed bids will be accepted until close-of-business (COB) on Friday, July 2. An official Bid Sheet, available from the Refuge headquarters, is required to make a bid.

Larger fires and especially barn fires, can be problematic. That was the annoying case for Le Roy firefighters Tuesday. Earlier this week they spent hours dowsing a barn fire on Warsaw Road. But fires are unpredictable and Tuesday the barn rubble reignited. Le Roy firefighters responded again and poured more water on the embers. They cleared the scene right around 2 p.m.

Here’s a traffic alert for the City of Batavia… North Spruce Street (East Ave. to North St.) and Farwell Drive (North Spruce St. to Trumbull Pkwy.) will be closed today to all through traffic. The closure is for the installation of storm water facilities. Residents and property owners within the closure may experience limited or delayed access to and from their residence. All through motorists are asked to seek an alternate route.

U.S. Majority Leader Charles Schumer and Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of NY joined Senate colleagues in calling for legislation to increase penalties for automated and illegal phone calls. The Deter Obnoxious, Nefarious, and Outrageous Telephone Call Act…or the DO NOT Call Act would increase penalties for individuals and companies intentionally preying on consumers through unsolicited and illegal robocalls. According to YouMail, nearly 4.5 billion robocalls targeted Americans in April 2021. Of those calls, 229 million took place in New York State, making it the fifth most-called state in the nation. The Office of the New York Attorney General says consumers lose approximately $40 billion a year through telemarketing fraud.

Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced the launch of the New York Power Authority and Canal Corporation’s “On the Canals” excursions, a free, recreational program offering unique opportunities to experience the outdoors on the New York State Canal system and the adjoining Empire State Trail. As part of Governor Cuomo’s Reimagine the Canals initiative, “On the Canals” excursions will highlight six, free outdoor excursions in the five canalside communities of Medina, Macedon, Waterloo, Savannah, and Amsterdam in summer 2021. The program will also support and promote local businesses through a comprehensive marketing effort, increasing visitation to villages, towns, and cities along the Canal system.

Kodak’s CEO will be required to testify as part of the Office of the New York State Attorney General’s investigation into potential insider trading. Attorney General Letitia James says a State Supreme Court order will require the CEO to testify in October, and the company will also have to turn over documents to the A.G.’s office.

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