COVID-19

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The re-opening of schools in September is garnering increased attention, and Congressman Brian Higgins weighed in on the issue yesterday.

File Photo For Illustration Purposes Only / WBFO News

The U.S. Roman Catholic Church, including some parishes in the Buffalo diocese, used a special and unprecedented exemption from federal rules to amass at least $1.4 billion in taxpayer-backed coronavirus aid.

Kevin P. Coughlin / (Office of Gov. Andrew Cuomo)

A New York state report released this week found that Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s controversial executive order, which placed COVID-19 hospital patients into nursing homes, was not to blame for the state’s more than 6,000 nursing home deaths. But, as WBFO’s Older Adults Reporter Tom Dinki found, many, including Republican lawmakers, watchdog groups and medical professionals, still have questions about what impact the order had.

 

 


WXXI News

Health insurance companies regulated by the state are waiting to hear back about their requests for 2021 rate changes for premium holders. The companies, like nearly every other industry, face many uncertainties due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and their requests vary widely.

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Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz is blasting New Era for the layoffs announced by the sports cap company one day after its federal jobs subsidies ran out.

Dan Clark / New York Now

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Wednesday that shopping malls will be allowed to open in New York beginning Friday if they meet certain conditions. At the same time, citing ongoing concerns about the coronavirus, he said any remaining county fairs still planned for this summer are canceled, and he hasn't yet made a decision on any school openings in the fall.

Bret Jaspers / WSKG News

When New York went into lockdown this spring, people across the state were required to adapt overnight to online learning, work, and even doctor's appointments. But as Executive Director of the Rural Schools Association of New York State David Little notes, not everyone was able to do that successfully.

Visit Buffalo Niagara

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Wednesday that malls in New York State will be allowed to reopen as soon as Friday, with restrictions mainly levied against their HVAC systems.

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When Prime Minister Justin Trudeau turned down an invitation to the White House this week, it sent a message in line with the current mood in Canada: This is not a good time to travel between Canada and the United States — with the coronavirus still surging in parts of America — to meet with President Trump.

Emily Russell / NCPR News

A state prison in the North Country is now home to nearly 100 inmates all over the age of 55. Officials say they transferred inmates to Adirondack Correctional because of the low coronavirus infection rate in the North Country.

Advocates gathered near the prison earlier this week and called on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to grant clemency to the inmates, who they say are at a high risk of getting seriously ill or dying from COVID-19.

Office of the Governor

A coalition of government reform groups say the New York State Legislature should consider limiting some of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s emergency powers gained during the pandemic and return, at least remotely, to meeting in session to set policy for the state.

Office of the Governor

New York is now requiring people from three additional states to quarantine for 14 days as more individuals are testing positive for COVID-19 nationwide.

New York state has been criticized for previously mandating that nursing homes take in COVID-19 patients from hospitals. But on Monday the state Department of Health issued a report saying the policy was not the major driver of nursing home deaths, and that it was instead nursing home workers unknowingly bringing the virus into facilities. WBFO’s Older Adults Reporter Tom Dinki spoke with Dr. Nancy Nielsen from the University at Buffalo to discuss the report and what it does — and does not — confirm about the state’s more than 6,000 nursing home deaths.

 


University at Buffalo

One of the core areas of medical research at the University at Buffalo's Medical School is restarting this week, after being quiescent for more than three months because of COVID-19.

Twitter

Ontario is set to introduce new legislation to enable the extension of some pandemic emergency orders over the next year.

Photo by Ron Kiener/Used with permission

Several sports deemed "low risk" by the state were allowed to resume play Monday, though with enforcement of added guidelines put in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19. A local sports facility better known for winter sports is also reopening, but on a limited and restricted basis.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

The New York State Fair will not open this year, due to the coronavirus, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced at a press conference on Monday.

Office of Gov. Andrew Cuomo

New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker issued a report Monday on the likely cause of deaths from COVID-19 in New York’s nursing homes that he says shows the virus came in through infected staff, not through hospital readmissions. 

 

 


Mike Desmond / WBFO News

Tourist attractions are now opening, after closing for 100 days due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

File Photo / WBFO News

New rules regarding who can be held on bail in New York state took effect Thursday. The new law rolls back some bail reform measures passed in 2019, and criminal justice advocates say it’s the wrong time to do it, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement.

Office of the Governor

Gov. Andrew Cuomo says the rate of the COVID-19 virus continues to be low in New York, with 11 deaths on June 30, but he said he worries that compliance with safety rules is slipping.

In a grim accounting of the coronavirus's progress in the United States, another milestone was reached Wednesday: more than 50,000 new cases reported in a single day.

Johns Hopkins University & Medicine's Coronavirus Resource Center, which tracks the virus worldwide, says the total number of cases reported in the U.S. stands at 2,686,480, an increase of 50,700 over Tuesday's figure. U.S. deaths attributed to the coronavirus stand at 128,062.

File Photo / WBFO News

A social media feud has been brewing between Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz and Comptroller Stefan Mychajliw over the health and safety of staff in the Rath Building.


Gov. Andrew Cuomo has signed into law new protections for renters who have trouble paying the bills because of the coronavirus pandemic. July also marks the beginning of a new state law that prohibits discounts on the sale of all tobacco products, including coupons and multipack price promotions.

Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

Gov. Andrew Cuomo will hold a news briefing at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday. Watch it live here. 

Twitter

The City of Toronto and surrounding municipalities say they will do what the province of Ontario won’t. Toronto’s city council has approved a bylaw that makes face coverings mandatory in indoor public spaces.

Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens

There is good news and bad news for arts and culturals today regarding pandemic reopenings.

Office of Gov. Andrew Cuomo

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is adding eight more states to a travel advisory list, as visitors from California, Georgia, Iowa, Idaho, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada and Tennessee will now be required to self-quarantine for two weeks upon arriving in New York.

 

Michael Mroziak / WBFO News

A local coffee shop chain whose workers recently unionized has announced the permanent closure of its three locations.

Updated at 1:40 p.m. ET

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country's top infectious disease expert, told members of Congress on Tuesday that although he can't predict the ultimate number of infections and deaths related to the coronavirus, "it's going to be very disturbing."

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