GOVERNOR CUOMO ON COVID-19

WPCNR CORONA VIRUS REPORT. From Governor Andrew M. Cuomo. September 1, 2020:

 It’s been 184 days since New York’s first confirmed COVID case. Sunday, 66,241 tests were reported with 656 positive — a 0.99% infection rate. The total hospitalizations statewide dropped to 418, the lowest number since this crisis began, and there were 109 New Yorkers in ICUs — also the lowest number recorded. Sadly, we lost one New Yorker to COVID yesterday.

Again, this is the lowest number lost since the crisis began. Some perspective: There was a time where we lost hundreds of people every day. But New Yorkers took in the facts and acted responsibly. And together determined what the future held. Let’s not lose sight of how far we’ve come and let’s not forget what we’ve learned. It’s up to us, New York. 

 Here’s what else you need to know tonight:

 1. SUNY Oneonta will transition to remote-learning for two weeks. Last week, the State released guidance that if a college experiences 100 COVID cases or an outbreak equal to 5 percent of its population (whichever is less) — that college MUST go to remote-learning for two weeks. In response to a cluster of COVID cases at SUNY Oneonta, the school with transition to remote-learning right away and the State will set up three rapid testing sites in Oneonta that will open Wednesday. Oneonta residents can call 1-833-NYSTRNG (1-833-697-8764) to make an appointment. 

 2.  A reminder that rapid test sites are up and running in Western NY. Amid an uptick in cases in the region, the State set up eight new test sites, with results taking just 15 minutes. Residents MUST call and schedule an appointment —no walk-ins. Call 1-833-697-8764 to make an appointment.  

3. New York needs federal funding to address the economic shortfalls of the pandemic. Monday, joined by labor leaders, I issued a letter calling on New York’s Congressional Delegation to provide $59 billion to address the catastrophic budget shortfalls resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. Read the letter here.  

4. Today is National Poll Worker Recruitment Day. Election Day is fast approaching and the New York State and Local Board of Elections are asking registered voters to pitch in and help work the polls (a paid position). To be eligible, you must be a registered voter in New York State.  

5. A guide to New York City museums as they begin to reopen. Last week, museums and cultural institutions in New York City were permitted to reopen while adhering to public safety guidelines. ILoveNY has put together a guide on opening details for these beloved institutions, and everything else you need to know about NYC’s museum reopenings. 

 6. The U.S. Open kicked off Monday. The United States Tennis Association and the State have worked together to make sure this iconic sports event could go on this year (with no spectators), with special precautions in place to ensure the safety of the players, as well as staff and all other personnel.  

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GREENBURGH ATTRACTS AMAZON, TESLA FOR NEW SITES

WPCNR THE FEINER REPORT. From Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner August 31, 2020:

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT REPORT – TESLA MOVING IN…AMAZON COMING TO TOWN – SHOPRITE FINALIZING CONSTRUCTION PLANS – ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT COORDINATOR TO BE HIRED

Some good news: Some high profile companies filling vacancies and bringing employment to the Town are planned.

Tesla, is actively retro-fitting the former Joyce Leslie building on Rt. 119, for a showroom/dealer location. The gas/station car wash across the street, also on the intersection of Rt. 119 and Hillside Avenue recently received conceptual NYSDOT approval for the updated car wash and Convenience store site plan. This project is before the Planning Board and, if approved, would include a new sidewalk, bus stop and landscaping.

Amazon plans a last-mile facility in the Elmsford warehousing portion of the Town.

A ShopRite supermarket is approved, along Saw Mill River Road, and will replace the former multiplex cinema. The developer is actively working on construction plans.

Statement from Amazon spokesperson

“We’re excited to continue our investment in the state of New York with the addition of a new AMXL operations location in Town of Greenburgh.  Amazon has long provided delivery of large products such as televisions to couches, and we’re excited to continue expanding this offering to customers in the Westchester County area.  We expect the site to open in 2020.”

The Town issued a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) for outside assistance via and Economic Development specialist to assist in filling vacancies.

That RFQ was reissued with a COVID-related supplement and the Town has received responses from 12 individuals and firms seeking to assist the Town with Economic Development (in areas including Assistance navigating County, State and Federal economic recovery stimulus programs;

Assistance with private financial institutions/lenders regarding small business loans; Identifying toolkits, grants, and other assistance from non-profits and other organizations; Conducting surveys, one-on-one business outreach; Advising on land-use patterns/shifts; consumer behavioral shifts; etc.). The Town Board plans to conduct interviews with the most qualified of the responders in September/October.

Paul Feiner

Greenburgh Town Supervisor

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WHITE PLAINS WEEK THE AUG 28 PROGRAM TONIGHT 7:30 PM ON FIOS CH 45. OPTIMUM CH 76 & www.wpcommunitymedia.org.

JOHN BAILEY AND JIM BENEROFE ON THE BIG WIND FROM THE GULF
GOVERNOR ANDREW CUOMO ON NY COVID DECLINE AND ON CDC’S 180 DEGREE TURN ON TESTING
BAILEY AND BENEROFE ON THE SCHOOL REOPENING — KEY INFO
BAILEY & BENEROFE ON THE NEW LOOK OF CONVENTIONS
JIM BENEROFE ON THE UNCERTAIN REAL ESTATE MARKET AHEAD HAS THE BOOM BURST OR WILL WP DEVELOPMENTS ARRIVE JUST IN TIME
THE LEGACY AND LEADER OF THE NEW JOURNALISM
BAILEY
BENEROFE
IN THEIR 20TH YEAR COVERING TRUTH, JUSTICE, AND THE AMERICAN WAY EVERY WEEKTHE NEWS LEADERS
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When to Early Vote in Westchester

WPCNR CAMPAIGN 2020. From County Legislator Benjamin Boykin, August 28, 2020:


The Westchester County Board of Elections has announced the times and locations for early voting for this fall’s general election. 

The early voting period is October 24 through November 1.

Registered voters voting early may cast their ballots at ANY of the seventeen (17) designated early voting locations. On Election Day, voters must vote at their assigned polling sites.

Early Voting Times:

  • Saturday, October 24:  12 p.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Sunday, October 25:  12 p.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Monday, October 26:  8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
  • Tuesday, October 27:  12 p.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Wednesday, October 28:  8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
  • Thursday, October 29:  12 p.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Friday, October 30:  8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
  • Saturday, October 31:  12 p.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Sunday, November 1:  12 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Early Voting Locations:

  • Eastchester Public Library, 11 Oakridge Place, Eastchester, NY 10709
  • Dobbs Ferry Village Hall, 112 Main Street, Dobbs Ferry, NY 10522
  • Greenburgh Town Hall, 177 Hillside Avenue, White Plains, NY 10607
  • Veterans Memorial Building, 210 Halstead Avenue, Harrison, NY 10528
  • Pound Ridge Town House, 179 Westchester Avenue, Pound Ridge, NY 10576
  • Mamaroneck Town Center, 740 W. Boston Post Road, Mamaroneck, NY 10543
  • Mt. Kisco Memorial Complex at Leonard Park, 1 Wallace Drive, Mt. Kisco, NY 10549
  • Mt. Pleasant Community Center, 125 Lozza Drive, Valhalla, NY 10595
  • Mt. Vernon City Hall, 1 Roosevelt Square, Mt. Vernon, NY 10550
  • New Rochelle City Hall Annex, 90 Beaufort Place, New Rochelle, NY 10801
  • Joseph G. Caputo Community Center, 95 Broadway, Ossining, NY 10562
  • Peekskill Nutrition Center, Neighborhood Center, 4 Nelson Avenue, Peekskill, NY 10566
  • Somers Town House, 335 Route 202, Somers, NY 10589
  • Westchester County Board of Elections, 25 Quarropas Street, White Plains, NY 10601
  • Grinton I. Will Library, 1500 Central Park Avenue, Yonkers, NY 10710
  • Riverfront Library, One Larkin Center, Yonkers, NY 10701
  • Yorktown Cultural Center, 1974 Commerce Street, Yorktown Heights, NY 10598

If you have any other questions, please visit the Westchester County Board of Elections on the web at https://citizenparticipation.westchestergov.com or call (914) 995-5700.

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CUOMO: IF YOU WERE IN CONTACT WITH A COVID POSITIVE PERSON, GET TESTED, HEALTH DEPARTMENT RECOMMENDS

 WPCNR THE LETTER TICKER. From Governor Andrew M. Cuomo Press Office. August 27, 2020:

Today we commemorate the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment’s adoption into the U.S. Constitution, giving women the right to vote. We honor the suffragists and activists who fought for equality and paved the way forward—and we stand united in the fight to break down remaining barriers to full equality for Americans. 

On the numbers, we continue to make good progress in the fight against COVID. Our hospitalization rate remains low and for the 19th straight day now the infection rate is below 1 percent. This is all a reflection of New York’s hard work and determination against COVID and we must keep moving forward.  

Photo of the Day: In celebration of the 19th Amendment centennial, a statue of the abolitionist and suffragist Sojourner Truth was unveiled at the Walkway Over the Hudson State Historic Park in Ulster County. Here’s what else you need to know tonight: 

1. The total number of COVID hospitalizations remains low. Yesterday, there were 492 total hospitalizations. Of the 71,189 tests reported yesterday, 566, or 0.79%, were positive. Sadly, we lost 3 New Yorkers to the virus.  

2. We continue monitoring an uptick in cases in Western New York. Earlier this week we noticed the infection rate was rising slightly and has been above 1.0% for six days. Yesterday, the rate was 1.4%. The case increase is driven in part by clusters at two manufacturing plants and among seasonal farm workers. There is no cause for alarm—we are continuing to monitor, test and track to prevent additional spread in the region. 

3. Get tested if you have been in close contact with someone who is positive for COVID-19. When in doubt—get tested. Despite a baffling reversal of CDC guidance on this matter, the State Department of Health continues to recommend that anyone who has had close contact with someone who is positive get tested, whether or not they are exhibiting symptoms. In New York, anyone who wants a COVID-19 test can get one

 4. Gender equality is a public health issue. On Women’s Equality Day, Melissa DeRosa, Secretary to the Governor and Chairwoman of the NYS Council on Women and Girls, published an article detailing New York State’s response to the specific challenges that women have faced during the COVID-19 pandemic—from an uptick in domestic violence incidents to going through labor in challenging circumstances. Read the piece here.  

5. Mental health resources are still available to those who need it. We can’t underestimate the impact this pandemic is having on mental health. New Yorkers can call the state’s hotline at 1-844-863-9314 to get free emotional support, consultations and referrals to a provider or visit headspace.com/ny for free meditation and mindfulness resources.  

Tonight’s “Deep Breath Moment”: Paulo Luardo is an emergency department nurse at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center. His fiancee Carrie Wan works across the street as a gyncelogy surgery nurse at Memorial Sloan Kettering. The couple were set to marry in 2020, but when COVID hit New York City, the two nurses postponed their wedding to fight on the frontlines of the pandemic. They credit the kindness of strangers to helping them get through the worst of the surge. Notes of appreciation slipped under under their apartment door by neighbors inspired them, as did the resounding daily cheers at 7 p.m. in support of essential workers on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. On behalf of all New Yorkers, I thank them for their sacrifice and dedication to their patients, and wish them the best on their upcoming nuptials

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WEST NILE VIRUS-INFECTED MOSQUITOS IN ELMSFORD, HASTINGS, MOUNT VERNON, RYE

ORIGINAL WEST NILE VIRUS MOSQUITO. ANY MOSQUITO CAN CARRY THE DISEASE

WPCNR VIRAL . From the Westchester County Department of Health August 26, 2020:

The Westchester County Health Department announced that this season’s first batches of mosquitoes carrying West Nile Virus in Westchester were detected in Elmsford, Hastings, Mount Vernon and Rye.

So far this year, there have been no reported cases of West Nile Virus in Westchester. Symptoms include fever, headache, body aches and joint pain, but can be more serious for people 60 and older, and those with underlying medical conditions.

Sherlita Amler, MD, Commissioner of Health, said:  “With so many of us spending more time outdoors, protect yourself and your family by using repellents. Apply sunscreen first, and repellent second.”

The areas surrounding the positive mosquito batches were being inspected today by the Health Department, and nearby catch basins that hold standing water will be treated to protect against further mosquito breeding nearby.

With heavy rains expected overnight, Westchester County Executive George Latimer recommended residents follow the Health Department’s West Nile Virus prevention advice to avoid mosquito bites.

County Executive George Latimer said: “We can make our backyards less inviting breeding grounds for mosquitoes by pouring out standing water after it rains and we can make ourselves less tempting targets by using repellents.”

To date, these are the first positives out of 166 batches of mosquitos collected from 11 locations throughout Westchester that were tested for West Nile Virus by the New York State Department of Health and were analyzed on Tuesday.

New York City announced on Aug. 4 that it had detected West Nile Virus in mosquitos in all five boroughs. Last year, 10 Westchester batches of mosquitoes had West Nile Virus out of 243 submitted for testing, with the virus first detected in mosquitoes collected on July 24.

The Health Department reminds residents about mosquito safety through news releases, social media and our website, where a report on mosquito control and surveillance can be found on the West Nile Virus page. Throughout the season, the Department also traps and tests mosquitoes to track the presence of mosquito-borne viruses.

For more ideas on how to reduce the mosquito population near your home, go to https://health.westchestergov.com/west-nile-virus and follow these tips:

  • Avoid the outdoors in the late afternoon and early evening when mosquitoes are active and feeding, or use insect repellents then and follow the label instructions.
  • Adults can use insect repellents with up to 30 percent DEET on infants over two months of age by applying the product to their own hands and then rubbing it onto their children, avoiding their hands, eyes and mouth. Products containing DEET are not recommended for use on children under two months of age.
  • Wear long pants, long-sleeved shirts and socks when outdoors, especially in areas where mosquitoes are active and feeding.
  • Check around your property for anything that can hold water, and pour it out or put it away.
  • Check and remove standing water from children’s toys and play houses left outside.
  • Remove discarded tires.
  • Drill holes in the bottoms of all recycling containers that are left outdoors.
  • Turn over plastic wading pools, buckets and wheelbarrows when not in use.
  • Change the water in birdbaths at least twice weekly.
  • Keep storm drains and gutters clear of leaves and debris.
  • Continue to chlorinate swimming pools, outdoor spas and hot tubs until properly winterized or drained for the season. Also, if not chlorinated, drain any water that collects on their covers.

Residents who notice large areas of standing water on public property should report them to the Westchester County Department of Health at (914) 813-5000.

The areas surrounding the positive mosquito batches were being inspected today by the Health Department, and nearby catch basins that hold standing water will be treated to protect against further mosquito breeding nearby.

With heavy rains expected overnight, Westchester County Executive George Latimer recommended residents follow the Health Department’s West Nile Virus prevention advice to avoid mosquito bites.

County Executive George Latimer said: “We can make our backyards less inviting breeding grounds for mosquitoes by pouring out standing water after it rains and we can make ourselves less tempting targets by using repellents.”

To date, these are the first positives out of 166 batches of mosquitos collected from 11 locations throughout Westchester that were tested for West Nile Virus by the New York State Department of Health and were analyzed on Tuesday.

New York City announced on Aug. 4 that it had detected West Nile Virus in mosquitos in all five boroughs. Last year, 10 Westchester batches of mosquitoes had West Nile Virus out of 243 submitted for testing, with the virus first detected in mosquitoes collected on July 24.

Sherlita Amler, MD, Commissioner of Health, said:  “With so many of us spending more time outdoors, protect yourself and your family by using repellents. Apply sunscreen first, and repellent second.”

The Health Department reminds residents about mosquito safety through news releases, social media and our website, where a report on mosquito control and surveillance can be found on the West Nile Virus page. Throughout the season, the Department also traps and tests mosquitoes to track the presence of mosquito-borne viruses.

For more ideas on how to reduce the mosquito population near your home, go to https://health.westchestergov.com/west-nile-virus and follow these tips:

  • Avoid the outdoors in the late afternoon and early evening when mosquitoes are active and feeding, or use insect repellents then and follow the label instructions.
  • Adults can use insect repellents with up to 30 percent DEET on infants over two months of age by applying the product to their own hands and then rubbing it onto their children, avoiding their hands, eyes and mouth. Products containing DEET are not recommended for use on children under two months of age.
  • Wear long pants, long-sleeved shirts and socks when outdoors, especially in areas where mosquitoes are active and feeding.
  • Check around your property for anything that can hold water, and pour it out or put it away.
  • Check and remove standing water from children’s toys and play houses left outside.
  • Remove discarded tires.
  • Drill holes in the bottoms of all recycling containers that are left outdoors.
  • Turn over plastic wading pools, buckets and wheelbarrows when not in use.
  • Change the water in birdbaths at least twice weekly.
  • Keep storm drains and gutters clear of leaves and debris.
  • Continue to chlorinate swimming pools, outdoor spas and hot tubs until properly winterized or drained for the season. Also, if not chlorinated, drain any water that collects on their covers.

Residents who notice large areas of standing water on public property should report them to the Westchester County Department of Health at (914) 813-5000.

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NY STATE INFECTION RATE CONTINUES DOWN DOWN DOWN. GOVERNOR BLASTS CDC TESTING PROHIBITION. SAYS CDC IS CARRYING OUT POLITICS FOR THE PRESIDENT. DEMANDS MAYOR DEBLASIO USE NYPD TO ENFORCE MASKING, DISTANCING.WESTERN NY HITS 1.4 INFECTION RATE, GOVERNOR WORRIED.

WPCNR CORONAVIRUS REPORT From the Governor’s Press Office.(Edited) August 26, 2020:

Editor’s Note: Governor Andrew Cuomo blasted the Center for Disease Control policy change Monday that advises if you are exposed to a covid-infected person you do not have to get a test, and reported that the CDC told him it was political, to wit, the Governor said: 

Talking about the hyperpolitical nature of this (Trump) administration, the CDC put out new guidance that really strains credulity.

The CDC on Monday changed the guidance to say if you have been in close contact with a person who was infected with COVID, you do not need to get a test. Okay? This reversed their previous guidance, which was if you were in close contact with a COVID-positive person, you needed to get a test. They reversed their own guidance: if you are in close contact with a person, you don’t need to get a test.

I’ve spoken to health experts from around the globe. None of them will say that this makes any sense from a health point of view. The only plausible rationale is they want fewer people taking tests because, as the President has said, if we don’t take tests you won’t know that people are COVID-positive and the number of COVID-positive people will come down. Yes, that is true.

That is his policy of “deny the problem.” If you don’t take your temperature, you won’t know that you have a fever. Yes, that is true.

But it totally violates public health standards and rationale and just fosters his failed policy of denial – “COVID’s not a problem. It’s going to be gone when the weather gets warm. It’s going to be gone by Easter. There’s only a COVID problem because we take tests.”

He now has CDC carrying forward his political agenda and it is frightening and it is alarming. And when you can politicize public health, which is actually politicizing national security.

Now, he’s consistent in his politics over government because he is politicizing national security when he nominates Chad Wolf to be the head of the Department of Homeland Security who was just a political operative. The Department of Homeland Security is what the President uses to build his wall, to put children in cages – that’s all done by the Department of Homeland Security.

So, he made the Department of Homeland Security a political operation and now he’s making the CDC a political operation.

It is frightening. It should be frightening. This is the same CDC that was supposed to guard public health. And was supposed to track the virus that was in China last December. It’s the same CDC that showed that they either lied to the American people or they’re incompetent because they didn’t track the virus in China.

And they didn’t track the virus leaving China and going to Europe in January, February, March. And that’s why New York was ambushed. That is a fact. It’s not a political statement, it’s not hyperbolic, it’s not rhetorical – it’s a fact.

And that’s why New York had the number of cases it had. Because the flights from Europe came here. It’s not the China virus. It’s the European virus because it came here from Europe. And the CDC either totally missed it or they were ordered not to speak about it. And this just evidences once again political control over what is supposed to be a public health organization.

The history books are going to record this. Shame on the people in the CDC. These will be indefensible actions in the light of history. Indefensible.

What possible rationale is there to say, “You’re in close contact with a COVID positive person and you don’t need a test.” What plausible rationale? And this from the same CDC that already disgraced itself when they said there’s no such thing as asymptomatic spread and then totally reversed themselves.

This is the same CDC that said the transmission is when a person who is symptomatic coughs or sneezes. And then did a full 180 and said, “Whoops they can also transfer it if they’re asymptomatic.”

When, by the way, doctors around the world were already saying that. And how do they rationalize their position where you can have asymptomatic spread by now saying you don’t even have to have a test?

They (the CDC)also did a 180 on the quarantine rule. Where now they say you don’t have to quarantine if you’re coming in from a country that is a hotspot. On what theory? Why would you reverse yourself on the quarantine order? Because they don’t want publicity that there is a COVID problem.

Because the president’s politics are that COVID isn’t a problem, we’re passed COVID and it’s all about the economy. “The economy is doing great and we’re going to focus not he economy.” And that’s his reelection strategy. So he’s using the CDC as a campaign, rhetorical device. This is all his political/public relations.

Also, on the wildfires in California, Americans were very good to New York when we needed help and I will never forget it personally. New Yorkers will never forget it. And we’re going to show the same love and mutuality they showed to us and we’re going to send forest rangers to California to help fight with the forest fire. With that I’m going to turn it over to Dr. Zucker NY COMMISSIONER OF HEALTH) for some comments and then we’ll take questions.

Thank you. Dr. Zucker?

Dr. Howard Zucker: Thank you, Governor. Regarding the CDC situation, this is indefensible from a public health point of view and I have to say it makes absolutely no sense and I’ve spoken to the scientists at the CDC and they say it’s political, so I concur with all you’re saying that this is just indefensible.

WESTERN NEW YORK GETTING WORSE ON INFECTIONS

We still have a caution flag for Western New York which is at 1.4 percent today. It’s better than it was but not where it should be so we’re focusing on Western New York and we’ll continue to do that.

NEW YORK CITY HAS TO USE NYPD TO ENFORCE COVID PROTOCOLS NOW OTHERWISE THE INFECTION RATE WILL GO UP

Our enforcement efforts are continuing. The infection rate isn’t staying down by anything other than the consequence of our actions so we’re continuing the enforcement actions. We did one in Brooklyn, one in Queens, one in Staten Island, one in Suffolk. Those are done by the State Liquor Authority and the State Police.

Again, call on local governments – they’re supposed to be doing the compliance. They don’t make the decisions of what opens and what closes but they do do the compliance and they have to do a better job. New York City needs to use the NYPD.

New York City relies on its Sheriff’s Department to do compliance. It’s not going to be effective. There is only 150 people in the Sheriff’s Department.

There is 30-something thousand NYPD. I understand the issues they have in New York City but they have to do compliance. Otherwise you’re going to see the numbers go up.

A couple of comments on national situations the President announced that he would be nominating his Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf to be the permanent Secretary.

This is just a couple of weeks after the US Attorney in the Southern District refused to advance Wolf’s lawsuit against New York State, where we sued them on the Trusted Traveler Program. I was former attorney general; I’ve never seen a U.S. attorney say that they will drop a lawsuit because the allegations made by the department are false. Chad Wolf made false allegations. He said that New York State was the only state that had a green light law that didn’t allow disclosure. That was false. That was knowingly false. It had been publicly discussed.

Wolf and his department very well are aware of those laws. And the U.S. attorney said that he was making false statements. Trump’s response is to nominate him to be confirmed.

The House of Representatives said that they were considering an investigation. Any attorney general, Attorney General Barr, if he was a real attorney general and actually serious about this oath of office, he would be investigating how a department for many months was conducting a political vendetta against New York State rather than allowing the president to advance Wolf and Cuccinelli, who are thugs.

That’s what we would call them in New York. Rather than advance them for nomination, they should be advanced for investigation. And I hope the House of Representatives does do the investigation and if the U.S. Senate confirms these people, it is the ultimate disregard for the rule of law, which is a continuing theme with this administration but would literally take it to a new level.

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Bedford’s Burdick Supplies detailed absentee ballot procedures.

WPCNR THE LETTER TICKER.From Chris Burdick, Bedford Town Supervisor. August 25, 2020:

The three-part reforms include:

  • Absentee ballot requests can be submitted to the Board of Elections immediately. You can access printable request forms here.
  • The concern for contracting Covid-19 can be used as an excuse for voting by absentee ballot as was in June.
  • Lack of a post mark will not invalidate your absentee ballot, and ballots will be counted as long as they are received by November 10.

Additionally Governor Cuomo, by Executive Order, is requiring all local Board of Elections to:

  • Send out a mailing to all voters on or before September 8 regarding deadlines for voters (to register to vote, when an absentee ballot request must be made, and a completed absentee ballot received etc;
  • Adopt a uniform, and simple, envelope in which the absentee ballot will be mailed, including instructions on use of that envelope; and
  • Require all affidavit and absentee ballots be counted by 48 hours after the election.

Many people have voiced concerns about the USPS, and use of secure drop off ballot boxes as an alternative to using the postal service.  Every voter who wishes may drop off an absentee ballot at a ballot box at any early voting site or at the County Board of Elections located at 25 Quarropas St, White Plains.   

In-person Early Voting occurs from October 21 to November 1, and in-person voting  will be on Election Day, November 3.  During Early Voting you may vote at any of the Early Voting sites in the County as a result of new technology.  On Election Day you may vote only at your assigned voting place.  It is likely that the Early Voting sites used for the June primary will remain the same, however the BOE has not issued a final list of those sites.  If you want to vote in person I urge you to take advantage of Early Voting this year. Lines are short to nonexistent and we expect that Election Day will be very busy.   

If you wish to vote using an absentee ballot, we recommend you submit your absentee ballot request form as soon as possible.  Ballots will be mailed out in early October.

If you need to register to vote, you can do so until Friday, October 9.  Registration forms must either be postmarked by October 9, or delivered in person to the County Board of Elections office at 25 Quarropas St., White Plains before the close of business on October 9. Registration can also be done through the DMV, or you can access printable forms here.

For more information visit https://www.governor.ny.gov/news/governor-cuomo-signs-law-sweeping-election-reforms

Please forward this e-news to family and friends who may be interested in this information.

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GOVERNOR CUOMO PROPOSING HIKING FINES TO UTILITIES FOR POOR RESTORATION FROM THE CURRENT .02 OF 1%, .04 of 1% OF OPERATING REVENUES, AND EXPRESS EXIT PROCEDURE. FINE UNDER PRESENT RATES: $53.4 MILLION


WPCNR THE POWER STORY. FROM THE GOVERNOR’S OFFICE. AUGUST 24, 2020 with notes by WPCNR:

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced he will propose legislation to hold utilities accountable for failures to effectively respond to future power outages. In response to the unacceptable performance of multiple electric and telecom service providers during tropical storm Isaias, the legislation will increase the current legal limits on penalties and create a streamlined process for revocation of a utility’s operating certificate for recurring failures. 

Currently, penalties related to reliability and continuity of electric service, including restoration following a major outage or event, start at $100,000 or .02 of 1% of annual intrastate gross operating revenue, whichever is greater, for each separate and distinct offense.

Penalties rise to $500,000 or .04 of 1%, whichever is greater, for combo gas and electric utilities in the restoration of electric service following a major outage event or emergency.

(Editor’s Note: Con Edison in 2019 reported gross revenues of $13 billion, 343 Million. ($13,343,000,000). If Con Edison is fined under the present rates for the Isaias restoration performance, the fine would be at .04 of 1% of gross revenues: $53,720,000.

Governor Cuomo had been quoted August 20 in The Gothamist as saying Con Ed could be fined as much as $500,000 for its Isaias restoration efforts.

In 2018, Con Edison and Orange & Rockland power companies were fined $10,750,000 for that outage loudly complained about by officials in Westchester and Rockland. End Editor’s Note.)


“The response by the utility companies to Isaias was unacceptable and it’s even worse that they continue to have such problems during storms and in the aftermath. We know these storms are going to happen. We don’t pay for utilities to function on a nice day, the essence of what we pay for is be ready for a storm — give me information when my power goes out and get it back on quickly,” Governor Cuomo said

“The laws are too protective of the utility companies and that has to change. I am proposing legislation that will create penalties that are significant and will force utilities to change their behavior. 

The bill will also create a faster revocation process so that if they’re not providing that service then we will find someone else who can and do it quickly. We must pass this new law and do it right away.”

The Governor’s announcement builds on his announcement last week that he will propose legislation to expedite and clarify franchise revocation procedures. This provision will address questions including the ownership and transfer of assets such as substations, cables and trucks to ensure that the ratepayers who funded them are not charged again in the event of a new operator taking them over.

In addition, the bill will require utilities to clearly communicate with customers during outages and give accurate information regarding power restoration so New Yorkers can make informed decisions and plan based on the time of the outage. 

Governor Cuomo also announced last week that the Department of Public Service has sent Notice of Apparent Violation letters to four electric service providers — Con Edison, Orange & Rockland, PSEG LI and Central Hudson — and telephone, cable and internet provider Altice-Optimum that they now face steep penalties and must take immediate corrective actions so that similar failures are not repeated during the remainder of hurricane season.  DPS is still INVESTIGATING franchise revocations for Con Edison and Orange & Rockland as well as termination of PSEG-LI’s contract with LIPA if the investigation deems it appropriate. 

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