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NYS Department of Labor: $9.2 billion in unemployment benefits paid during COVID-19 pandemic, including nearly $290 million released through new system for back pay
Mon, May 18th 2020 08:55 pm
The New York State Department of Labor on Monday announced $9.2 billion in unemployment benefits have been paid to New Yorkers since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. This figure includes nearly $290 million in back pay that was processed in the past two weeks and which was unlocked through a new, streamlined process that allows New Yorkers to easily submit federally mandated weekly certifications they had missed, unlocking previous weeks' benefits.
Erie County Department of Health to offer COVID-19 antibody tests to Erie County residents
Mon, May 18th 2020 02:40 pm
Starting Tuesday, May 19, the Erie County Department of Health will offer a series of clinics for COVID-19 antibody testing.
Western New York reopening
Mon, May 18th 2020 12:05 pm
Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday said Western New York will enter into phase one of his "New York Forward" reopening on Tuesday. Nonessential services have been closed since March 20, when Cuomo put "New York State on PAUSE" to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Hochul offers additional details on phase one reopening
Mon, May 18th 2020 11:15 am
In a conference call Monday morning with the Buffalo Niagara Partnership, Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul offered additional details on what phase one of "New York Forward" entails. She is head of the "control room" monitoring when Western New York can begin to exit Gov. Andrew Cuomo's "New York State on PAUSE" shutdown.
New York offers comprehensive new testing site map
Sun, May 17th 2020 02:25 pm
On Sunday, the governor's office posted a site where people can find coronavirus test sites by ZIP code.
Heroes Act: NYSAC applauds House, seeks resolution from Senate, president
Fri, May 15th 2020 07:30 pm
"The New York State Association of Counties (NYSAC) applauds the U.S. House of Representatives for passing the Heroes Act, a fifth stimulus proposal that includes funding for the essential public employees providing essential services in our communities. This legislation includes direct and flexible recovery aid to states and local governments - including counties. "We now urge the U.S. Senate and President Trump to coalesce around a bipartisan agreement as soon as possible so that counties can continue to battle the pandemic while we safely reopen our economies at the local level."
AG James, Cuomo again renew suspension of state debt collection as coronavirus continues to impact New Yorkers' wallets
Fri, May 15th 2020 04:50 pm
New York Attorney General Letitia James and Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Friday announced the state has again renewed an order to halt the collection of medical and student debt owed to New York that was specifically referred to the office of the attorney general (OAG) for collection for an additional 30-day period.
Poloncarz issues emergency order on use of face masks
Fri, May 15th 2020 03:55 pm
Erie County Executive Mark C. Poloncarz on Friday issued a local emergency order regarding the usage of face coverings and masks during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ("CDC") has recommended wearing cloth face coverings which cover the nose and mouth in order to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus as an additional public health measure along with social distancing, frequent hand washing, and other preventive actions.
Govs. Cuomo, Murphy, Lamont & Carney announce multi-state agreement on beaches ahead of Memorial Day weekend
Fri, May 15th 2020 01:55 pm
Acting on a commitment to coordinate regional policies in response to COVID-19, Govs. Andrew M. Cuomo, Phil Murphy of New Jersey, Ned Lamont of Connecticut and John Carney of Delaware on Friday announced a multistate agreement to reopen public and private beaches with certain restrictions in place effective, Friday, May 22. They said this approach will better align the states' policies ahead of the summer months.
Pet Volunteer Visit Week at Niagara Hospice House
Fri, May 15th 2020 12:45 pm
This was the first week that Niagara Hospice pet volunteers were able to bring their dogs to visit residential patients through the windows at Niagara Hospice House in Lockport. A spokesperson said, "The volunteers and dogs had missed coming for their regular visits for the last two months. Our patients were very pleased to see the different dogs for few minutes each day this week."
Ortt, colleagues request investigation and oversight into nursing homes
Thu, May 14th 2020 11:15 am
On Thursday, New York State Sen. Rob Ortt was joined by his colleagues, Sens. Pat Gallivan and Chris Jacobs, in requesting a formal, independent investigation into New York state's nursing homes. The request for this investigation was made to the New York State Senate Health Committee, the New York State Senate Committee on Investigations and Government Operations, and the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
Niagara County sends letter to governor regarding Newfane nursing home
Thu, May 14th 2020 10:15 am
On Tuesday night, the Niagara County Legislature unanimously agreed to send a letter to Gov. Andrew Cuomo regarding the situation at Newfane Rehabilitation and Health Center and asking for his intervention. It read:
Department of Labor: Emergency measures will ensure unemployed New Yorkers with forfeiture days on their accounts will receive benefits during this emergency
Wed, May 13th 2020 03:45 pm
The New York State Department of Labor on Wednesday announced that, in just over a month, more than 330,000 New Yorkers have been approved for the pandemic unemployment assistance (PUA) program, which provides unemployment benefits to individuals who do not qualify for traditional unemployment insurance. In total, the Department of Labor has now paid $7.4 billion in unemployment benefits to New Yorkers since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March - three-and-a-half times the total paid in benefits last year.
Niagara County still has face coverings available for businesses as they prepare to reopen
Wed, May 13th 2020 02:15 pm
On Wednesday, the Niagara County Center for Economic Development noted that, "as Niagara County and Western New York prepare to reopen, it is vital that all businesses have a reopening plan, which implements guidelines and protocols to ensure the health and safety of all employees and customers."
North Country set to reopen May 15
Wed, May 13th 2020 02:10 pm
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Wednesday announced that, as of today, the North Country has met all seven metrics required to begin phase one of the state's regional phased reopening plan when "New York State on PAUSE" orders expire on May 15. The area joins the Finger Lakes, Southern Tier and Mohawk Valley Regions.
NYS Health Facilities Association: We'll need 'significant assistance' to increase testing at nursing homes
Wed, May 13th 2020 12:35 pm
Stephen Hanse, president and CEO of the New York State Health Facilities Association and the New York State Center for Assisted Living, representing over 400 skilled nursing providers and adult care/assisted living communities, issued the following statement on Tuesday:
Developmental Disabilities Awareness Day 2020 canceled
Wed, May 13th 2020 12:35 pm
The Developmental Disabilities Awareness Day has been canceled for 2020 due to social distancing requirements in New York state because of COVID-19. The DD Awareness Day committee unanimously voted to cancel this year's events.
ECMC announces community COVID-19 testing sites program
Wed, May 13th 2020 11:45 am
Erie County Medical Center Corp. today announced 10 community health center and primary care practice organizations have been approved to receive $2.3 million in Delivery Service Reform Incentive Program (DSRIP) funds to support COVID-19 testing at 27 sites and from three mobile units operating in 17 priority ZIP codes in Western New York: Amherst, Buffalo, Dunkirk, Jamestown, Lockport, Niagara Falls, North Tonawanda, Wheatfield and Williamsville.
UB: Loss of taste or smell strongly predicts which health care workers will test positive for COVID-19
Wed, May 13th 2020 09:25 am
A study by a University at Buffalo investigator sheds new light on the link between early COVID-19 symptoms and eventual positive test results. The research could lead to new protocols for determining who will be tested and how best to use testing resources.
Cuomo directs hospitals to prioritize COVID-19 testing for children
Wed, May 13th 2020 09:15 am
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Tuesday directed hospitals statewide to prioritize COVID-19 testing for children displaying symptoms similar to an atypical Kawasaki disease and toxic shock-like syndrome. The state is currently investigating approximately 100 reported cases in New York where children - predominantly school-aged - are experiencing these symptoms possibly due to COVID-19. The illness has taken the lives of three young New Yorkers, including a 5-year old in New York City, a 7-year old in Westchester County, and a teenager in Suffolk County.
AMA to host national tribute to celebrate new medical student graduates
Tue, May 12th 2020 03:15 pm
The American Medical Association (AMA) announced it will host a national celebration to honor the 30,000 medical students who are graduating this spring. It will bring together leading voices in health care, science and culture to offer encouragement, advice and inspiration to these future physicians.
Girl Scouts of Western New York cancel summer camps
Tue, May 12th 2020 03:15 pm
The Girl Scouts of Western New York will not open its day and resident camps for more than 2,000 girls this summer due to safety concerns about the COVID-19 virus, officials announced.
NYS announces $880 million in temporary food assistance for New York's school children
Tue, May 12th 2020 03:00 pm
The New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance announced additional food assistance of more than $880 million to help New Yorkers with children who previously received free and reduced-price meals at school. The Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) program will provide eligible households with a total of about $420 per child, with school buildings closed for the remainder of the school year due to the novel coronavirus outbreak.
Attorney General James provides direction for law enforcement on unlawful evictions during COVID-19 pandemic
Mon, May 11th 2020 06:50 pm
New York Attorney General Letitia James provided direction to law enforcement departments throughout New York state so they have clear guidance on how to protect the public from unlawful evictions both during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) public health crisis and into the future.
NYS Health Facilities Association statement on Cuomo's new policy for nursing homes
Mon, May 11th 2020 12:20 pm
Stephen Hanse, president and CEO of the New York State Health Facilities Association and the New York State Center for Assisted Living, representing nearly 400 skilled nursing providers and adult care/assisted living communities with more than 100,000 employees who provide essential long-term care services through New York, issued the following statement in response to Gov. Andrew Cuomo's press conference on Sunday:
ECMC left out of recent federal funding to hospitals affected by COVID-19 pandemic
Mon, May 11th 2020 11:25 am
As a frontline urban safety net hospital, as well as Western New York's only level 1 adult trauma hospital, ECMC responded quickly to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic when, two months ago, it immediately expanded its capability to care for COVID-19 positive patients.
Higgins: Over $65 million in COVID-19 hotspot funding awarded to local hospitals
Mon, May 11th 2020 10:05 am
Over the weekend, Congressman Brian Higgins announced Western New York hospitals will receive more than $65.4 million in federal funding designated for the nation's health care facilities hardest hit by COVID-19 cases.
NYSEG warns customers of new scam attempts
Sat, May 9th 2020 11:20 am
NYSEG, an AVANGRID company, is urging customers to be vigilant of scammers posing as representatives of the energy companies. NYSEG has recently received reports of customers having accepted calls from people who claim to be employees or consultants of the company. Customers are urged to never give out personal or account information to unsolicited callers.
Cuomo announces state Department of Health investigating evidence COVID-19 can cause severe illness in children
Fri, May 8th 2020 06:25 pm
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Friday announced the New York State Department of Health is investigating several cases of severe illness in children and child deaths that may be related to COVID-19. There have been 73 reported cases in New York where children are experiencing symptoms similar to Kawasaki disease and toxic shock-like syndrome possibly due to COVID-19.
NYS Department of Labor to proactively inform applicants of their claim's status
Fri, May 8th 2020 06:25 pm
The New York State Department of Labor on Friday announced a new initiative to proactively inform New Yorkers of the status of their unemployment benefit application to help them follow its progress. The effort, part of a broader campaign to proactively communicate with New Yorkers applying for unemployment benefits, will use emails and text messages to keep New Yorkers informed throughout the process - from submission to approval.
Higgins: Over $1.3 million for health centers to expand community testing
Fri, May 8th 2020 03:35 pm
Congressman Brian Higgins announced more than $1.3 million in funding awarded to federally qualified health care clinics to expand COVID-19 testing capacity in Western New York. The supplemental funding was included in the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act, approved by the House of Representatives on April 23, which provided $25 billion to expand testing nationwide.
Cuomo: NYS will extend window for victims to file cases under Child Victims Act until Jan. 14
Fri, May 8th 2020 03:00 pm
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced the state will extend the window for victims to file otherwise time-barred cases under the Child Victims Act for an additional five months, until Jan. 14, 2021.
American Cancer Society continues 'Alone Together' virtual 5K series
Fri, May 8th 2020 01:45 pm
Join the American Cancer Society for the concluding parts of its socially distant "Alone Together" 5K series on May 9 and 16. Participants from across the country will walk, run, roll or hike in a virtual 5K series to show cancer patients and their families that, "We are still there for them, even when we're apart."
Jacobs calls for an immediate fix to New York's unemployment system
Fri, May 8th 2020 01:25 pm
Calling it the most dysfunctional and mismanaged aspect of New York state's response to the coronavirus pandemic, New York State Sen. Chris Jacobs is asking the Cuomo administration and the New York State Department of Labor to immediately commit all the necessary resources to fix what he called the "broken" unemployment system that still has not provided benefits to tens of thousands of New York residents who have been out of work since March.
Cuomo: Moratorium on COVID-19-related evictions will be extended until Aug. 20
Fri, May 8th 2020 01:20 pm
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Thursday announced the state's moratorium on COVID-related residential or commercial evictions will be extended for an additional 60 days, until Aug. 20. The governor also announced the state is banning late payments or fees for missed rent payments during the eviction moratorium, and allowing renters facing financial hardship due to COVID-19 to use their security deposit as payment and repay their security deposit over time.
Kaleida Health expands COVID-19 testing: General public can now tested - symptomatic or not
Fri, May 8th 2020 12:10 pm
Kaleida Health on Thursday announced it has once again expanded laboratory testing for COVID-19, adding anyone in the general public, who is interested or needs it, regardless if they are symptomatic or not.
NFMMC to offer community testing for COVID-19
Thu, May 7th 2020 04:30 pm
Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center will offer the community diagnostic testing for COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, beginning Monday, May 11.
Where to get coronavirus testing
Thu, May 7th 2020 11:20 am
Coronavirus testing is ramping up in Western New York.
Higgins: National Science Foundation awards to support local COVID-19 research at Hauptman-Woodward
Thu, May 7th 2020 07:35 am
Congressman Brian Higgins on Wednesday announced the award of $600,000 in National Science Foundation (NSF) grants to Hauptman-Woodward Medical Research Institute (HWI) for multiple research projects into the molecular structure of SARS-CoV-2, the virus which causes COVID-19.
NYS Department of Labor: $5.8 billion in unemployment benefits paid to New Yorkers since COVID-19 pandemic began
Thu, May 7th 2020 07:15 am
The New York State Department of Labor on Wednesday announced that over $5.8 billion in unemployment benefits have been paid to 1.5 million New Yorkers since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.
 

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