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COVID-19: Updated guidance for graduation & commencement ceremonies
Mon, Apr 12th 2021 04:25 pm
Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday announced new updated guidance for graduation and commencement ceremonies organized by schools, colleges and universities. Effective May 1, indoor and outdoor graduation and commencement ceremonies will be allowed with limited attendee capacity, depending on the event size and the location (e.g., stadium, arena, arts and entertainment venue).
New York state announces $210 million in food aid for April
Mon, Apr 12th 2021 04:10 pm
The state Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) announced all New Yorkers enrolled in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) will receive the maximum allowable level of food benefits for April. Additionally, those households already near or at the maximum benefit level now will receive a supplemental payment of at least $95 per month for as long as the supplemental payments continue.
Vaccinate Western New York regional hub issues a call for volunteers
Mon, Apr 12th 2021 02:10 pm
As more COVID-19 vaccine is beginning to arrive in WNY, volunteers are needed to assist with distribution efforts throughout the region. Vaccinate Western New York (VAXWNY), the local hub responsible to for ensuring the safe, efficient and equitable distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine, is issuing a call for volunteers across all five WNY counties (Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie and Niagara) to help in this historic effort.
New York state to provide new separate allocation of 35,000 COVID-19 vaccines for college students
Mon, Apr 12th 2021 01:45 pm
Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday announced New York state will provide a new, separate allocation of 35,000 vaccines to address the college student population at SUNY schools and private colleges. This initial allocation will include 21,000 vaccines to be administered to SUNY students and 14,000 vaccines to be administered at private colleges. The vaccines will be administered to residential and non-commuter students who are leaving for the summer.
NYS updates in-person school guidelines
Sat, Apr 10th 2021 04:15 pm
On Friday, the New York State Department of Health updated its interim guidance for in-person instruction at pre-K to grade 12 schools during the COVID-19 public health emergency. Changes related to physical distancing and use of barriers. That document can be read HERE.
Higgins announces federal help for struggling Western New York restaurants
Fri, Apr 9th 2021 09:00 pm
Congressman Brian Higgins announced new federal relief available to help restaurants struggling due to the pandemic. A $28.6 billion restaurant revitalization fund was included in the American Rescue Plan supported by Higgins.
COVID-19: 2 more pop-up vaccination sites in WNY
Fri, Apr 9th 2021 04:35 pm
Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Friday announced 16 community-based pop-up vaccination sites are coming online over the next week in locations picked to ensure the COVID-19 vaccine is distributed equitably throughout New York. These sites are expected to vaccinate 7,100 people throughout the week.
Attorney General James issues alert urging New Yorkers to report unlawful vaccine charges
Fri, Apr 9th 2021 04:00 pm
New York Attorney General Letitia James issued a consumer alert to remind New Yorkers that coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccines are free of charge, and urged any resident of the state who has been charged a fee to report it to her office immediately.
Higgins announces opening of grant program for museums, performing arts & live venues
Fri, Apr 9th 2021 08:55 am
Congressman Brian Higgins announced help is available for arts, museums and performance venues that had to close their doors or saw drastically reduced business due to the pandemic. Over $16 billion was provided through legislation supported by Higgins for the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) program.
COVID-19: 'South African variant' detected in Erie County samples
Fri, Apr 9th 2021 08:50 am
The Erie County Department of Health has learned two COVID-19 samples from residents were identified as containing the COVID-19 B.1.351 "South Africa variant of concern."
DFS to extend regulation requiring health insurers to waive copays for COVID-19 vaccine until April 30
Wed, Apr 7th 2021 06:20 pm
Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday directed the Department of Financial Services to extend the emergency regulation requiring all health insurers to waive co-pays for the COVID-19 vaccine until April 30. The extension of this regulation and guidance will help to ensure there are no barriers to New Yorkers accessing the vaccine as the state continues to implement its vaccine administration plan and get every New Yorker vaccinated.
Mask donation from Ford Motor Co. & United Auto Workers for City of Buffalo residents
Wed, Apr 7th 2021 06:20 pm
Mayor Byron Brown announced the City of Buffalo received a donation of 13,500 masks from the Ford Motor Co. and Local 897 of the United Auto Workers to help protect residents against the coronavirus.
Higgins announces over $8.4 million for Buffalo & Niagara Falls airports
Wed, Apr 7th 2021 06:00 pm
Congressman Brian Higgins announced $8,448,851 in federal COVID-19 relief for Western New York airports.
Statewide launch of 'Roll Up Your Sleeve' campaign, encourages New Yorkers age 16-plus who are eligible for COVID-19 vaccine to schedule an appointment
Mon, Apr 5th 2021 08:35 pm
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Monday announced the start of the statewide "Roll Up Your Sleeve" ad campaign to encourage all New Yorkers, especially those from neighborhoods where COVID-19 was most devastating, to get vaccinated. The ads will be shown on television and online statewide beginning April 7.
More than 10 million total COVID-19 vaccine doses administered across New York
Mon, Apr 5th 2021 12:40 pm
Over the weekend, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced more than 10 million total COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered across New York.
ECDOH cautions residents to reduce COVID-19 risks at holiday celebrations & reconsider spring break travel
Fri, Apr 2nd 2021 01:15 pm
For Erie County residents considering family celebrations and religious gatherings this upcoming weekend, the Erie County Department of Health is offering this guidance:
Performing arts & entertainment venues can reopen at 33% capacity
Fri, Apr 2nd 2021 01:10 pm
Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Friday announced performing arts and entertainment venues can reopen at 33% capacity. Venues can host up to 100 people indoors or up to 200 people outdoors.
Higgins asks US & Canada border agencies to implement virtual interviews for NEXUS applicants
Thu, Apr 1st 2021 10:15 pm
Congressman Brian Higgins is calling on agencies in the U.S. and Canada responsible for border management to implement a process that allows for virtual interviews for new NEXUS applicants.
Erie County: Additional COVID-19 variants of concern detected in samples
Thu, Apr 1st 2021 10:15 pm
Following the news last week that COVID-19 "California" variants had been detected in samples from Erie County residents, the Erie County Department of Health said additional variants of concern were found in specimens sequenced this week by the University at Buffalo's New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences.
To identify best COVID-19 treatments, patients with mild/moderate symptoms needed for NIH-funded study at UB
Thu, Apr 1st 2021 09:20 pm
Vaccinations may be front-page news these days, but clinicians are well aware that an effective treatment for COVID-19, especially for patients who don't require hospitalization, is still sorely needed.
Catholic Health expands hospital visitation
Thu, Apr 1st 2021 01:05 pm
Based on new guidelines from the New York State Department of Health, non-COVID-19 patients in Catholic Health hospitals are now allowed up to two visitors at a time. In addition, maternity patients will be allowed two support persons for the duration of their hospital stay and, in certain outpatient clinic settings, where space permits, patients may be accompanied by a support person for their appointments.
UB launches website to find appointments for COVID-19 vaccine
Wed, Mar 31st 2021 10:10 am
The University at Buffalo has launched a new website to help people easily find available COVID-19 vaccination appointments across Western New York.
Attorney general warns New Yorkers to remain alert against COVID-19 vaccine and stimulus scams
Wed, Mar 31st 2021 09:50 am
New York Attorney General Letitia James has issued an alert to New Yorkers to remain vigilant against potential scams related to the coronavirus public health crisis.
Collegiate sports can bring fans back to stands beginning April 2
Wed, Mar 31st 2021 09:25 am
Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Tuesday announced collegiate sports can bring fans back to the stands - under strict state guidelines - beginning April 2. Intercollegiate sports at large-scale venues that hold more than 1,500 attendees indoors or 2,500 attendees outdoors can host up to 10% indoor or 20% outdoor capacity.
National Fuel donated more than $1.3 million in 2020
Tue, Mar 30th 2021 05:00 pm
The board of directors for the National Fuel Gas Company Foundation, the charitable giving arm of National Fuel Gas Co., held its annual meeting on Friday, March 26.
Higgins: Paycheck Protection Program extended
Tue, Mar 30th 2021 04:45 pm
Congressman Brian Higgins announced the Paycheck Protection Program Extension Act (H.R. 1779) has been signed into law, extending the application deadline to May 31, 2021.
Meeting a challenge to vaccinate thousands
Tue, Mar 30th 2021 07:00 am
In January, when COVID-19 vaccines started trickling into New York state, the barriers for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to receive the vaccine seemed insurmountable.
Memorial Medical Center playing important role in mass-vaccination effort
Mon, Mar 29th 2021 04:25 pm
A local health care provider that has led the way in vaccinating area residents against COVID-19 is stepping up its game, assisting a state-run effort that will soon be delivering up to 10,000 doses of vaccine a week.
New Yorkers 30 years of age and older eligible to receive COVID-19 vaccine; 16 and under on deck
Mon, Mar 29th 2021 01:55 pm
Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday announced a new expansion of COVID-19 vaccine eligibility in New York. Beginning at 8 a.m. Tuesday, March 30, all New Yorkers 30 years of age and older will be eligible to receive the vaccine. Beginning April 6, universal eligibility goes into effect and all New Yorkers 16 years of age and older will be eligible to receive the vaccine.
A year's long wait is finally over for residents of adult care/assisted living communities in New York
Mon, Mar 29th 2021 11:55 am
The patience of thousands of NY seniors and their families has finally been rewarded with relaxed visitation and communal activities now being authorized by the New York State Department of Health, the regulating agency.
UB researchers detect 'California variants' of the coronavirus in WNY
Fri, Mar 26th 2021 04:50 pm
Since the pandemic began a year ago, University at Buffalo researchers and the Erie County Public Health Laboratory have been using a process called genomic sequencing to decode the genes of SARS-CoV2 and better understand how it is evolving.
GOP calls for lift of 11 p.m. curfew for bars & restaurants
Fri, Mar 26th 2021 04:50 pm
On Friday, New York Senate Republican Leader Robert Ortt was joined by State Sens. Ed Rath and George Borrello, and Assembly members Angelo Morinello and Mike Norris, to discuss a newly introduced resolution (J541) to rescind Gov. Andrew Cuomo's 11 p.m. curfew for bars and restaurants. The event was held at Soliday's Restaurant in Niagara Falls.
Attorney General James issues guidance to protect New Yorkers' stimulus payments from debt collectors
Fri, Mar 26th 2021 04:10 pm
Earlier this week, New York Attorney General Letitia James took action to protect millions of New Yorkers and block debt collectors from seizing billions of dollars in emergency stimulus payments authorized by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.
SBA to increase lending limit for COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loans
Fri, Mar 26th 2021 03:50 pm
The U.S. Small Business Administration is increasing the maximum amount small businesses and nonprofit organizations can borrow through its COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program. Starting the week of April 6, the SBA is raising the loan limit for the COVID-19 EIDL program from six months of economic injury with a maximum loan amount of $150,000 to up to 24 months of economic injury with a maximum loan amount of $500,000.
Higgins: Almost $11 million to expand vaccine access in WNY
Fri, Mar 26th 2021 03:45 pm
Congressman Brian Higgins announced federal funding totaling $10,819,250 for Neighborhood Health Center, Community Health Center of Buffalo (CHCB), and Jericho Road Community Health Center. The funding, included in the American Rescue Plan, will help health centers expand access to COVID-19 vaccines in underserved communities.
Excelsior Pass to help fast-track reopening of businesses & entertainment venues statewide
Fri, Mar 26th 2021 03:45 pm
Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Friday announced the launch of Excelsior Pass, a free, voluntary platform developed in partnership with IBM, which, his team said, "utilizes proven, secure technology to confirm an individual's recent negative PCR or antigen test result or proof of vaccination to help fast-track the reopening of businesses and event venues in accordance with New York State Department of Health guidelines."
'California variants' detected in Erie County COVID-19 samples
Fri, Mar 26th 2021 02:25 pm
The Erie County Department of Health on Friday announced five specimens collected from Erie County residents in January have been identified as containing COVID-19 "California variants." This comes from the genetic sequencing of nearly 1,000 specimens by the interdisciplinary team at the University at Buffalo's New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences.
Launch of free citizen public health training program to educate and empower New Yorkers as public health leaders
Fri, Mar 26th 2021 12:40 pm
Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Thursday announced the launch of a free, online citizen public health training course for New Yorkers to learn about preparedness for and prevention of public health emergencies from top public health experts.
NYS vaccinations: 14 community-based pop-up vaccination sites coming online
Fri, Mar 26th 2021 12:35 pm
Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced 14 community-based pop-up vaccination sites are coming online over the next week at houses of worship, community centers and local businesses. These sites are expected to vaccinate more than 4,200 people throughout the week.
NYS: Revised nursing home visitation guidance to align with federal guidelines
Fri, Mar 26th 2021 10:50 am
Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker on Thursday announced the release of revised nursing home visitation guidance to align with guidelines recently released by the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
 

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