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April 10, 2020 Issue  
Lansing, New York  
Volume 16, Issue 15

posticon Village of Lansing Tax Rate to Remain Stable

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Village of Lansing

The Village of Lansing Board of Trustees set a public hearing for the 2020-21 budget at an online meeting Monday.  The $2.9 million budget is 18.69% less than last year's budget, largely due to less construction project expense in the coming year.  After raising the tax rate to adjust reserve funds for the past few years, Hartill said he will not raise the tax rate this year.

"In these financial times I would characterize it as a goal and not as a solid device," he said. "We're almos t certainly going to have to prioritize construction projects.  I elected to not increase our tax rate. Then there are probably going to be some people who can't pay those taxes. So I think we're going to have to be very flexible in how we go forward."

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posticon Village Election Postponed

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Village Election Postponed

The Village of Lansing Elections, which had been scheduled for April 28th have been postponed until after June 1, 2020. The Villages of Lansing, Cayuga Heights, Dryden, Groton, Trumansburg had all scheduled elections on April 28th, but the Tompkins County Board of Elections has announced village election dates are to be determined.  The Presidential Primary has also been postponed until June 23.

The postponement is a result of Executive Order 202.13, issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo on March 30th, putting all nonessential activities on hold during the COVID-19 pandemic.  Cuomo extended the special restrictions Monday, directing schools and nonessential businesses to stay closed for an additional two weeks through April 29th.

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posticon Wegmans Coffee Shop Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19

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Sunday the Tompkins County Health Department said it had received notification that a Wegmans employee who works in the Coffee Shop is a confirmed COVID-19 case. The individual worked multiple shifts at Wegmans during the past two weeks, located at 500 S. Meadow St., Ithaca, NY.

"Communications like this are meant to reduce further exposure by encouraging individuals who may have come in contact with the infected individual to act in the community's best interest, get tested, and self-quarantine even if they are not exhibiting symptoms," said Frank Kruppa, Public Health Director. "We are working closely with Wegmans management to ensure the safety of all employees and patrons. Grocery stores are essential businesses, and it is important that they are able to continue to serve our community."

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posticon China and Oregon Ventilators Slow Plan To "Borrow" Upstate Ventilators

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Last Friday, April 3, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced an Executive Order that the National Guard would take ventilators and protective equipment from hospitals Upstate for use downstate. The order was met with bipartisan opposition from all levels of government. Congressman Tom Reed (R NY-23) said Tuesday that the Governor "is responding to the strong opposition as the order has not yet been carried out and an announcement was made that the state has procured an additional 1,140 ventilators over the weekend".

"I'm not going to be in a position where people are dying and we have several hundred ventilators in our own state, somewhere else," Cuomo said last Friday. "I apologize for the hardship to those institutions — ultimately there is no hardship, if you don't get the ventilator back, I give you my personal word I will pay you for the ventilator — but I'm not going to let people die because we didn't redeploy these ventilators."

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posticon Emergency Response Conference Room Named for Shurtleff

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shurtleff conference roomLee Shurtleff outside the DoER conference room renamed in his honor.
In a brief ceremony at the Department of Emergency Response last Friday, the DoER Large Conference Room was renamed as a lasting tribute to former director Lee Shurtleff, who is retiring after 32 years of service to Tompkins County. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, social distancing protocols were followed during the dedication.

Shurtleff, of Groton, was initially hired by the County as a fire dispatcher in March of 1988, becoming Director of Emergency Response in 2002, a position he held for 17 years. During that time, he spearheaded the County Emergency Management Plan and a consolidated dispatch center, merging four dispatch centers into one.  He was also instrumental in the construction and implementation of the 800mHz Emergency Communications System, creating true interoperability between first response agencies.

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posticon New York Highest in Infected, But 7th Smallest Percentage of Newly Unemployed

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NY

A new Wallethub analysis reports that New York has the 7th smallest increase in unemployment claims of any other state.  Despite being the epicenter of COVID-19 in the United States, the state has managed to have the 3rd lowest increase in the Number of Unemployment Insurance Initial Claims of the 50 states and the District of Columbia.  As of yesterday (Thursday) 159,937 New Yorkers had tested positive for the virus.  7,067 fatalities were reported in New York State.

Another analysis finds that New York is the most aggressive state in limiting virus exposure.  New York ranked #3 in 'prevention and containment,' #1 in tested COVID-19 cases per capita, 12th in the share of workers who have the ability to take sick leave, 6th in public healthcare spending per capita, and 11th in its at-risk population.  New York has the lowest total public health emergency preparedness funding per capita of the 50 states and District of Columbia.  New York also ranked the fourth lowest public health care system quality.

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