Latest Tri-State News Headlines Updated October 24, 2020 7 AM

THIS NEWS FROM REGION ONE REGARDING THE SITUATION AT NORTH CANAAN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

October 23, 2020Dear Region One Families and Staff:

We have completed the contact tracing for the two positive COVID-19 cases that were reported in the North Canaan Elementary School community yesterday. We can report that one of the cases is a student in the middle school and is symptom free. The other is an individual who has never entered the school and has had no contact with the students or staff. Based on the evaluation of the information provided to the Torrington Area Health District and our Medical Advisor, the risk of infection to other students or staff is very low due to the mitigation strategies that are in place in thes chool. However, out of an abundance of caution, ​we will be closing the fifth and sixth grade classes for North Canaan elementary School for fourteen days beginning today, Friday October 23 until Wednesday, November 4th. Fifth and sixth grade students may return to school for in-person learning on Thursday, November 5th. The fifth and sixth grade students will begin distance learning on Monday, October 26th and will continue through Wednesday, November 4th. Classroom teachers will be in contact with the families in these grades as soon as possible with regard to log-in and scheduling information. Everyone who has been in close contact with the positive cases has been contacted and is currently in quarantine as per the direction of the Torrington Area Health District. ​Siblings of fifth and sixth graders should come to school on Monday.

Connectivity issue stirs tension at board meeting

https://republicanamerican-ct.newsmemory.com/?token=7421379716

A heated exchange over the issue of connectivity took place at the start of a recent Board of Selectmen meeting. Caroline Nastro appeared before the board to lodge a complaint about the town’s internet expansion committee, saying it operates as an arm of the grassroots NorthwestConnECT group and its advice “should be taken with a grain of salt.” She claimed the committee is paid by Northwest-ConnECT. Gary Steinkohl, chairman of the local committee, took offense at Nastro’s allegations. He said over the last many weeks he’s allowed her to make comments. “She has continued to spread misleading information and disinformation,” he said. “There is almost no factual basis, and I urge the Board of Selectmen to disavow and discount what she is saying.”

Court orders Red Hook polling site moved to Bard campus

https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/local/2020/10/24/red-hook-district-5-polling-site-move-bard-court-rules/6019230002/

Election Day is a little more than a week away.
But, that’s enough time to change a polling site in the interest of safety, according to a Dutchess County Supreme Court ruling.
Judge Maria Rosa on Friday ordered the Town of Red Hook’s District 5 polling site moved from the Episcopal Church of St. John the Evangelist to Bard College’s Bertelsmann Campus Center, in response to concerns voters would not be able to adequately social distance at the church.
The decision is a reversal of her Oct. 13 ruling that the site could not be changed – she cited an affidavit from county Republican Elections Commissioner Erik Haight advising that altering the plans could confuse the district’s voters — after the Board of Elections the following day opted to move the site for Red Hook’s Districts 7 and 8.

Cuomo, state issue COVID-related Halloween guidelines

Johnson Newspaper Corp.

https://www.hudsonvalley360.com/news/publicservicenews/cuomo-state-issue-covid-related-halloween-guidelines/article_dc52e131-ad85-5fc8-81ab-8f94b9b6b635.html

With Halloween fast approaching, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has issued guidance for those celebrating to do so without the risk of being infected with COVID-19. The governor had previously said he would not deter people from trick-or-treating this year, but after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention deemed the activity “high-risk” last month, Cuomo, in concert
with the state Department of Health, issued guidelines to be followed for those celebrating Halloween. There are low- and moderate-risk Halloween activities, such as carving pumpkins (low risk) and one-way
trick-or-treating where individually wrapped treat bags are lined up in a grab-and-go fashion (moderate risk), according to the CDC.
But there are various Halloween traditions the CDC has deemed high risk, and officials say these activities should be avoided to prevent further spread of the virus. High-risk activities include traditional trick-or-treating where treats are handed to children who go door to door; trunk-or-treat events where treats are handed out from trunks of cars lined up in parking lots; attending crowded costume parties held indoors; indoor haunted houses where people may be crowded together and screaming; hayrides or tractor rides with people who aren’t in your household; using alcohol
or drugs, which can cloud judgment and increase risky behaviors; and traveling to a rural fall festival not in your community if you live in an area with community spread of COVID-19. The Columbia County Sheriff’s office will be participating in trunk-or-treating with a number of groups
and organizations throughout the county. Sheriff’s Office spokesman Lt. Louis Bray said deputies will be passing out candy at drive-thru trunk-or-treat events put on throughout the county. The Chatham Fire Department is sponsoring a Halloween Drive-Thru Trick-or-Treat at the Columbia
County Fairgrounds starting at 5 p.m. on Halloween. In Greene County, the Rotary Club of Greenville will be hosting a trunk-or-treat event from 3-5:30 p.m. on Halloween, Oct. 31, at the GNH parking lot on Route 32.

Barrett, Michael face off for 106th Assembly

By Kate Lisa

https://www.hudsonvalley360.com/news/politics/barrett-michael-face-off-for-106th-assembly/article_edab6166-59e1-5756-837e-88d425f2e3a6.html

Two candidates with political experience will face off Nov. 3 to secure a seat representing the 106th Assembly District, which serves most of Columbia and Dutchess counties. Polls will be open Election Day from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Guthrie cites strokes in putting touring behind

LARRY P ARNASS The Berkshire Eagle

https://berkshireeagle-ma.newsmemory.com/

PITTSFIELD — Folk singer Arlo Guthrie, whose anti-war epic, “Alice’s Restaurant Massacree,” put Berkshire County on a new musical map in 1967, said Friday that he no longer will tour, ending a half-century of live performances. The news came Friday not in a tweet, but in a highly personal, 1,100-word post to Guthrie’s Facebook page in which he discloses that he has suffered strokes that affect his ability to perform.

STOCKBRIDGE HIGHWAY DEPARTMENT
Chief on paid leave amid concerns about performance

CLARENCE F ANTO Eagle correspondent

https://berkshireeagle-ma.newsmemory.com/

STOCKBRIDGE — Highway Superintendent Leonard Tisdale was placed on one-week administrative leave Thursday, after the town administrator raised concerns about his “disappointing” job performance. Responding to Town Administrator Michael Canales’ recommendation to terminate Tisdale, the Select Board instead voted 3-0 to place him on leave, with pay, pending further consultation with Town Counsel J. Raymond Miyares.

Rev. Joallen Forte speaks out about anti-Semitic vandalism, questions Great Barrington police response

By Amanda Burke, The Berkshire Eagle 6 hrs ago

https://www.berkshireeagle.com/news/local/rev-joallen-forte-speaks-out-about-anti-semitic-vandalism-questions-great-barrington-police-response/article_5f5c85be-149f-11eb-bc24-3fc9e7707d95.html

GREAT BARRINGTON — After anti-Semitic graffiti was scrawled on the side of the historically Black Macedonia Baptist Church, the Rev. Joallen Forte is speaking out about the impact of the incident and its early handling by local police. Over the years, the church on Rosseter Street had been marked up with graffiti not once but twice before late last month, when the person who cleans the church discovered the epithet. Great Barrington police are investigating the incident as a hate crime. No suspect has been identified. Before she and others rid their church wall of the graffiti, Forte called Great Barrington police to make a report after service let out Sunday, Sept. 27. She said she was asked a few questions over the phone then told that officers were handling other things, and would respond to the church when available. A white member of the Macedonia church disapproved of what police had told Forte over the phone, and so she drove to the police station herself and returned with two officers, according to Forte. “It wasn’t until somebody Caucasian went over and got them,” she said. The board of Bridge issued a statement Oct. 8 condemning the hate crime, and calling on all residents to work toward making the community a place where Black people feel safe. The organization hit its fundraising mark to purchase floodlights to help illuminate Macedonia Church and is working to raise more money to buy a surveillance system for the institution.
For Macedonia Church member Reggie Leonard, the slur scrawled on his church was a reminder that the community is not free from bigotry. He said the time for change is now, and it starts by reaching young people.

Repeat sex offender charged with having sawed-off shotgun in Sandisfield home

By Heather Bellow, The Berkshire Eagle

https://www.berkshireeagle.com/news/local/repeat-sex-offender-charged-with-having-sawed-off-shotgun-in-sandisfield-home/article_be5576b0-1473-11eb-b407-5304d88c3a7a.html

SANDISFIELD — A town man with a long history of sex crimes against minors, including a recent stalking charge in Connecticut, is now facing firearms charges after police found a sawed-off shotgun in his home. Brian Hohman, 65, was arraigned Sept. 23 after police found the weapon while investigating a “possible sexual assault” at his home, according to a police report. He was released from jail five days later after posting $2,500 of the initial $15,000 bail. During a search of the home, police said they found the gun on the floor of Brian Hohman’s unlocked closet, without a mechanical lock or other safety device. Police also say they found a single round of 16-gauge shotgun ammunition at the home. Hohman, whose convictions stretch from the Berkshires to the U.K., was arrested again on Oct. 7 for allegedly stalking a Winsted, Conn. teen in August. He is currently held on $250,000 bond in that case. Hohman’s record shows 47 arraignments in the Berkshires on sexual assault charges, including rape of a child, that stretch from 1993 to 2017, according to court documents. A Level 3 sex offender in Massachusetts and a former Great Barrington resident, Hohman was convicted in 1993 for assaulting eight minors in the Berkshires, for which he served a six-year prison sentence. Hohman also has a criminal record in New York, Florida and California, according to the Republican-American, a newspaper based in Waterbury, Conn. Hohman is scheduled to reappear in Torrington Superior Court on Oct. 30. on the stalking charge. And he is scheduled to appear again on Oct. 29 in Southern Berkshire District Court, where he is charged with possession of a sawed-off shotgun and improper storage of a firearm

Health Care Workers contract COVID-19

Robin Hood Radio just got off a telephone call with Roberta Foster, an Employee at Geer Village in the memory care unit. She is currently at Charlotte Hungerford Hospital in Torrington. Roberta has been there all week fighting off COVID-19 and was almost put on a ventilator yesterday. Roberta is feeling a little better today, and told me this is the first day she did not think she would die. Roberta also informed us that now two members of her family have also contracted COVID-19. Roberta just wanted to confirm to us that indeed, there are some serious cases that developed.

Falls Village P and Z Approves Housing Plan

At the Falls Village Planning and Zoning Commission meeting last night at town hall, unanimously approved the affordable housing project proposed by The Falls Village Housing Trust for River Road.

Marshall Miles will be interviewing Dr. Mark Hirko at 7:20 AM Friday morning on The Breakfast Club on Robin Hood Radio

Marshall Miles will be interviewing Dr. Mark Hirko at 7:20 AM Friday morning on The Breakfast Club on Robin Hood Radio about Sharon Hospital, which has now reported a few staff members that have tested positive for COVID-19. According to a report from maria Horn, that number is in the “single digits” and the hospital is actively doing contact tracing with the Department of Public Health in order to determine the source of the infection. None are reported to be seriously ill, and all are quarantining.The hospital has had only had one COVID-positive patient recently, who was admitted within the last week for surgery and tested positive while there. Sharon Hospital has also changed its entry points, in order to have a safer flow of people into and out of the hospital. They have opened the front entrance for patients; the side entrance will be used for emergencies and employees.

A report on the status at Geer Village from Ruth Epstein from the Republican-American who contacted Geet Village:

As of yesterday 7 staff 19 residents have been identified as infected with COVID-19. As of now, no one has become seriously sick. Also Once again there are no cases at Geer Nursing And Rehabilitation.

COVID-19 update from Region One: North Canaan Elementary School October 22, 2020

Out of an abundance of caution, school will be closed on Friday, October 23rd, to allow for the completion of contact tracing and to clean and sanitize the school.

Due to the short notice, there will be no distance learning tomorrow, so that teachers and staff can meet with Dr. Roy. Dr. Roy will be in communication with all North Canaan families on Sunday, October 25th with information about the reopening of school on Monday, October 26th.Dear Region One Families and Staff:We have received notification regarding two new positive cases of COVID-19 within the North Canaan Elementary School community. All family members associated with these cases have been quarantined and are symptom free. These individuals will remain at home in quarantine according to the direction provided by the Torrington Area Health District.Out of an abundance of caution, school will be closed on Friday, October 23rd, to allow for the completion of contact tracing and to clean and sanitize the school. Due to the short notice, there will be no distance learning tomorrow, so that teachers and staff can meet with Dr. Roy. Dr. Roy will be in communication with all North Canaan families on Sunday, October 25th with information about the reopening of school on Monday, October 26th.As a reminder, COVID-19 is spread mainly via person-to-person contact through contaminated air droplets from coughing and sneezing by an infected person. As with controlling the spread of other viruses, we urge everyone to discuss the following preventive measures with your children and family members:5People Reached7EngagementsBoost Post7 SharesLikeCommentShare

COVID: Dutchess BOCES high school staff member dies after testing positive

Katelyn Cordero Poughkeepsie Journal

https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/education/2020/10/22/covid-dutchess-boces-high-school-staff-member-dies/3730949001/

A staff member at the Dutchess County BOCES Alternative High School in Poughkeepsie died over the weekend, after testing positive for COVID-19 earlier in the month, District Superintendent Richard Hooley said.
The school had been in hybrid learning since the beginning of the semester and the employee came into contact with students and staff immediately prior to the Oct. 6 diagnosis, Hooley said.
However, up students and employees were told to isolate following contact tracing efforts, he said no other known cases have resulted from the employee’s positive case.
The school is preparing to reopen Monday after being closed since Oct. 7.

Nearly 1,000 new COVID-19 cases in Massachusetts

By Larry Parnass, The Berkshire Eagle.

https://www.berkshireeagle.com/news/local/the-checkup-nearly-1-000-new-covid-19-cases-in-massachusetts/article_eff55222-14b8-11eb-a731-e7c6429e2c5b.html

The DPH said new cases nearly hit 1,000 statewide Thursday — 986, to be specific. Thirty people died. As the “leading indicators” item notes all of the four ways the DPH tracks progress in fighting the coronavirus are looking pretty grim. The DPH reported Thursday that it sees a “positive trend” on the positive test rate, the number of patients with COVID-19 in hospitals, the state’s testing capacity and its contact tracing capabilities. Look at the numbers and see if you agree. Berkshire County’s death toll stood at 51 as of Thursday, with the confirmed COVID-19 case count up two, to 744, the DPH said.
The DPH said 30 new deaths were reported in Massachusetts, pushing the statewide total to 9,589. Deaths including those listed as probably caused by COVID-19 are 9,810. Confirmed cases rose 986, to 143,927.
The case totals (and death counts) in neighboring counties: Franklin, up 11, to 456 (72); Hampshire, up 10, to 1,430 (153); Hampden, up 86, to 9,305 (up four, to 804). According to data provided by Johns Hopkins University, 118,892 people in Massachusetts with COVID-19 have recovered.

Racist Zoom meeting intruder rattles Great Barrington Du Bois event

By Heather Bellow, The Berkshire Eagle

https://www.berkshireeagle.com/news/local/racist-zoom-meeting-intruder-rattles-great-barrington-du-bois-event/article_058663de-13eb-11eb-b56c-7bfd44b5b6dd.html

Participants in an online event Sunday to honor W.E.B. Du Bois were jarred by a Zoom-bomber uttering racist slurs. A virtual event to honor civil rights pioneer and native son W.E.B. Du Bois on Sunday evening was “Zoom-bombed” by someone uttering racist slurs. Great Barrington Police are investigating and the Berkshire County District Attorney’s Office was notified, according to Gwendolyn VanSant, vice chair of the town’s W.E.B. Du Bois Legacy Committee, which held the event. The intruder arrived just as the committee began its online version of the annual celebration to commemorate the dedication of the Du Bois Boyhood Homesite as a National Historic Landmark 51 years ago.
It also marked the renaming of the local middle school for Du Bois last summer.

Several large institutions in Salisbury were put on “soft lockdown” on Tuesday, Oct. 13, as the State Police at Troop B conducted a massive search, aided by the K-9 unit, for a man involved in what is being described as a “domestic incident.”

Stephanie Magyar, principal of Salisbury Central School, sent a note to parents explaining that the school “entered a soft lockdown just before 9 a.m. after hearing from Troop B that there was a domestic dispute nearby and the police were searching for an individual involved. Police also recommended that residents of Noble Horizons remain indoors. The police were also on the grounds of the Salisbury School boarding school for boys in grades nine to 12. Salisbury School is 2 miles north of Noble Horizons. The investigation didn’t end until Thursday, Oct. 15, when the State Police were able to arrest Brian Cupole, 30, of Shelton, Conn.
The police report said that troopers responded to a call about a domestic incident, but no information was given on the location of the call. Neighbors in the area just west of Salisbury Central School at Lincoln City and Burton Road said they saw police and K-9s at around 9 a.m. in their neighborhood.
The police said that, “An arrest warrant was drafted and subsequently signed by the court on Oct. 14. On Oct. 15, the accused was located, arrested and processed without incident.” The charges against Cupole are criminal mischief, larceny, disorderly conduct, violation of protective order and threatening.


Health departments given $2.8 million for testing, tracing

BY PAUL HUGHES REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

https://republicanamerican-ct.newsmemory.com/?token=1309317411

MANCHESTER — The state government is distributing federal funds to the 65 local health districts and departments for COVID-19 testing, contact tracing, community outreach and other pandemicrelated public health purposes.
Through Wednesday, the state Department of Public Health has disbursed 21 grants totaling $2.8 million, including $403,187 to the Waterbury Department of Public Health. The grants are being financed with $20 million that the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has committed to allocate to Connecticut over three years. The funding is being distributed based on population and poverty level in a community.

Gillibrand: Pass legislation to save restaurants

By Kate Lisa Johnson Newspaper Corp.

https://www.hudsonvalley360.com/news/national/gillibrand-pass-legislation-to-save-restaurants/article_502b58ac-8c72-536f-b512-1bd812b84abe.html

WASHINGTON — Two state restaurateurs joined U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand on Tuesday afternoon to advocate for the passage of a bipartisan congressional bill to help independent restaurant owners keep their businesses alive amid the coronavirus pandemic. The hospitality industry and restaurants have faced significant financial hardships in the wake of COVID19, which forced nonessential businesses to close or limit capacity. Diners in New York continue to be limited to 50% restaurant capacity, meaning fewer customers and less staff at every meal. Gillibrand urged her fellow senators during a virtual press conference Tuesday to pass the bipartisan Real
Economic Support That Acknowledges Unique Restaurant Assistance Needed to Survive (RESTAURANTS) Act of 2020. The RESTAURANTS Act would create a $120 billion Restaurant Revitalization Fund to address the long-term challenges of food service and drinking establishments and ensure they maintain operations,
pay workers and keep their doors open.

Lawmakers OK tax break for Cairo solar farm


By Sarah Trafton Columbia-Greene Media

Full story at https://www.hudsonvalley360.com/news/greenecounty/lawmakers-ok-tax-break-for-cairo-solar-farm/article_1e175fb3-5cc9-5e4b-8b4f-fb5a84b7852a.html


CATSKILL — Greene County lawmakers approved a 15-year tax break Monday for a proposed solar facility
to be built in Cairo.
Fronted by Con Edison Clean Energy Businesses, Inc., of Valhalla, the approximately 2-megawatt solar farm
is slated for Old Route 23 in Acra.
The project will use about 20 acres of the 95-acre parcel, Real Property Tax Director Ray Ward said.
Legislator Thomas Hobart, R-Coxsackie, voiced concerns about the payment in lieu of taxes, or PILOT,
agreement.
“I think we’re going down a slippery slope,” he said. “This opens a can of worms.”
The county has seen a recent increase in the number of renewable energy proposals, with Bogart Solar in
Catskill, a 1.6-megawatt facility on Cauterskill Road, Flint Mine Solar and Hecate in Coxsackie, and
Glidepath’s battery storage facility on Route 9W in Catskill.

New York extends ban on commercial evictions. Here’s for how long

Joseph SpectorNew York State

Full story at https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/politics/albany/2020/10/21/new-york-extends-ban-commercial-evictions/6003027002/

ALBANY – New York businesses will have a little more time to avoid evictions from their offices due to COVID-19. Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed an executive order Tuesday extending the state’s moratorium on COVID-related commercial evictions and foreclosures through Jan. 1. The measure was set to expire, and it protects commercial tenants and mortgagors in the face of the economic toll caused by the pandemic, including retail establishments and restaurants. Cuomo said the executive order gives businesses additional time to get back on their feet and catch up on rent or their mortgage or to renegotiate their lease terms to avoid foreclosure. The move aligns the state with residential eviction moratorium, which was also recently extended until Jan. 1.

38 states now on travel list as Lamont mulls modifications

While Gov. Lamont considers how to modify the travel restrictions and standards for determining if travelers from other states with high COVID-19 rates must quarantine upon arrival in Connecticut, 38 states fell onto the weekly list. Added were Arizona and Maryland, while no states were removed. The tri-state travel advisory was jointly imposed by Connecticut, New York and New Jersey to check the spread of COVID-19 from outside the three states. It currently applies to travelers from states that either have a positive test rate higher than 10 per 100,000 residents or a positivity rate higher than 10% over a rolling seven-day average. Travelers from listed states are required to self-quarantine for 14 days unless they have had a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of travel, or until they test negative after arriving in Connecticut. The tri-state advisory generally directs travelers from states that have high rates of coronavirus to self-quarantine for 14 days. Visitors must also fill out a travel sheet available on the state’s virus website.

Lamont: COVID rate at highest level since June

BY PAUL HUGHES REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

Full story at https://www.rep-am.com/top-stories/2020/10/20/lamont-covid-rate-at-highest-level-since-june/

Gov. Ned Lamont reported the rate of positive tests for COVID-19 hit 3% based on testing numbers reported Tuesday. The daily positivity rate was last this high in June. Paul Hughes Republican-American
WINDSOR — The positive test rate for COVID-19 hit 3% for the first time since June based on daily testing numbers that were released Tuesday.
In addition, the number of hospitalized patients topped 200 for the first time mid-June in another sign that the coronavirus outbreak is resurging in Connecticut.
Gov. Ned Lamont reported the concerning increases in the infection and hospitalization rates during a news conference in Windsor to announce a $50 million grant program for financially struggling small businesses and nonprofit organizations.

Developer pulls plug on Elm Court resort effort, lists property for $12.5 million

  • By Clarence Fanto, Eagle correspondent

STOCKBRIDGE — An eight-year effort to develop a 112-room, $75 million resort on the historic Elm Court property off Old Stockbridge Road is over. Front Yard LLC, which had been working with Denver-based Travaasa Experiential Resorts to develop the site, has placed the 89-acre property on the market for an asking price of $12.5 million. Most of it is in Stockbridge, but 3 acres of road frontage and an entrance are in Lenox. The 13-bedroom, 13-bath mansion occupies 20,851 square feet and has been extensively renovated since Front Yard purchased it in 2012 for $9.8 million from the Berle family, descendants of the original owners. But additional restoration is required. The company was unable to secure financing for the project at a time when the area’s hospitality industry may be overbuilt. Elm Court was embroiled in a lawsuit by neighbors for several years until late in 2017, another major, costly roadblock for the developers.

NJ, Conn. qualify for travel advisory

By Kate Lisa Johnson Newspaper Corp.

Full story at https://www.hudsonvalley360.com/news/publicservicenews/nj-conn-qualify-for-travel-advisory/article_bdacadc8-d1d6-5ec4-8de9-80591dab0b1b.html

ALBANY — New Yorkers should avoid travel to neighboring New Jersey and Connecticut, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said, as visitors from all but six states must isolate for two weeks when arriving in New York to prevent further spread of the novel coronavirus. New Jersey and Connecticut meet the criteria to be required to isolate for two weeks when crossing into New York, but enforcement is impossible, the governor said, as hundreds of out-of-state residents cross borders by driving or taking public transportation for work every day — especially in the downstate metro area and surrounding counties.

Bard closes campus, continues battle to relocate District 5 polling site on campus

Saba Ali Poughkeepsie Journal

Full story at https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/local/2020/10/20/bard-closes-campus-continues-battle-relocate-red-hook-polling-site/5990548002/

Bard College officials are continuing to pursue a lawsuit to move a polling site to the campus, even after closing the campus to visitors.
Bard is part of a group suing the Dutchess County Board of Elections to move the Town of Red Hook District 5 polling site for the Nov. 3 general election from the Episcopal Church of St. John the Evangelist, citing safety concerns amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Monday, the college announced the campus would be closed to anyone who is not a student or employee without permission from the school, citing the changing landscape of the virus’ spread in New York.
Still, college officials say they would welcome voters to the campus if the county Board of Elections does change the polling site, and would do whatever is necessary to ensure the voters’ safety.

Early voting starts on Saturday, New York. Here’s what you need to know

Jon Campbell New York State Team

Full story at https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/politics/albany/2020/10/21/early-voting-new-york-what-to-know/5996614002/

New Yorkers will get the chance to vote early in a presidential election for the first time this year, joining 42 other states that offer voters a chance to cast an in-person ballot prior to Election Day.
Starting Saturday, registered voters can vote in person at a designated early-voting site in their county. The early-voting period runs through Sunday, Nov. 1, two days before Election Day.
New York first began offering early voting in 2019, the result of a package of voting reforms approved by Gov. Andrew Cuomo and a newly Democratic state Legislature earlier in the year.
But 2020 will be the system’s biggest test yet, with a high turnout expected for the race between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden.

Stolen political signs in Otis trouble residents

Heather Bellow The Berkshire Eagle

Full story at https://www.berkshireeagle.com/news/local/stolen-political-signs-in-otis-trouble-residents/article_f837a022-1317-11eb-a43d-e727df781905.html

OTIS — In this southeastern corner of the Berkshires, a place known for its hunting and fishing, leaves have started to disappear from the trees. And so have some political yard signs. A handful of residents here are reporting missing Black Lives Matter and Biden/Harris signs. Someone on last month broke the wooden stakes of a large handmade sign outside a home at the busy intersection routes 8 and 23. The homeowners reported it to State Police and replaced the supports with steel.

Water Main Line Break in Sharon CT

Attention Sharon residents: A water line break on Calkinstown Road in Sharon is being repaired right now. So, it you are on Sharon water, you might experience a loss of water until the repairs are finished. When we receive more information we will pas it along…

A member of the Lee H. Kellogg School community tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19).

And now this news from Region One and COVID-19 Lee H. Kellogg Community:

Dear Region One Families and Staff: We have received notification that a member of the Lee H. Kellogg School community tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19). The affected person has never been in the school building and has had no contact with any staff or students other than the student who is in their care. This individual and the student will remain at home in quarantine according to the direction provided by the Torrington Area Health District. There has been no close contact in the school so there is no need to close classrooms or school. As a reminder, COVID-19 is spread mainly via person-to-person contact through contaminated air droplets from coughing and sneezing by an infected person. As with controlling the spread of other viruses, we urge everyone to discuss the following preventive measures with your children and family members

Salisbury Bank’s Dayna Cook graduates from the Connecticut School of Finance & Management

Lakeville, CT – October 20, 2020 – Dayna Cook, Training Manager at Salisbury Bank, has recently graduated from the Connecticut School of Finance & Management (CSFM), an intensive two-year bank management training program sponsored by the Connecticut Bankers Association. The program provide san opportunity for bank management personnel and other key employees of Connecticut’s banking industry to obtain a more comprehensive knowledge and awareness of the banking business. Dayna started with Salisbury Bank in 2009 as a Deposit Operations Specialist. She then transferred to the Retail Department and became Head Teller at the Sharon, CT Branch in 2010. In 2014 she became a Retail Trainer, and was promoted to Training Manager in 2015.Dayna loves to spend time with her three children, and currently resides in Amenia, NY.

STOCKBRIDGE

Talk to focus onCottage Era Estate bylaw

Property owners and renters are invited to attend a remote presentation Nov. 5 to learn about the town’s Cottage Era Estate bylaw. The discussion, led by author and lecturer Randall Arendt, will focus on conservation zoning strategies involving permanent protection of the town’s rural atmosphere, open space, outdoor recreation and trails. It will begin at 7 p.m. via Zoom. Other topics include clean groundwater resources and approaches to deal with “the effects of more severe storms we’re experiencing,” according to an announcement from Town Administrator Michael Canales. Arendt will share his experience in “creating effective solutions for governments and individuals in developing bylaws that work to address conservation and redevelopment of properties,” the announcement stated. The bylaw sets conditions through which the Select Board can regulate the reuse of Cottage Era Estates in the community. It became a point of contention in recent years when a developer was seeking to transform the former DeSisto School property into a resort and residential complex. Planning Board Chairman William Vogt is urging residents to attend the presentation. “This is an opportunity to learn about Conservation/Open Space Design Zoning, an exciting but not particularly new concept that provides a more environmentally- friendly, town voter designed option to control the future of our town,” Vogt stated. Access information will be provided soon on the town’s website, townofstockbridge.com. For more information, call William Vogt at 413-717-7618.

Lamont to revise state’s travel advisory standards

BY PAUL HUGHES REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

Full story at https://www.rep-am.com/news/news-connecticut/2020/10/19/lamont-to-revise-travel-advisory-standards/

HARTFORD — Gov. Ned Lamont plans to revise the standards for determining if travelers from other states with high COVID-19 rates must quarantine upon arrival in Connecticut. Lamont and top aides explained Monday the metrics for the travel advisory are being changed because the current ones apply so broadly that visitors from almost all 50 states are subject to its requirements as COVID-19 spreads in much of the U.S. At this time, the regional policy developed in conjunction with New York state and New Jersey applies to states that either have more than 10 cases per 100,000 residents, or higher than a 10% positive test rate on a rolling seven-day average.
The revised standards will cover visitors from states that have both more than 10 cases per 100,000 residents and a positivity rate of 5% or higher.
Travelers will be required to quarantine for 14 days unless they have tested negative for the coronavirus within 72 hours of departure. Also, anyone who tests negative after arriving in Connecticut will not have to quarantine for the full two weeks. Lamont said he expects to make a final announcement on the new policy later this week after consultations with New York and New Jersey. He said the governor’s office is also conferring with Massachusetts, Rhode Island and New York City. LAMONT, NEW YORK GOV. ANDREW CUOMO and New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy implemented a tri-state travel advisory on June 24 to limit the spread of COVID-19 to their states.

Cornwall residents form committee to bring fiber optic network to town

BY RUTH EPSTEIN REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

Full story at https://www.rep-am.com/local/localnews/2020/10/19/cornwall-residents-form-committee-to-bring-fiber-optic-network-to-town/

CORNWALL — Frustration nowadays comes in the form of dropped Zoom meetings and cellphone calls that can’t be made. A group has come together to determine how to bring a fiber optic network to town.Acknowledging that the goal can be a challenging one in a town that is rural with homes spread far and wide, members of the Internet Expansion Committee said connectivity is necessary to make a town vibrant. Committee Chairman Gary Steinkohl and member Anna Timell recently spoke about the group, which was formed after the Cornwall Association hosted a forum on the topic last year. At the end of that session, a call went out for a volunteer group to form to look specifically at Cornwall’s needs. A regional grass-roots effort called NorthwestConnECT has been working for several years to see how to address the issue and some inroads have been made.

Connecticut regains 60% of jobs lost during pandemic

Full story at https://www.rep-am.com/local/localnews/2020/10/19/connecticut-regains-60-of-jobs-lost-during-pandemic/

With a net gain of 17,000 jobs in September, the Connecticut economy has recovered 60% of the jobs lost in the COVID-19 pandemic. The state Department of Labor reported a fourth month of job gains, but the rate of job growth continued to slow after June’s gain of 77,300 jobs after the state’s partial shutdown was lifted on May 20. The state entered its third reopening phase on Oct.8. The labor department on Monday reported a preliminary net gain of 17,000 jobs in September, and revised the previously reported August gain of 20,400 jobs to 21,900. The state economy has now regained 176,900 jobs based on the initial September estimate and revised August total.

Long-awaited New York statewide plastic bag ban begins

Isabel Keane Rockland/Westchester Journal News

Full story at https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/local/new-york/2020/10/19/new-york-state-plastic-bag-ban/3713281001/

ALBANY – Gone are the days of single-use plastic bags at New York grocery stores and retailers — the state’s long-awaited plastic bag ban will be imposed today, after being stalled since March, state officials said.
The state Department of Environmental Conservation said it would begin enforcing the ban today, meaning any store offering plastic bags moving forward could face fines. Enforcement of the law, passed by state Legislature in March 2019 and quickly signed into law by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, was delayed, in part because of a lawsuit brought by the plastic bag industry. Poly-Pak Industries of Long Island sued the DEC in mid-March, in an unsuccessful attempt to block the measure, claiming it lacked rational basis and conflicted with other state laws.Implementation of the new law, signed into effect last year, has also been delayed in part because of the coronavirus, which caused court delays that prevented the state from enforcing the ban for the past seven months.

Marijuana home delivery plan goes too far, lawmakers say

Colin A. Young, State House News Service 12 hrs ago

Full story at https://www.berkshireeagle.com/news/state/marijuana-home-delivery-plan-goes-too-far-lawmakers-say/article_7892d3f6-1249-11eb-a8f4-7b1d868d71ed.html

A handful of lawmakers from both sides of the aisle have asked that Massachusetts marijuana regulators scrap the proposed delivery license that would let operators buy marijuana wholesale from cultivators and manufacturers, store it in a warehouse and deliver it to consumers at home.
The Cannabis Control Commission is expected Tuesday morning to consider feedback and hold a final discussion about its draft delivery policy, which would create two distinct delivery license types — a “limited delivery license” that would allow an operator to charge a fee to make deliveries from CCC-licensed retailers and dispensaries, and a “wholesale delivery license.”

GTel seeking tax exemption

By Natasha Vaughn Columbia-Greene Media

Full story at https://www.hudsonvalley360.com/news/columbiacounty/gtel-seeking-tax-exemption/article_3c927860-1e5d-5425-9145-64f76eda0e8c.html

GERMANTOWN — Germantown Telephone Company is seeking a mortgage-tax exemption on a $15 million project that will bring high-speed internet to rural parts of Columbia County. The company had to take out an additional $4 million loan in July for the added cost of replacing existing utility poles that are not suited for the fiber-optic cables needed for the project. The $4 million loan came from the Rural Telephone Finance Cooperative through the state Department of Public Service. Better said 2,600 utility poles have to be replaced for the 293 miles of fiber-optic cables to be installed. This
resulted in an additional $4 million in costs for the project, which now totals more than $15 million.

St John’s Lutheran Church Election Day Luncheon

AT ANCRAM FIRE HOUSE1306 County Route 7November 3, 2020 11:00 – 2:00Chili and corn bread $4.00Hot turkey sandwich $8.00Cold turkey sandwich $5.00Homemade desserts $3.00Beverages $1.00ONLY TAKEOUTS AVAILABLECall Ancram Firehouse – 518-329-2922No ReservationsFIRST COME FIRST SERVE

he story from Columbia County morning newshttps://m.facebook.com/ColumbiaCountyNYCitizenActionNetwork/As of this morning Ghent Assisted Living now has 24 positive case, 10 hospitalized, 2 ICU and one resident past away.Also the County has now separated Brookwood Secure Center and Columbia CenterBrookwood reports 2 staff tested positive, while Columbia Center is reporting 5 youth and 4 staff members testing positive.There are also 10 additional staff at the two centers that live out of Columbia County also testing Positive for Covid19.WTEN

A teacher Sharon Center School has tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19). October 19, 2020

Dear Region One Families and Staff:Today we received notification that a middle school teacher at Sharon Center School has tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19). Due to consistent mask wearing, social distancing, and other precautions in place, the likelihood of the spread of Covid-19 from this person is low. In consultation with the Sharon Health Department, the Region One Medical Advisor, and according to CDC guidance, Sharon Center School middle school (grades 5-8), will be closed beginning today through Thursday October 29th so that impacted students and staff can appropriately quarantine. In person classes will resume on Friday, October 30th. Sharon Center School middle school students will begin distance learning on Wednesday October 21st.The Sharon Center School middle school teacher is an individual who has had significant contact with middle school students, but limited contact with other middle school staff, and no contact with elementary school students and staff. All significant contacts of the Covid-19 positive person have been notified and instructed to quarantine for 14 days. Principal Dr. Manning has been identified as a direct contact with the affected individual and will also be in quarantine for fourteen days working remotely. Plans for the opening of Sharon Center School, grades K – 4 will be determined by theend of business tomorrow after full cleaning, preparation for remote learning, and a full assessment of the situation are completed.As many of you may know, the number of new cases of Covid-19 nationally and particularly in Litchfield County have risen significantly in the last 1-2 weeks. As a reminder, COVID-19 is spread mainly via person-to-person contact through contaminated air droplets from coughing and sneezing by an infected person. We urge everyone to continue to follow preventive measures with your children and family members:● Wash your hands frequently, but especially after using the restroom and before preparing or consuming food. Using soap and hot water, wash for about 20 seconds. Be sure to also wash your fingertips. When soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer.● Avoid coughing or sneezing into your hands or in the air. Always try to cough or sneeze into a tissue, then throw the tissue away. If you don’t have a tissue, cough/sneeze inside theelbow of your arm.● As much as you can, avoid touching your eyes, mouth, and nose.● Wear a face covering (mask) whenever there is a likelihood that you or your family members will be in the presence of others.● Maintain social distancing (at least 6 feet) between yourself and others when outside of your home.Below is the list of COVID-19 symptoms for which everyone should monitor in their family members:❑ Fever (100.4° Fahrenheit or higher)❑ Chills or shaking chills❑ Uncontrolled new cough (not due to other known cause, such as chronic cough)❑ Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath❑ New loss of taste or smell❑ Congestion and cold-like symptomsFor additional information on COVID-19 symptoms, please see: https://www.cdc.gov/…/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html Staff and students exhibiting any of the above symptoms, or feeling ill, should remain home andcall their medical provider to report their symptoms and ask about testing prior to seeking in-person care at a clinic, physician’s office, or hospital.We thank you all for continuing to be vigilant about daily screening, for following the safety guidelines and for communicating any concerns as they arise. If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.Sincerely,Lisa B. CarterInterim Superintendent

This latest COVID-19 update from Geer Village thru the office of our Representative Maria Horn:

UPDATE 12:30PM: State Representative Maria Horn just spoke with the Geer CEO. The staff test results are in, which resulted in one additional positive, also in the assisted living dementia unit where 9 of 11 positive resident tests originated. (The other two resident positives (reported earlier) are from a married couple in an independent apartment.) They will be doing another round of testing this week, of both residents and staff.

Trooper wears dad’s badge –
Baldwin completes training course, joins Troop B in Canaan

BY BRIGITTE RUTHMAN REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

Full story at https://republicanamerican-ct.newsmemory.com/?token=3171468320

CANAAN — While his older brothers were content to pursue careers in construction, Nick Baldwin was dazzled early on by his father’s comings and goings in uniform, his cruiser and the crackling of its radio.
He learned about the rewards of public service from two generations before him, and saw the heartache of tragedy in his father’s eyes.
Still, he wanted all of it. He got it last week after becoming one of 83 newly minted troopers — several of whom were “legacy” trainees following in a parent’s footsteps — to complete a rigorous seven-month training course.
After graduating, he requested and was given his father’s badge number, 651. He was assigned to Troop B, where his father, William Baldwin, began his career in 1987 and later returned as a lieutenant in command.

Board will eye affordable housing proposal Falls Village application seeks to build 16 units on 10-acre site

BY RUTH EPSTEIN REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

Full story at https://republicanamerican-ct.newsmemory.com/?token=3171468320

Video at https://vimeo.com/468386177

FALLS VILLAGE — After three lengthy sessions of a hearing on the proposed River Road Homes affordable housing development, the Planning and Zoning Commission has closed public comment and will deliberate the issue at its meeting Thursday.

How New York wants to determine who gets a COVID-19 vaccine and when

Jon Campbell New York State Team

Full story at https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/politics/albany/2020/10/18/how-new-york-would-pick-who-gets-covid-19-vaccine-and-when/3702922001/

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Sunday unveiled a draft plan to distribute an eventual coronavirus vaccine to high-risk populations and health care workers first, though its implementation will depend on how the federal government decides to act. Cuomo, a Democrat, laid out a six-level system for determining who gets a vaccine and when, prioritizing those who have underlying conditions that make them more susceptible to COVID-19’s effects and those who work in health care settings. But Cuomo’s system is based on the assumption President Donald Trump’s administration won’t place conditions on vaccine distribution that could throw off New York’s plan, which the governor acknowledged is an unanswered question. The National Governors Association, which Cuomo chairs, sent a series of 36 questions Sunday to the White House to try to get more information about the federal government’s plans for distribution, Cuomo said.

On Saturday, October 17, a group of community leaders met to discuss the new positive COVID-19 cases that have emerged at Hotchkiss, Geer Village and within the Region One School system. The purpose of the meeting was to share information and to ensure consistency of communication with the public. The Zoom call, organized by State Representative Maria Horn, included the following individuals who represented the institutions and the towns most directly impacted by the emergence of the new COVID-19 cases:


Craig Bradley, Head of School, The Hotchkiss School
Lisa Carter, Interim Superintendent, Region One School District
Hope Cobera, Chief Communications Officer, The Hotchkiss School
Brent Colley, First Selectman, Sharon
Mark Hirko, President, Sharon Hospital
Maria Horn, Connecticut State Representative, 64th District
Kevin O’Connell, CEO Geer Village Senior Community
Charlie Perotti, First Selectman, North Canaan
Curtis Rand, First Selectman, Salisbury
Robert Rubbo, Director of Health, Torrington Area Health District
Jared Zelman, Medical Director, The Hotchkiss School

As of Sunday:

Geer Village – Geer employees and residents have been tested since the onset of the virus last spring. There have been no cases until this week when 6 members and 11 residents tested positive as a result of routine testing. All COVID-19-positive residents have been isolated and staff have been identified and quarantined. Torrington Area Health District has completed contact tracing and everyone who is a direct contact has been notified. Regular weekly testing of staff and residents will continue to ensure that any new cases are quickly captured and isolated. There are no visitors allowed and no one may enter the facility without testing negative for the virus.

The Hotchkiss School -All students and student-facing faculty and staff were tested prior to the start of the school year. Upon arrival, all students participated in a two-week quarantine in their dormitory rooms (or at home in the case of day students). During this period, students were tested by the School, and one student tested positive. That student and close contacts (also students) were isolated from the rest of the school population or sent home. There have been no other positive cases until this week, when four students tested positive during weekly routine surveillance testing. Those students and any close contacts have been isolated and quarantined at Hotchkiss or, in the case of students who can travel via private transportation, they have returned to their homes. At this moment, all positive cases and any close contacts are all students, and no adults have been affected.

Region One Schools – There has been a total of four positive cases in Region One. One staff member in the Cornwall school district tested positive in the late summer and three individuals tested positive last week in the North Canaan School district. All three of those cases were connected to one another. The individuals have been quarantined and all close contacts have been notified and tested. The North Canaan Elementary School has not closed, nor have any classrooms been quarantined. There was only one close contact at HVRHS as a result of this recent case. That individual has been quarantined and has tested negative.

Sharon Hospital – As a result of the rise in cases, Sharon Hospital has closed entrances so that all patients enter through the Emergency Services entrance. No visitors are allowed and all testing is reserved for those who are being screened for medical procedures. The Hospital is seeking to expand its testing capacity in the future; however tests are in short supply and more funding is needed at the federal level to increase test production.

Massachusetts postpones start of jury trials to early November

  • By The Berkshire Eagle

Full story at https://www.berkshireeagle.com/news/local/massachusetts-postpones-start-of-jury-trials-to-early-november/article_b33d8c4e-1082-11eb-9a27-efbd66a6c74d.html

BOSTON — The starting date for jury trials in Massachusetts courts has been pushed back until early next month. On Friday, Paula M. Carey, the state’s Trial Court chief justice, announced that the earliest that jury trials in state court can start has been extended to Nov. 9. In September, the Supreme Judicial Court — it’s the state’s highest court — had authorized Phase 1 in the resumption of jury trials to begin no earlier than Oct. 23. Courts have been working toward gradually resuming jury trials. A limited number of six-person-jury trials are called for initially, in designated courtrooms, per a report issued by the Jury Management Advisory Committee.

This summary concerning the COVID-19 infections recently was released to Robin Hood Radio by Maria Horn and Brent Colley on Saturday evening:

Update on news of recent COVID CasesOn Saturday, October 17, a group of community leaders met to discuss the new positive COVID-19 cases that have emerged at Hotchkiss, Geer Village and within the Region One School system. The purpose of the meeting was to share information and to ensure consistency of communication with the public. The Zoom call, organized by State Representative Maria Horn, included the following individuals who represented the institutions and the towns most directly impacted by the emergence of the new COVID-19 cases:Craig Bradley, Head of School, The Hotchkiss SchoolLisa Carter, Interim Superintendent, Region One School District Hope Cobera, Chief Communications Officer, The Hotchkiss SchoolBrent Colley, First Selectman, SharonMark Hirko, President, Sharon HospitalMaria Horn, Connecticut State Representative, 64th DistrictKevin O’Connell, CEO Geer Village Senior CommunityCharlie Perotti, First Selectman, North CanaanCurtis Rand, First Selectman, SalisburyRobert Rubbo, Director of Health, Torrington Area Health DistrictJared Zelman, Medical Director, The Hotchkiss SchoolThis letter provides notes from that meeting and is an accurate statement about the current COVID-19 situation in our towns. A summary of the discussion by institution is noted below. The representative from each of the institutions that has recently experienced new COVID-19 cases provided information about their current situation to the other members of the group, who were able to ask questions:Geer Village – Geer employees and residents have been tested since the onset of the virus last spring. There have been no cases until this week when 6 members and 11 residents tested positive as a result of routine testing. All COVID-19-positive residents have been isolated and staff have been identified and quarantined. Torrington Area Health District has completed contact tracing and everyone who is a direct contact has been notified. Regular weekly testing of staff and residents will continue to ensure that any new cases are quickly captured and isolated. There are no visitors allowed and no one may enter the facility without testing negative for the virus. The Hotchkiss School -All students and student-facing faculty and staff were tested prior to the start of the school year. Upon arrival, all students participated in a two-week quarantine in their dormitory rooms (or at home in the case of day students). During this period, students were tested by the School, and one student tested positive. That student and close contacts (also students) were isolated from the rest of the school population or sent home. There have been no other positive cases until this week, when four students tested positive during weekly routine surveillance testing. Those students and any close contacts have been isolated and quarantined at Hotchkiss or, in the case of students who can travel via private transportation, they have returned to their homes. At this moment, all positive cases and any close contacts are all students, and no adults have been affected. Over the weekend, all students and student-facing employees will be tested. Any newly identified cases will be isolated on campus or in their homes off campus. Until this testing can be conducted, all students are under quarantine in their dorm rooms. Classes are being held remotely, and day students are learning from home. Only absolutely essential staff are allowed on campus. This campus quarantine will continue until the all-campus testing is completed and any remaining incidence of the virus has been identified. Going forward, all-School testing will be conducted every week. As part of the School’s ongoing safety protocols, no students have been allowed to leave campus at any time to participate in travel sports teams, visit town, or for any other reason since the start of the school year. Visits to campus by parents are also highly restricted. Region One Schools – There has been a total of four positive cases in Region One. One staff member in the Cornwall school district tested positive in the late summer and three individuals tested positive last week in the North Canaan School district. All three of those cases were connected to one another. The individuals have been quarantined and all close contacts have been notified and tested. The North Canaan Elementary School has not closed, nor have any classrooms been quarantined. There was only one close contact at HVRHS as a result of this recent case. That individual has been quarantined and has tested negative. Sharon Hospital – As a result of the rise in cases, Sharon Hospital has closed entrances so that all patients enter through the Emergency Services entrance. No visitors are allowed and all testing is reserved for those who are being screened for medical procedures. The Hospital is seeking to expand its testing capacity in the future; however tests are in short supply and more funding is needed at the federal level to increase test production.Everyone on the call agreed that the situation at each of the institutions where positive virus cases have emerged has been contained. Any new cases that are identified at The Hotchkiss School over the next week may represent the outcome of increased testing rather than concerning community spread. Any increase at Geer Village in the coming days is expected to be in relation to those cases already identified and will not represent an increase in new cases from another source. Given this, the medical and public health professionals on the call concluded that pre-existing recommendations about testing should remain unchanged: if you are symptomatic, or if you have been exposed to someone who has tested positive, you should be tested. Social distancing, the use of face coverings and frequent hand washing continue to be the best way to prevent any new cases of the virus. Region One schools will continue to practice all of the mitigation strategies including social distancing, the use of face coverings and frequent hand washing to continue to prevent any new cases of the virus within its schools. The participants in the meeting all agreed to share contact information and will share any communication with regard to any new cases this week and in the future. We want to ensure that there is broad community awareness of the public health situation as well as a collaborative and consistent approach with regard to a response to new cases.We hope that by sharing this information, our community members will understand that while we have experienced an increase in positive cases in our area, they have been confined to identifiable clusters that are being closely monitored and managed to ensure everyone’s safety and good health. Please reach out to any of us with your questions or concerns. Thank you everyone for your efforts to keep our community safe during this extremely difficult time.

Sheffield’s Jim Wilkinson inducted into Eastern Snowmobile Racing Hall of Fame

By Mike Walsh, The Berkshire Eagle

Full story at https://www.berkshireeagle.com/sports/local_sports/sheffields-jim-wilkinson-inducted-into-eastern-snowmobile-racing-hall-of-fame/article_1c5a8ca6-0e88-11eb-a007-73ada3d975c9.html

Snowmobiles weren’t very popular some 55 years ago, but a young Jim Wilkinson thought they looked like fun. Somewhat against his family’s wishes, the 21-year-old Wilkinson bought an old, used sled and set about fixing it up, learning as much as he could as fast as he could. “There was a race in Great Barrington,” Wilkinson, now in his late 70s, said. “That was one of the first races, in 1965 I think, in Great Barrington, probably the Kiwanis put it on. I went to it as just an independent, had a snowmobile I was fooling with, and I won the race. That started the whole thing.” This fall, Wilkinson was inducted into the Eastern Snowmobile Racing Hall of Fame in Lancaster, N.H. It’s an honor he’s a bit shy about, but one that is a culmination of a lifelong passion and the friendships that came with it.

Robin Hood Radio has learned that Geer Village in North Canaan sent a memo out indicating that Geer Village had a staff member test positive for COVID-19 on October 12.

A full testing regimen followed that found seven out of 21 residents in the memory care unit at Geer Village have tested positive, and 4 residents of Geer Village tested positive as well. Five additional Geer Village staff also tested positive. Strict guidelines have been implemented where no staff is shared between Geer Village and Geer Nursing and Rehab, residents are temporary quarantined to their rooms, and addition ongoing testing will be carried out. PPE has been handed out to the staff as well. Lok for a full story tomorrow in the Republican-American, or on-line at https://rep-am.com

Movie theaters can start limited reopening in some parts of NY. Here’s the plan

Joseph SpectorNew York State Team

Full story at https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/politics/albany/2020/10/17/movie-theaters-ny-opening-allowed/3694119001/

ALBANY – New York will start allowing movie theaters to reopen with limited capacity Oct. 23 in areas of the state where COVID-19 rates are low, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Saturday. Theaters will be able to reopen outside New York City in counties that are below a 2% infection rate on a 14-day average and have no COVID hot spots, which would rule out Rockland and Orange counties, as well as 10 upstate counties. Theaters will be allowed to reopen at 25% capacity with up to 50 people per screen. The announcement comes after movie theaters have been pressing to reopen in New York, where infection rate is among the lowest in the nation.

In addition to Rockland and Orange counties, these counties will NOT be allowed to reopen their theaters: 

  • Allegany
  • Broome
  • Cattaraugus
  • Chautauqua
  • Chemung
  • Cortland
  • Greene
  • Schuyler
  • Steuben
  • Tioga

Sharon Hospital entry points, testing, and visitation changes effective 10/16/2020

SHARON, Connecticut, October 16, 2020 — Today, Sharon Hospital learned about a cluster of COVID-19 cases within Connecticut’s northwest corner, including the towns of Canaan and Salisbury. At this time, there are no COVID-19 positive patients at Sharon Hospital. Out of an abundance of caution and to safeguard our patients and staff, effective October 16, 2020, Sharon Hospital has limited its open entrances, expanded COVID-19 testing hours, and limited visitation.Sharon Hospital entry pointsSharon Hospital’s front main entrance on Hospital Hill Road is closed until further notice. All individuals must use the Emergency Department (ED) to enter Sharon Hospital. All individuals will be screened for risk factors of COVID-19 at the entrance of the ED.COVID-19 testing at Sharon HospitalSharon Hospital is expanding its COVID-19 testing hours during the outbreak period in the community. COVID-19 testing is available for individuals at:Sharon Hospital, Lab Patient Services Center, 50 Hospital Hill Road, Sharon, CT 06069, First FloorHours of operation: Monday–Friday, 10–3pm; Saturday, 7:15–11:15amTo schedule an appointment, please call 845-790-8855. Appointments are recommended but walk-ins are welcome.What you need to bring to get a COVID-19 test at Sharon Hospital: Government-issued photo ID (examples: driver’s license, passport)Insurance card (if you have one)Physician order (prescription) for the COVID-19 test. Your healthcare clinician, such as a primary care physician, will tell you if you need to bring a paper order with you or if it will be submitted electronically. If you don’t have a physician order when you arrive for a test, we’ll make arrangements for you to have testing done. You’ll need to then follow up with your healthcare clinician to review the results. If you don’t have a healthcare clinician, call 888-525-4767, Monday–Friday, 7am–6pm, to be connected with a Nuvance Health primary care physician near you.Wear a medical face maskIt may take up to 48 hours to get your test results back. Your healthcare clinician will notify you of the results. You can also access your results through the Nuvance Health patient portal here: https://patients.healthquest.org/the-myhq247-patient-portalr more information about COVID-19 testing at Sharon Hospital, please visit https://patients.healthquest.org/covid-19-testingVisitation at Sharon HospitalNo visitors are permitted for any patients at Sharon Hospital unless extenuating circumstances apply. Please review the full visitation policy at https://patients.healthquest.org/covid-19-update

Here is an update on the COVID-19 cases at Hotchkiss School:

Four Students tested positive for COVID-19Two students left the school to head home (foreign students)Two students remain on campus following strict CDC quarantine criteria. Hotchkiss has had in place a strict ongoing testing policy for those on campus.

COVID Positive Case Notice – NCES

October 16, 2020

Dear Region One Families and Staff:Today we received notification that a member of the North Canaan Elementary School community tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19). The affected person has not been in the school building since last Friday, October 9 and therefore has had no contact with any students or staff. This individual will remain at home in quarantine according to the direction provided by the Torrington Area Health District. There is no need to close classrooms or school. As a reminder, COVID-19 is spread mainly via person-to-person contact through contaminated air droplets from coughing and sneezing by an infected person. As with controlling the spread of other viruses, we urge everyone to discuss the following preventive measures with your children and family members:● Wash your hands frequently, but especially after using the restroom and before preparing or consuming food. Using soap and hot water, wash for about 20 seconds. Be sure to also wash your fingertips. When soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer.● Avoid coughing or sneezing into your hands or in the air. Always try to cough or sneeze into a tissue, then throw the tissue away. If you don’t have a tissue, cough/sneeze inside theelbow of your arm.● As much as you can, avoid touching your eyes, mouth, and nose.● Wear a face covering (mask) whenever there is a likelihood that you or your family members will be in the presence of others.● Maintain social distancing (at least 6 feet) between yourself and others when outside of your home.Below is the list of COVID-19 symptoms for which everyone should monitor in their family members:❑ Fever (100.4° Fahrenheit or higher)❑ Chills or shaking chills❑ Uncontrolled new cough (not due to other known cause, such as chronic cough)❑ Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath❑ New loss of taste or smellFor additional information on COVID-19 symptoms, please see: https://www.cdc.gov/…/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html Staff and students exhibiting any of the above symptoms, or feeling ill, should remain home and call their medical provider to report their symptoms and ask about testing prior to seeking in-person care at a clinic, physician’s office, or hospital.We thank you all for continuing to be vigilant about daily screening, for following the safety guidelines and for communicating any concerns as they arise. If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Sincerely,Lisa B. Carter Interim Superintendent

Bail denied in Dalton hay bale torching

BY AMANDA B URKE The Berkshire Eagle

Full story at https://berkshireeagle-ma.newsmemory.com/

PITTSFIELD — Noting arson’s historic role in political intimidation, a judge Friday ordered a Dalton man held without bail as he faces charges of burning a 15-foot stack of wrapped hay bales bearing a Joe Biden-Kamala Harris endorsement. Arson has a role “in our history of intimidation both political and with civil rights, and I find the nature of your crime also weighs in holding you without the right to bail,” said Judge Paul Smyth, addressing the defendant, Lonnie Durfee. Smyth ruled that Deputy District Attorney successfully argued that no conditions of pretrial release could ensure the safety of the public from Durfee, who stands accused of burning personal property in the Oct. 9 fire at Holiday Brook Farm in Dalton.The judge said Durfee’s record of criminal convictions, multiple restraining orders, and history of violence with police and civilians also bore weight in his decision to deny his release before trial. He ordered Durfee held for up to 120 days, though his defense lawyer said it could be longer due to coronavirus court delays.

Norfolk Artisans Guild to shut down

BY SHAW ISRAEL IZIKSON Winsted Phoenix

Full story at http://winstedphoenix.org/index.php/2020/10/16/norfolk-artisans-guild-to-shut-down/?fbclid=IwAR0LqwHVv3VWvxk-0C3TWY59VdLVgetYda7-pJ-WdP2YTKrBMBDPF_lzIFU

NORFOLK — More than 27 years after it was founded, the Norfolk Artisans Guild, located at 10 Station Place, will be shutting down in December.
The Guild’s store is located at 10 Station Place and is co-owned by Vee Kausel and Kathy Williams.
In an interview with The Winsted Phoenix, Kausel said that business has been slow this year. Kausel added that she is somewhat hopeful that someone may offer to take over the store for both her and Williams down the line.
But until then Kausel said that the Guild is making plans to have a booth at the Winter Weekend in Norfolk, which is typically held in February but as of right now the 2021 edition of the event has not been scheduled. The store will officially close on Friday, Dec. 11.Hours of the store until Monday, Nov. 30 are Wednesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday 12 p.m to 4 p.m. Starting on Tuesday, Dec. 1, the store will be open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. until its final scheduled day of operation on December 11.
For more information call 860-542-5055

Pawling consolidation vote Nov. 30; how governments are informing voters

Katelyn Cordero Poughkeepsie Journal

Full story at https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/local/2020/10/16/pawling-consolidation-vote-nov-30-report-inform-voters/3646089001/

On Nov. 30, voters will decide if the village and town of Pawling should work together to consolidate the government. The vote, prompted by a petition of nearly 800 signatures filed July 31, has been met with differing opinions from residents and officials. But what consolidation would mean for them is still unknown, Town Supervisor James Schmitt said. That’s why a report detailing its potential impact is in the works, and will be released online and sent to residents during the first week of November.

Dutchess Legislature seeks residents to serve on committees, boards

A.J. Martelli Poughkeepsie Journal

Full story at https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/local/2020/10/16/dutchess-county-legislature-seeks-residents-serve-committees-boards/3682921001/

The Dutchess County Legislature is looking for residents to serve on several local committees and boards. The Fish and Wildlife Management Board, the Human Rights Commission, the Resource Recovery Agency, the Tick Task Force, the Veterans Affairs Committee and the 2020 Reapportionment Commission are in need of citizens willing to serve, according to a release from the county
The Fish and Wildlife Management board is seeking a landowner representative for a two-year term. The board meets at 7:30 p.m. on the third Wednesday in the months of March, June, September and December. The Human Rights Commission, which meets as necessary, is looking for a member to serve a three-year term. The commission’s aim is to “foster mutual respect and understanding” of all racial, religious and nationality groups in the county.

Motorcyclist suffers life-threatening injuries in Goshen crash

Full story at https://www.rep-am.com/local/localnews/2020/10/16/motorcyclist-suffers-life-threatening-injuries-in-goshen-crash/

 A motorcyclist suffered life-threatening injuries Thursday in a crash on Route 4 in Goshen. The driver, a male, was injured when he was thrown from his motorcycle in front of AJ’s Steak and Pizza restaurant shortly after 3 p.m. He was flown to Hartford Hospital by Life Star helicopter. The injured man was treated at the scene by Goshen Fire Company EMTs and a paramedic from Campion Ambulance in Torrington before being taken by a Goshen ambulance to a field at the intersection of Route 4 and East Street North, where Life Star landed. No other information on the accident was available Thursday night.

Connecticut Coronavirus Updates: Positivity rate jumps back up to 2.4%

Full story at https://www.wfsb.com/news/coronavirus-updates-positivity-rate-jumps-back-up-to-2-4/article_02b0324c-0406-11eb-b10f-2352d8d4314c.html

On Friday, there were 62,830 coronavirus cases reported, up 802 since Thursday. Out of 33,048 tests administered, 802 came back positive. That leaves a positivity rate of 2.4 percent. There were 2 new coronavirus-related death reported on Friday, bringing the total since the start of the pandemic at 4,542. Hospitalizations decreased by 7, bringing the total to 184. The number of tests performed since the beginning of the pandemic is now at 1,965,112, an increase of 33,048 since Thursday.

New superintendent takes reins in Germantown


By Natasha Vaughn
Columbia-Greene Media


Full story at https://www.hudsonvalley360.com/news/columbiacounty/new-superintendent-takes-reins-in-germantown/article_cdfc36d4-da49-5b9e-8ae9-d6b877f50


Benjamin F. Bragg is the new superintendent of the Germantown Central School District.Bragg, the principal of Catskill High School, will take over beginning Nov. 7. He will succeed Susan Brown, who will retire at the end of October.Brown was appointed superintendent in 2013. She served as the principal at the district’s elementary school since 2005. Bragg, 48, said he wants to be visible in the schools. He wants to get to know everyone’s name and learn something special about each of them.

10 Tony nods go to three Williamstown-originated shows

Full story at https://www.berkshireeagle.com/arts_and_culture/10-tony-nods-go-to-three-williamstown-originated-shows/article_a56b9cb4-0fc4-11eb-87ff-f37e40cf24ed.html

NEW YORK — Ten Tony Award nominations have gone to three productions — “The Sound Inside,” “Grand Horizons” and “The Rose Tattoo” — that originated at Williamstown Theatre Festival. Adam Rapp’s “The Sound Inside” — produced at Williamstown July 2018 — and Beth Wohl’s “Grand Horizons” — produced at Williamstown July 2019 — are among five nominees for best production of a play. “The Sound Inside” also earned nominations for Mary-Louise Parker (leading role by an actress in a play) for her performance as an accomplished Ivy League university professor who becomes connected to a talented if also enigmatic student; David Cromer (direction of a play); Heather Gilbert (lighting of a play); Daniel Kluger (sound design of a play, and also best original score written for the theater).

COVID exposure found at upstate New York casino

Joseph Spector New York State Team

Full story at https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/2020/10/16/covid-exposure-found-upstate-new-york-casino/3676459001/

ALBANY – A person who recently visited the Yellow Brick Road Casino in central New York has tested positive for COVID-19, local officials said. The Madison County Health Department said Thursday the individual visited the Oneida Nation casino in Chittenango on Sunday, Oct. 11 between 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. The customer was wearing a mask, the health department said in a news release. The health department said, “Anyone who visited this location during the identified times should monitor themselves for symptoms of COVID-19.”  “Those symptoms include fever, cough, chills, muscle pain, sore throat, new loss of taste or smell, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea, and/or difficulty breathing.”  The county said that if symptoms develop, a sick person should stay home and contact a doctor for guidance on testing. In the event of an emergency, call 911. “It is important that residents remain diligent and continue to do their part to limit the spread of COVID-19,” the health department said.  “Please protect yourself and others by wearing a face covering when you are out in public, especially when you are unable to maintain social distancing.” The three Oneida Nation casinos in central New York, including its flagship Turning Stone in Verona, reopened in June after being shuttered in March amid the pandemic.

Hayes’ campaign reported Zoom-bomber to feds, police

U.S. Rep. Jahana Hayes’ campaign reported Monday’s Zoom bombing incident that happened during a discussion with Newtown Democrats to the U.S. Capitol Police and Newtown police, and they have also spoken to the FBI, a campaign official said. During the virtual meeting, Hayes, D-Wolcott, became the subject of racial epithets 10 minutes into the meeting. Hayes’ campaign posted screen shots of her Zoom call with Newtown voters that showed a man identified as Kenneth Rubio posting “Shut up (n-word) go pick your cotton” in all capital letters at least 10 times.

Putting off your NY auto inspection? You have until Nov. 3 to get it done

Jon Campbell New York State Team

Full story at https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/politics/albany/2020/10/16/new-york-wont-push-auto-inspection-expiration-past-nov-3/3670676001/

Motorists who let their annual vehicle inspection lapse during the COVID-19 pandemic will have to get their cars inspected by Nov. 3 to comply with New York law. Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued an executive order Thursday making clear the state would not further extend the deadline for expired inspections, which he previously allowed to remain valid during the height of the coronavirus outbreak. The order declares Cuomo’s most recent extension will be his last one, meaning motorists whose inspections expired after March 1 have until Nov. 3 to get them done and avoid being ticketed. The same deadline applies for expired driver’s licenses and vehicle registrations, though Cuomo had previously declared he wouldn’t extend those deadlines past Nov. 3. Cuomo’s decision means the state’s roughly 10,000 inspections shops could see a crush of customers in the coming weeks.

Noble Horizons’ high rating


SALISBURY — The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announce
it has again awarded the rare 5-Star designation to Noble
horizons. The perfect score makes Noble Horizons one of
the highest-rated senior communities in the region and one
of only a select few to be awarded 5-stars in the Eastern New
York, Western Massachusetts, or Western Connecticut region.
CMS utilizes three vital standards of care when calculating
their star ratings: staffing, the quality of care, and data collected from health inspections. Noble Horizons excelled in all three categories, and most importantly in how much time their registered nurses dedicate
to each resident on a daily basis. Noble Horizons has remained COVID-free.

First meeting of state’s COVID-19 Vaccine Advisory Group held Thursday

Full story at https://www.wfsb.com/news/first-meeting-of-states-covid-19-vaccine-advisory-group-set-for-today/article_47b1721a-0f10-11eb-85ec-df90ed1629b6.html

The first meeting of the state’s COVID-19 Vaccine Advisory Group took take place on Thursday. Gov. Ned Lamont attended the meeting, which will happened virtually starting at 6 p.m. Lamont announced the creation of the advisory group last month following a meeting with the vice president’s Coronavirus Task Force.

Members of the advisory group are charged with the task of advising the governor on preparations for a potential COVID-19 vaccine, “including the optimization of a statewide vaccine distribution strategy, and communicating critical medical information about the vaccine with the state’s residents.”

CEDC reflects on successes, looks to uncertain future


By Natasha Vaughn Columbia-Greene Media

Full story at https://www.hudsonvalley360.com/news/columbiacounty/cedc-reflects-on-successes-looks-to-uncertain-future/article_59bd8017-cde7-50ca-9f80-a5b3709ae74a.html


HUDSON — The Columbia Economic Development Corporation reflected on its 2019 successes as a help during the current pandemic. Members and speakers at the CEDC’s virtual annual meeting Wednesday took a look at the progress the CEDC made in the last year. They talked about the impact COVID has had on the local economy and on local businesses. Columbia County had the lowest unemployment rate of any New York county in 2019, averaging 3.1% unemployment, CEDC president and CEO F. Michael Tucker said Thursday.

Berkshire Museum selected to participate in national school readiness project

Full story at https://www.berkshireeagle.com/news/local/berkshire-museum-selected-to-participate-in-national-school-readiness-project/article_af023eea-0ef2-11eb-a5dd-b3546891a049.html

The Building a National Network of Museums and Libraries for School Readiness project advances state work on behalf of children, families and communities, according to a news release from the Berkshire Museum. The effort is part of an agreement with the Institute of Museum and Library Services awarded to Boston Children’s Museum to expand its existing school readiness.

The Falls Village Planning and Zoning Commission voted to close the public hearing on the River Road affordable housing development site plan.

The Commission will begin deliberations at the next regular meeting on Thursday, October 22 at 7PM.Full video of the meeting available at https://vimeo.com/468386177

Mass. man run over by excavator near railroad tracks

BY BRIGITTE RUTHMAN REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

Full story at https://republicanamerican-ct.newsmemory.com/?token=6056501788

CANAAN — A 59-year-old man from Monterey, Mass., working to replace a section of tracks died Wednesday after being run over by an excavator. North Canaan Fire Chief Brian D. Allyn said emergency services were summoned at about 2:45 p.m. to a section of railway adjacent to a crossing along Route 44 at Gandolfo Drive. A crew from Housatonic Railroad was at work when Warren Thomson was in a blind area unseen by an equipment operator. Emergency medical responders already were on scene when firefighters arrived. The town’s ambulance garage is located a few steps from the incident location.
A Life Star helicopter was called and landed at Sharon Hospital, but it did not transport the victim. Thomson was taken by North Canaan Ambulance to Sharon Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. State police, who also responded to the scene, are conducting an investigation along with the Federal Railroad Administration, which is sending its own investigators, state police Lt. Seth Mancini said.

Town awarded $2.35M grant to create new sidewalks

Full story at https://rep-am.com

The town has been awarded a $2.35 million federal Transportation Alternatives Program grant to create new sidewalks on three streets in town, Kent First Selectman Jean Speck said Tuesday. Road foreman Rick Osborne said the grant application specifies the construction of new sidewalks will be on South Main Street, Maple Street to the Stuart Farms Apartments and Lane Street. He noted the new grant could “free up bond money” for the overall sidewalk replacement project and suggested the town consider replacing the sidewalks on Elizabeth Street. The Streetscape Building Committee asked the selectmen to approve purchasing materials to qualify for partial reimbursement from a state grant that must be used before the end of the year. Selectman Edward Matson said the expenses won’t be high enough to use all of the $500,000 grant in time. Instead, it will be less than $100,000. Osborne said he expects the granite curbing to cost $55,000 and the gravel $15,000.

Red Hook polling location to stay at church despite distancing concerns

Saba Ali Poughkeepsie Journal

Full story at https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/local/2020/10/14/red-hook-polling-site-church-covid-concerns/3653649001/

Red Hook’s fifth district polling location will remain at the Episcopal Church of St. John the Evangelist, following a Dutchess County Supreme Court decision Tuesday. Judge Maria Rosa denied an Article 78 petition commenced on Sept. 4 by, among other parties, Bard College officials, noting there would not be enough time for the Dutchess County Board of Elections to adequately inform voters of the location change.It was made despite church officials stating the space cannot support “an adequately safe environment for the poll workers as well as the voters” amid the COVID-19 pandemic.Dutchess County Republican Elections Commissioner Erik Haight praised the decision, stating “the rule of law has prevailed.”Bard’s president along with campus officials, a student and The Andrew Goodman Foundation, a social justice organization, sued the county Board of Elections to have the location moved onto its campus for the Nov. 3 general election, citing safety issues and that the church was seen as not being handicapped accessible.

Great Barrington residents chafe at town name on COVID-19 policy declaration

By Heather Bellow, The Berkshire Eagle

Full story at https://www.berkshireeagle.com/news/local/great-barrington-residents-chafe-at-town-name-on-covid-19-policy-declaration/article_52d3f6e4-0e67-11eb-a45d-8f016d907ba4.html

GREAT BARRINGTON — Circulate a proposal that challenges public health policy amid a pandemic, and you’ll get an international scolding — especially when the White House embraces it. And if you name what critics call a “fringe” document after the town in which it was kindled, watch out — townspeople are coming for you. That’s the state of things a week after three scientists wrote and signed the Great Barrington Declaration at a libertarian think tank off Division Street, and launched it around the world for signatures. Some Great Barrington residents are none too pleased. They say they plan to take up the matter with Town Hall, perhaps by petition, or perhaps urge a rebuttal declaration. They’d like to see the town’s name stripped from the document.
Susan Pettee is one who said so on HillGB, a neighborhood email group that exploded with outrage this week. The three authors of the declaration, suggest that allowing the young, strong and healthy to live normally will help achieve faster what’s known as herd immunity, which would better protect the vulnerable in the long run. The authors of the declaration are Dr. Martin Kulldorff, of Harvard University; Dr. Sunetra Gupta, of Oxford University; and Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, of the Stanford University Medical School. The idea was hatched at a mini-summit this month at the American Institute for Economic Research, whose writers have been railing against “draconian” lockdowns they say are causing more harm than good, and are not data-driven.

Connecticut experiences highest COVID-19 uptick since June; 36 states on travel list

BY PAUL HUGHES REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

Full story at https://www.rep-am.com/local/localnews/2020/10/13/state-experiences-highest-covid-19-uptick-since-june/

The percentage of positive tests for COVID-19 jumped to 2.4% based on the test results reported Tuesday, the highest single-day uptick since June. The positive test rate largely stayed between 0.5% and 1% on a daily basis for much of the summer, and then started ticking up in September, ranging north of 1%, but not quite reaching 2%. A concerned Gov. Ned Lamont summed up the 2.4% rate during a news briefing Tuesday. “It is not unexpected, but it is incredibly unnerving, and a little exhausting,” Lamont said.

Council President DePietro to give up salary


By Aliya Schneider Columbia-Greene Media

Full story at https://www.hudsonvalley360.com/news/columbiacounty/council-president-depietro-to-give-up-salary/article_f15bbaf2-7511-5de9-bebd-1bb1fe9c7747.html


Hudson Common Council President Thomas DePietro is forgoing his Common Council salary for 2021 and instead of the $12,500 salary proposed in the budget, he said Wednesday. DePietro earns $12,500 this year. “I want the people to know that I understand the dire financial situation the city is in,” DePietro said.
“While my salary is a tiny fraction of the city budget, I hope it inspires us all to realize some sacrifices will have to be made until the economy recovers.”
DePietro works as a freelance writer and editor, but has been focusing on government work this year, he said

Marist extends COVID restrictions with 29 cases found

Full story at https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/education/2020/10/14/marist-extends-covid-restrictions-27-cases-found/3648398001/

Marist College is dealing with at least 29 confirmed cases of COVID-19, according to Dr. Anil Vaidian, commissioner of the Dutchess County Department of Behavioral and Community Health. Where those individuals who tested positive are and if any staff or employees were infected is still unclear. The college is declining to share that information. And while he said evidence suggests the cluster is limited to the Marist Community, Vaidian said it will take two to three weeks to see whether active cases start appearing in the surrounding area. Vaidian said the cases stem from an off-campus “party” held Oct. 3, which resulted in campus restrictions that will continue through Friday, at least.

Food trucks take over Dutchess Stadium for 4-day festival

Geoffrey Wilson Poughkeepsie Journal

Though the COVID-19 pandemic forced most fairs and festivals in the mid-Hudson Valley to be canceled, residents will be able to taste the fair food they may have missed at Dutchess Stadium this weekend. The Hudson Valley Drive-Thru Fair Food Festival is set to take over the Fishkill stadium for four days of foodie fun, beginning Thursday, without any of the foot traffic. Guests will be provided a menu and drive on a route past the various food trucks in attendance. They will be able to place their orders from their vehicles and even reenter for seconds. The festival attempts to address COVID-19 concerns by limiting guests to their vehicles and barring foot traffic. Attendees will order and eat from their car. The event is free to attend, but not to park. Guests can purchase a $10 ticket to secure a parking space at the stadium, which also includes $5 in food vouchers for the event.

Housatonic High School’s annual spring play production canceled

Housatonic Valley Regional High School Principal Ian Strever announced the annual spring production put on by the Housatonic Musical Theatre Society has been canceled for 2021. “It’s an unfortunate decision we had to arrive at,” due to the pandemic, Strever said.

Marist extends COVID restrictions with 27 cases found

Journal staff

Full story at https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/education/2020/10/14/marist-extends-covid-restrictions-27-cases-found/3648398001/

Marist College will remain on “pause” through at least Friday after testing discovered 27 positive cases of COVID-19. Most of that total, shared by school officials Wednesday evening in a letter to the college community, has been traced to an off-campus event that spurred campus restrictions beginning late last week. That number is also more than twice the previous total of 12 cases traced to that event shared by the Dutchess County Department of Behavioral and Community Health last week.

Man crashes Jeep at Amenia farm, dies

Poughkeepsie Journal

Full story at https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/local/2020/10/13/amenia-farm-jeep-crash-res/3639302001/

A 50-year-old man died Monday after he was involved in a single-vehicle crash in Amenia, the Dutchess County Sheriff’s Office said. Matthew Hadley was driving a 2018 Jeep in a field in the area of Benson Farm at 355 Poplar Hill Road when police said he lost control and was partially ejected. Hadley was the only person in the Jeep at the time. Police responded to the scene near 5:50 p.m. He was pronounced dead at the scene. At this time the primary contributing factors appear to be reckless operation in off-road conditions and lack of seatbelt use according to police.The Dutchess County Medical Examiner, the Dutchess County Department of Emergency Response, state police, Amenia EMS, Northern Dutchess EMS and Amenia, Dover and Wassaic fire departments assisted at the scene. The crash remains under investigation by the sheriff’s office detective bureau and crash investigation unit.

Woman airlifted after Germantown ATV accident

By Bill Williams

Full story at https://www.hudsonvalley360.com/news/columbiacounty/woman-airlifted-after-germantown-atv-accident/article_659193b9-98c8-55b6-b99e-8c0f711fb2d8.html

GERMANTOWN — A woman was airlifted to Albany Medical Center early Sunday morning, following an all-terrain vehicle accident in Germantown, according to fire officials. The unidentified woman, 23, was found unconscious but alive after the crash, Germantown Second Assistant Chief Philip Salvatore said Sunday. Arriving firefighters reported there were three victims and requested a LifeNet helicopter for the 23-yearold woman.

Rep. Hayes target of racial slurs during Zoom meeting

BY BRUNO MATARAZZO JR. REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

Full story at https://www.rep-am.com/elections/2020/10/12/rep-hayes-target-of-racial-slurs-during-zoom-meeting/

NEWTOWN — U.S. Rep. Jahana Hayes became the subject of racial epithet 10 minutes into a virtual discussion with Democratic voters in Newtown on Monday. Hayes’ campaign posted screen shots of her Zoom call with Newtown voters that showed a man identified as Kenneth Rubio posting “Shut up (n-word) go pick your cotton” in all capital letters at least 10 times.
That post was followed by posts from two others who wrote about their support for Donald Trump in the Nov. 3 election. Zoom-bombing, which is the hostile takeover of a virtual meeting, has become more common since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic as more meetings go online.
The FBI has received reports of conferences being disrupted with pornography, threats and hate symbols.

Marist extends ‘pause,’ sees increase of positive COVID-19 cases after off-campus party

Ryan Santistevan Poughkeepsie Journal

Full story at https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/local/2020/10/12/coronavirus-marist-college-pause-extended/5965277002/

Marist College is extending its “pause” of campus activities until Wednesday, according to the college’s website.
The announcement comes a few days after students were notified that an off-campus gathering resulted in multiple causes of COVID-19. All classes will continue to hosted remotely on Monday and Tuesday.
And all students will be required to take a a COVID-19 test, even if they were recently tested, Sunday’s announcement said. A temporary quarantine is implemented for Fulton Townhouses 1 to 15.

NY COVID infections dip to lowest rate since September

By Kate Lisa Johnson Newspaper Corp.

Full story at https://www.hudsonvalley360.com/news/publicservicenews/ny-covid-infections-dip-to-lowest-rate-since-september/article_8404a22d-76b8-5023-b0e7-d1b8b8b91338.html

ALBANY — New York’s COVID-19 infections dipped to their lowest positivity rate in more than two weeks
Sunday, including new cases in active coronavirus clusters and across the state as a whole, as Gov. Andrew
Cuomo unveiled a new memorial Monday in honor of a beloved New York Italian-American to
commemorate Columbus Day.
New York continues to battle multiple coronavirus clusters mainly centralized in Hasidic Jewish
communities in Orange and Rockland counties, Brooklyn and some areas in Queens with tens of thousands
of targeted, rapid diagnostic COVID-19 testing to identify and stop the spread of the disease

Here is the latest communication from Lisa Carter, Superintendent of Region One regarding a COVID-19 case reported in the North Canaan Elementary School area.

Connecticut Coronavirus Updates: Hospitalization increase since Friday, positivity rate at 1.4%

As of Monday, Gov. Ned Lamont said hospitalizations were at 155. Cases totaled 61,377. Deaths were at 4,532 since the start of the pandemic in Connecticut. On Monday, there were 61,377 coronavirus cases reported, up 290 since Friday. Out of 77,261 tests administered, 1,066 came back positive. That leaves a positivity rate of 1.4 percent.

Woman airlifted after Germantown ATV accident


By Bill Williams

Full story at https://www.hudsonvalley360.com/news/columbiacounty/woman-airlifted-after-germantown-atv-accident/article_659193b9-98c8-55b6-b99e-8c0f711fb2d8.html


GERMANTOWN — A woman was airlifted to Albany Medical Center early Sunday morning, following an all-terrain vehicle accident in Germantown, according to fire officials. The unidentified woman, 23, was found unconscious but alive after the crash, Germantown Second
Assistant Chief Philip Salvatore said Sunday. At about 11:40 p.m., Columbia County 911 sent Germantown Fire Department and Northern Dutchess
Paramedics to 360 Old Saw Mill Road after receiving reports that a four-wheel ATV struck a tree.

Early voting in Massachusetts begins this weekend

Full story at https://www.berkshireeagle.com/news/local/early-voting-in-massachusetts-begins-this-weekend/article_fb20e984-0c9f-11eb-af2f-4342a2dc98fa.html

Early voting in cities and towns throughout Massachusetts begins Saturday and will continue through Oct. 30. Voting sites will operate as ballot drop-off locations for those who have received vote-by-mail ballots. More than 1.3 million ballots have been mailed to voters throughout the state as of Monday morning, according to a news release Secretary of the Commonwealth William F. Galvin.

AN IMPORTANT NOTE TO REGION ONE PARENTS, AND STAFF FROM SUPERINTENDENT LISA CARTER REGARDING A COVID-19 POSITIVE TEST OF NORTH CANAAN ELEMENTARY STUDENT:

Dear Region One Families and Staff:On October 10, we were notified that a member of our North Canaan Elementary School community tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19). The affected person has been instructed by me and by the staff at the Torrington Area Health Department to remain home in self-isolation for 10 days. Family members have also been instructed to self-quarantine for 14 days and to be tested. This morning, I communicated with the staff at the Torrington Area Health District. Anyone who is considered a “close contact” with the person who has tested positive has been contacted by TAHD health officials and has been provided with instructions on the appropriate steps to take regarding quarantining and testing. Based on my conversation with the staff at TAHD, all community members who need to be quarantined have been notified and there is no need to quarantine any of our classrooms or to close our schools. COVID-19 is spread mainly via person-to-person contact through contaminated air droplets from coughing and sneezing by an infected person. As with controlling the spread of other viruses, we urge everyone to discuss the following preventive measures with your children and family members:● Wash your hands frequently, but especially after using the restroom and before preparing or consuming food. Using soap and hot water, wash for about 20 seconds. Be sure to also wash your fingertips. When soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer.● Avoid coughing or sneezing into your hands or in the air. Always try to cough or sneeze into a tissue, then throw the tissue away. If you don’t have a tissue, cough/sneeze inside the elbow of your arm.● As much as you can, avoid touching your eyes, mouth, and nose.● Wear a face covering (mask) whenever there is a likelihood that you or your family members will be in the presence of others.● Maintain social distancing (at least 6 feet) between yourself and others when outside of yourhome.Below is the list of COVID-19 symptoms for which everyone should monitor in their family members:❑ Fever (100.4° Fahrenheit or higher)❑ Chills or shaking chills❑ Uncontrolled new cough (not due to other known cause, such as chronic cough)❑ Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath DocuSign Envelope ID: 539DF11B-5D72-41C8-A38C-5810BA61B247❑ New loss of taste or smell For additional information on COVID-19 symptoms, please see:https://www.cdc.gov/…/symptoms-testing/symptoms.htmlStaff and students exhibiting any of the above symptoms, or feeling ill, should remain home and call their medical provider to report their symptoms and ask about testing prior to seeking in-personcare at a clinic, physician’s office, or hospital.We thank you all for continuing to be vigilant about daily screening, for following the safety guidelines and for communicating any concerns as they arise. If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Sincerely, Lisa B. Carter Interim Superintendent,

Ballot bonanza: Berkshire clerks gird for record turnout this election season

By Clarence Fanto, Eagle correspondent 14 hrs ago

Full story at https://www.berkshireeagle.com/news/local/ballot-bonanza-berkshire-clerks-gird-for-record-turnout-this-election-season/article_0052738e-0a5f-11eb-b287-13e5d6082573.html

It’s crunch time for city and town clerks across the Berkshires and the state as a three-week election season swings into high gear and voter interest spikes to record highs. The combination of no-excuse-needed mail-in balloting — it’s a first for a presidential election in Massachusetts — and a robust, two-week period of early voting this month has posed a major challenge to the clerks in each community. As of Thursday, 10,252 vote-by-mail and 423 absentee ballots had been requested and were being mailed out from her office after they arrived from Secretary of State William Galvin’s headquarters in Boston. Pittsfield has 28,974 registered voters, she told The Eagle. Voter registration is open statewide through Oct. 24. Benjamin predicts a record turnout — 75 percent of Pittsfield’s registered voters — eclipsing the previous record of 64 percent.Both city clerks and their counterparts in the county’s 30 towns recommend mailing in the completed ballots as soon as possible, or depositing them in secure drop boxes provided at city and town halls. At all polling places, late-arriving mailed-in ballots can be tallied until Nov. 6, the deadline for the final, official count, as long as they are postmarked on or before Nov. 3. Any voter can track a mailed-in ballot on the state’s secure online page.

Early voting
For two weeks beginning Oct. 17 and ending Friday, Oct. 30, voters can show up at their polling places, masked and socially distanced, and cast their ballots without lines likely to be encountered on Election Day. Hours vary by city and town, but all communities have to offer voting at designated times on both weekends, Oct. 17-18 and Oct. 24-25. All early votes will be tallied on Election Day.

Rep. Hayes tests negative for virus, 3 weeks after diagnosis

Full story at https://www.rep-am.com/local/localnews/2020/10/10/rep-hayes-tests-negative-for-virus-3-weeks-after-diagnosis/

WATERBURY — U.S. Rep. Jahana Hayes said a test Saturday showed no signs of the coronavirus in her body, nearly three weeks after she was diagnosed with COVID-19.The Democrat, who represents Connecticut’s 5th District, has been documenting her battle against the disease on social media since revealing her positive test results on Sept. 20. Hayes said a follow-up COVID-19 test on Saturday came back negative. She said she also received a flu shot and made an appointment with the American Red Cross to donate plasma.

Salisbury residents debate proposed affordable housing project

BY RUTH EPSTEIN

Full story at https://www.rep-am.com/local/localnews/2020/10/10/salisbury-residents-debate-proposed-affordable-housing-project/

Traffic and parking were the dominant topics at a 3-plus-hour Planning and Zoning Commission hearing Thursday on an application for Holley Place, a proposed affordable housing development in downtown Lakeville.
The lengthy second session on the issue still wasn’t enough. A third session is planned for Nov. 9 at 5:30 p.m. via Zoom.
Salisbury Housing Committee, a volunteer private, nonprofit group, submitted the application. Member Jocelyn Ayer outlined the details, noting 13 units are planned in the three-story building, along with 24 parking spaces. Twelve of the spaces will be under the building and designated only for residents. The other 12 will be outdoors and open to the public.
The project will be served by town sewer and water, and the plan meets the requirements for lighting, landscaping and design. All units will be classified as affordable. Those who have an income under 80% of the area median income for Litchfield County will be eligible for tenancy.