Martucci wins Senate race, Cuomo vetoes Monticello school bill and more

What's new in the Upper Delaware region December 3 to December 9

Posted 12/1/20

Martucci scores state Senate seat

42ND SENATE DISTRICT OF NEW YORK — Weeks since Election Day, Democratic Sen. Jen Metzger (NYS-42) conceded her race for reelection to Republican challenger …

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Martucci wins Senate race, Cuomo vetoes Monticello school bill and more

What's new in the Upper Delaware region December 3 to December 9

Posted

Martucci scores state Senate seat

42ND SENATE DISTRICT OF NEW YORK — Weeks since Election Day, Democratic Sen. Jen Metzger (NYS-42) conceded her race for reelection to Republican challenger Mike Martucci. Metzger first won the seat in 2018 changing the district from red to blue for the first time in decades. 

Martucci, founder of a school bus company, ran primarily on his opposition to New York’s criminal justice reforms, specifically regarding the cash bail system. Martucci dubbed his platform the “families first agenda.”

“I am honored and humbled by the support and trust given to me by the voters of the district,” Martucci said in a statement. “We built a multi-party coalition of families and community advocates, farmers and law enforcement, laborers and business owners, who recognized that Albany must change its practices and priorities to better meet the needs of New Yorkers during these most challenging times.”

Gunther ‘outraged’ by governor vetoing school aid bill

MONTICELLO, NY — In response to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s vetoing the Monticello School Aid Bill, Assemblywoman Aileen Gunther (NYS-100) released the following statement:

“I am outraged that the governor has once again vetoed legislation to ensure that the Monticello Central School District has the funds it needs to serve its students. This bill would have done nothing more than forgive the district for a simple clerical error. Now the state will continue to take unnecessary punitive action that will only serve to harm property taxpayers and students at a time when they can least afford it. 

“This bill was vetoed over the Thanksgiving weekend without any communication from the governor’s office. The governor has signed plenty of bills into law that require state funds, so it appears disingenuous that funding dries up suddenly when it comes to taking care of our kids,” she said.

Wolf plans to veto COVID liability protection bill 

HARRISBURG, PA — Last week, the PA General Assembly sent Gov. Tom Wolf a bill that would make it harder to sue Pennsylvania schools, businesses and health care providers over COVID-19-related issues. The bill passed the House 104-98, lacking support from all Democrats and five Republicans.

Since its passage, outlets have reported that Wolf plans to veto the bill, agreeing with Democrats who call the bill’s language too broad.

Other interested parties, most outspokenly the nonprofit advocacy group Pennsylvania Coalition for Civil Justice Reform (PCCJR), have asked the governor to reconsider.

“A veto of [this bill] would make us wonder, whose side is Gov. Wolf on?” executive director Curt Schroder said. “The governor has the opportunity to protect restaurants and other businesses from additional devastation at the hands of lawyers. Gov. Wolf should use this opportunity to show businesses and health care that he understands the pressures they are subjected to during this pandemic by signing the bill.”

Environmental groups oppose gas terminal

DELAWARE RIVER — Local and regional environmental advocacy groups are urging residents to join them this week in opposing the construction of a liquefied natural gas export terminal on the Delaware River.

If constructed, the terminal would allow fracked gas from Pennsylvania to be transported to a facility on the Susquehanna River, and finally hauled as liquefied methane to Gibbstown, NJ.

The Delaware River Basin Commission, made up of four governors and a federal representative, are meeting next on Wednesday, December 9. Before that happens, environmental activists are organizing a “week of action” to oppose the terminal. On November 30, advocacy group Catskill Mountainkeeper implored residents in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Delaware to call their governors and ask them to vote “no” on the terminal. The Mountainkeeper predicts that New Jersey’s Gov. Phil Murphy will be the key vote.

Pike County limits on-site traffic

PIKE COUNTY, PA — In a continuing effort to protect the community during the current spike in COVID-19 cases, the Pike County government is encouraging the public to conduct transactions and business with county offices either online or by telephone as much as possible to limit on-site traffic within county facilities including the administration building in Milford; the Area Agency on Aging, in Hawley; the conservation district in Blooming Grove; the Community Planning and Workforce Development Offices in Shohola; and the training center in Lords Valley.

For essential business that must be conducted on-site, it is advisable to call the specific department or office in advance. Masks covering the mouth and nose must be worn within county offices and common areas, and social distance should be maintained.

A list of county services is available online at www.pikepa.org/online. Visit www.pikepa.org/offices for contact information.

Sullivan County screens for COVID-19

MONTICELLO, NY— Effective November 30, all visitors to the Sullivan County Government Center in Monticello will be screened for COVID-19 exposure prior to conducting business in the building. Except for public meetings, all visits must be by appointment.

“This is a precautionary step,” said county manager Josh Potosek.

Anyone coming to the government center must be there for an office appointment, buy Move Sullivan bus tickets, or attend a meeting. No loitering will be allowed, and all visitors must wear masks and appropriately social distance, unless medical conditions require otherwise. The county urged residents to stay home if they have a fever or don’t feel well.

“Our other county facilities already operate in this manner or are closed to the public,” noted Potosek. “By taking this action, I hope to avoid repeating the kind of shutdown we experienced at the outbreak of this pandemic.”

Sullivan County public health issues multiple advisories

SULLIVAN COUNTY, NY — Over the past week, Sullivan County Public Health Services issued several advisories regarding confirmed cases of COVID-19 and possible exposures.

Two Walmart employees in the Town of Thompson tested positive for COVID-19 and may have exposed a significant number of others while working. Exposure is possible for anyone who was at the Walmart on November 16 from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.; November 17 from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.; November 18 from 4 a.m. to 4 p.m.; November 19 from 4 a.m.to 4 p.m.; or November 20 from 4 a.m. to 4 p.m.

A Rock Hill Dollar General employee tested positive for COVID-19 and may have exposed others while working. Exposure is possible for anyone who was at the Dollar General any day between November 15 and November 18.

And at least four COVID-19 cases at Peppino’s Restaurant in Callicoon were confirmed. Exposure is possible for anyone who was at Peppino’s between November 14 and November 17.

“If someone thinks they have been exposed and develops symptoms, they should self-quarantine for 14 days and call their health care provider, or call Sullivan County Public Health Services at 845/292-5910.,” director Nancy McGraw said.

Contact investigations are ongoing; anyone who tests positive will go into mandatory isolation, and as close contacts are identified, they are encouraged to seek a test and ordered into mandatory quarantine. 

For an updated list of testing locations, visit www.sullivanny.us. For more information on coronavirus, visit www.coronavirus.health.ny.gov/home

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