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COVID-19 Update: May 12

Yesterday, the Governor announced that regional control rooms will monitor metrics during the reopening process. These regional control rooms will monitor the hospitalization rate, death rate, number of new hospitalizations, hospital bed capacity, ICU bed capacity, testing and contact tracing within its region during reopening and alert the state if the region's metrics no longer meet the reopening guidelines and adjust the reopening plan for that region accordingly.

The members of the Capital Region Control group are:

  • Regional Captain: Major General Patrick A. Murphy

  • Ruth Mahoney, REDC co-chair

  • Mike Blue, President, Capital District Area Labor Federation

  • Albany County Executive Dan McCoy

  • Rensselaer County Executive Steven McLaughlin

  • Schenectady County Manager Rory Fluman

  • Saratoga County Administrator Spencer Hellwig

  • Washington County Board of Administrators Vice Chair Robert Henke

  • Warren County Administrator Ryan Moore

  • Greene County Administrator Shaun Groden

  • Columbia County Board of Supervisors Chair Matt Murell

  • City of Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan

Members of the other regional control roomsare available here.

Today, the Capital Region officially has 6 out of the 7 metrics needed to begin the phased in re-opening plan.

The Finger Lakes, Southern Tier and Mohawk Valley have met all seven metrics required to begin phase one of the reopening plan, which includes reopening construction, manufacturing, retail for curbside pickup, agriculture, forestry and fishing.

While the Capital Region is not there yet on the reopening matrix, I do believe that we are very close, and the focus should be on reopening soon. 

To follow our region's progress check out theRegional Monitoring Dashboard here.

Governor Cuomoannouncedthat low-risk business and recreational activities, including landscaping, gardening, tennis and drive-in-movie theaters, will reopen statewide on May 15th.

The NYS Legislature will be hosting a Joint Small Business Online Hearing, tomorrow, May 13 at 10 a.m.  Legislators will solicit feedback from the small business community about their experiences with federal programs created by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act, including whether the assistance was adequate and accessible.

We're committed to listening and learning so we can best help small businesses weather this pandemic.

Learn more about Wednesday's hearing

Join me and Pat Fahy for a town hall thisThursday, May 14that 11 a.m.on health disparities among communities of color during theCOVID-19 pandemic

We will hear from expert panelists; UAlbany Emergency Preparedness Assistant Professor Dr. DeeDee Bennett, Capital District Latinos Board Chairman Daniel Irizarry, and founder of the Black Nurses Coalition Dr. Brenda Robinson, DNP, MSN, RN,  about the underlying social and historical issues placing underrepresented minorities at increased risk and their recommendation for addressing these disparities.

Learn more on our Facebook event page here watch us on Zoom: ID: 826 4216 3402

It is not too late to respond to the 2020 Census while being safe and practicing social distancing at home. Once you have responded, please encourage your family, friends and loved ones to complete the Census, too.

Our community benefits the most when the Census counts everyone. The Census determines allocation of resources, representation, and data collection to better understand the needs & wants of our diverse communities.

Now more than ever we need to make sure our community receives the resources we need. Learn more or complete your questionnaire

Remember to support local restaurants and order delivery or take-out from your favorite local spot!

For a comprehensive list of businesses located in the 108th Assembly District who are currently still offering take out or delivery options see below:

City of Albany:

Also, continue to check out theRensselaer County Chamber Facebook Pageand theRensselaer County Tourism Facebook Pagefor daily updates!

  • Unemployment Insurance - The one-week waiting period for Unemployment Insurance claims for workers directly affected by COVID-19 has been eliminated. The Department has also announced that they are changing the unemployment insurance job search requirement that is currently in place. No work search activities will be required during the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information check out the DOL page here:

  • Those in need can call 2-1-1 from any phone for a free, confidential referral to resources providing food, shelter, rent assistance, childcare options and other essential services. The helpline is also able to answer questions and provide referrals for COVID-19 related concerns. Simply dial 2-1-1 or visit

  • If you believe your business is an essential service but has not been included on ESD’s list, you can apply for ‘essential service status’ at this link:

  • OAG will halt the collection of medical and student debt owed to the State of New York and referred to the OAG for collection from March 17, 2020 through April 16, 2020. After this 30-day period, the OAG will reassess the needs of state residents for a possible extension.  

  • Charter will be providing free Spectrum broadband and Wi-Fi access for 60 days to households with K-12 and/or college students who do not already have a Spectrum broadband subscription (where service is available), at any service level up to 100 Mbps, as well as opening up Charter WiFi Hotspots across our footprint for public use. For more information or to enroll in the program please contact 1-844-488-8395

  • The Capital District YMCA will provide childcare for emergency personnel who do not have the option to work from home, as defined by The New York State Education Department. For more information visit:


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