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COVID-19 Update: May 20

Updated: May 31, 2020

Capital Region to open in Phase 1 TODAY

Governor Cuomoannounced yesterdaythat the Capital Region will be able to enter phase 1 of re-opening today.

By taking the proper precautions, we can protect vulnerable New Yorkers and ensure our state's gradual reopening can continue safely. Thank you to the Capital Region Control Room and to all the local elected officials, organizations and individuals that helped to get us to this point!

For a complete list of the categories of Phase 1 businesses,

Memorial Day Gathering Guidelines

The Governor alsoannouncedthe state will allow Memorial Day ceremonies of 10 people or less statewide, with final decisions about ceremonies being left to local governments. The Governor also encouraged vehicle parades in honor of veterans for Memorial Day.

Religious Gathering Guidelines

Today,Governor Cuomo announcedthat starting this Thursday May 21stthe State will allow for religious gathering of no more than 10 people. He also announced that houses of worship will be able to conduct services in parking lots and drive-in movie theaters.

Back to Business: Reopening the Capital Region in Phase 1

Tomorrow,Thursday, May 21, 2020, from 11:00 A.M. -- 12:00 P.M., please join me and Assemblymember Patricia Fahy, along with Retail Council of NYS President Ted Potrikus, Bethlehem Chamber of Commerce President Maureen McGuinness, Downtown Troy BID Executive Director Katie Hammon, andMarcus Golston, Owner of Marcus Blaque, for a discussion on best practices and protocols businesses should follow during Phase 1 of reopening.

Zoom Meeting ID: 864 7213 6644 -

Hospital Visitation Pilot Program

Governor Cuomo alsoannounced a collaborationwith the Greater New York Hospital Association and the Healthcare Association of New York State to implement a two-week hospital visitation pilot program in 16 hospitals across the state to allow increased visitations for family members and loved ones. As part of the pilot program, visits will be time limited and visitors will be provided with and must wear PPE and are subject to symptom and temperature checks.

Albany Medical Center has been included as one of the hospitals in this pilot program.

Local Restaurants

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!

Helpful Reminders

  • 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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