NEWS 8 WROC VIDEO — As coronavirus continues to dominate headlines locally and beyond, it’s important to isolate what is fact, and what is fiction.
That’s why News 8 WROC is expanding beyond the traditional newscast to deliver the news that matters the most to the people that matter to us: you, the viewer. Each week day we’ll be doing an extended, online-only digital newscast that compresses the daily coronavirus headlines into one place.
Coronavirus: Facts First
Evening of March 17, 2020
Monroe County officials have reported the first local COVID-19 death.
At this time there are 14 confirmed cases locally. Of the 14, three are considered new as of Tuesday and five of the people have been hospitalized.
Officials say there are 79 people under mandatory quarantine locally at this time.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Tuesday 432 new cases of COVID-19 in New York, bringing the statewide total to 1,374.
New York remains No. 1 in the nation in confirmed cases; Washington state is No. 2 with 904, according to the governor’s office.
“This is an extraordinary time in this nation’s history,” Cuomo said. “It will go down in the history books as one of those moments of true crisis and confusion and chaos.”
Cuomo also said there are now 12 coronavirus-related deaths in New York state and among the 1,374 confirmed cases, 264 have required hospitalization — 19% of cases.
To date, 10,049 people have been tested in New York.
“The numbers are staggering,” Cuomo said.
During Tuesday’s press conference, the governor discussed the state’s approach to reducing the spread of the virus: Testing, containment, mitigation, and a focus on the health care system.
President Donald Trump wants the government to send checks to Americans in the next two weeks in an effort to curb the economic cost of the coronavirus pandemic, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Tuesday.
“The president has instructed me we have to do this now,” he said at the White House briefing. He didn’t give details except to say the amount should be significant and millionaires would not get it. The proposal requires approval from Congress.
“We want to make sure Americans get money in their pockets quickly,” Mnuchin said. The stock market rose during the briefing after a savage drop Monday.
The White House on Tuesday was asking Congress to approve a massive emergency rescue package to help businesses as well as taxpayers cope with the economic crisis that is paired with the pandemic.
Mnuchin planned to outline that roughly $850 billion package to Senate Republicans at a private lunch, with officials aiming to have Congress approve it this week. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, opening the Senate on Tuesday morning, promised swift action.
“The Senate will not adjourn until we have passed significant and bold new steps above and beyond what the House has passed to help our strong nation and our strong underlying economy weather this storm,” McConnell said.
Bigger than the 2008 bank bailout or the 2009 recovery act, the White House proposal aims to provide a massive tax cut for wage-earners, $50 billion for the airline industry and relief for small businesses.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Tuesday a three-way agreement with the New York State Legislature on a paid sick leave bill to provide “immediate assistance” for New Yorkers impacted by COVID-19.
Officials from the governor’s office say the bill “guarantees job protection and pay for New Yorkers quarantined” amid the coronavirus outbreak. Officials say the legislation also adopts “comprehensive” paid sick leave proposal which was first advanced in the governor’s executive budget.
To address the immediate need of employees affected by COVID-19 who are subject to mandatory or precautionary orders of quarantine or isolation, the Governor’s legislation will provide the following:
- Employers with 10 or fewer employees and a net income less than $1 million will provide job protection for the duration of the quarantine order and guarantee their workers access to Paid Family Leave and disability benefits (short-term disability) for the period of quarantine including wage replacement for their salaries up to $150,000.
- Employers with 11-99 employees and employers with 10 or fewer employees and a net income greater than $1 million will provide at least 5 days of paid sick leave, job protection for the duration of the quarantine order, and guarantee their workers access to Paid Family Leave and disability benefits (short-term disability) for the period of quarantine including wage replacement for their salaries up to $150,000.
- Employers with 100 or more employees, as well as all public employers (regardless of number of employees), will provide at least 14 days of paid sick leave and guarantee job protection for the duration of the quarantine order.
The provisions of the quarantine legislation are set to take effect immediately upon passage.
Also included in the legislation:
- Employers with 4 or fewer employees and a net income less than $1 million will provide at least 5 days of unpaid sick leave each year.
- Employers with 5-99 employees and employers with 4 or fewer employees and a net income greater than $1 million will provide at least 5 days of paid sick leave each year.
- Employers with 100 or more employees will provide at least 7 days of paid sick leave each year.
Monroe County Executive Adam Bello, along with officials from the United Way of Greater Rochester and the Rochester Area Community foundation have announced a new initiative to help non-profits during the COVID-19 outbreak.
This new, streamlined approach will help non-profits, volunteers, and concerned citizens alike in helping the organizations that are actively healing our community.
How to help
- United Way introducing an online volunteer portal for concerned citizens to help
- Activation of “Community Crisis Fund” to allow rapid deployment of resources to help non-profits impacted by the virus outbreak
- Human service support hub, local hotline for info & updates to non-profits and community based organizations. Those interested in joining can do so by requesting via email at: CovidResponse@uwrochester.org.