Sunrise Smart Start: Friday, December 3

Sunrise Smart Start

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Stay up to date on the latest headlines in today’s Sunrise Smart Start on Friday, December 3, 2021.


According to a message posted by the district Thursday, all buildings in the district will be closed December 3 “out of an abundance of caution.” After school activities are also canceled.

The Batavia Police Department is investigating the threats, which the district says have not yet been found to be credible.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Batavia Police Department at (585) 345-6350 or the confidential tip line at (585) 345-6370.

Multiple cases of the omicron coronavirus variant have been detected in New York, including a man who attended an anime convention in Manhattan.

In addition to the conventioneer, health officials said tests showed five other people recently infected with COVID-19 had the variant.

“No cause for alarm. We just want to make sure that the public is aware of information when we receive it,” said Gov. Kathy Hochul.

As cases and hospitalizations continue to surge in New York, particularly in Upstate regions, the governor said she does not plan on, or agree with, shutting down schools or businesses, or instituting restrictions seen earlier in the pandemic.

“I’m not prepared to do that response — that would be an overreach,” Gov. Hochul said.

Joining the governor for Thursday’s briefing was Dr. Mary Bassett, New York State’s new health commissioner.

“To confront a pandemic is never easy,” Dr. Bassett said. “In three decades of public health work, I’ve learned the importance of truth telling. I’ll tell the public what we know: The pandemic is evolving.”

Last week the governor announced an executive order designed to help boost hospital capacity ahead of a potential winter spike of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations.

Former Mayor Lovely Warren’s resignation took effect at midnight, and her deputy mayor, James Smith, will oversee operations at City Hall until Mayor-elect, and current City Councilman, Malik Evans is sworn in on January 1, 2022.

When Smith was sworn in Thursday, he officially became Rochester’s 70th mayor in history, and its first openly gay mayor.

“My pledge today to the people of Rochester is to fulfill the awesome responsibilities of this role with integrity, purpose and grace,” said Mayor Smith in a press release.

Smith told News 8 says his true task and duty now is to make sure the citizens here are served and the quality of life here stays intact when it comes to basic services. 

“I signed up for this, and when I signed up for this, I signed up for all of it. I believe I have a duty and I intend to carry that out,” he said.

After a racist video shared on the social media giant TikTok — allegedly from a SUNY Brockport student — made its rounds on social media, students staged a protest Thursday.

They feel the police are not acting on it. But they say the problem goes deeper than those two incidents.

The TikTok video is about 10 seconds, and it’s racially insensitive. Thomas says the video by the student is absolutely in poor taste and he’s hoping she makes a public apology.

“Students are upset. They’re upset not only in regards to the recent TikTok video that was posted on social media, but also previous incidents of racism and bias that has taken place over the course of the semester and this is pretty much been the straw that broke the camels back” said Damita Davis.

The Penfield Central School District sent a message to parents Thursday afternoon, addressing a social media post which caused some concern.

The district said other students made administrators aware of the photos Thursday, and the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office was called in to investigate.

The incident remains under investigation.

The district said the student involved would face disciplinary measures. In the meantime, the district is reminding parents to talk to their children about appropriate uses of social media.

Serious winds will drop temperatures throughout Friday, with parts of the day sitting below 30. Some rain and additional winds from a western jet stream will cover Rochester in the early morning Saturday.

The Weekend: Sunday will see a good amount of sunlight with temperatures in hovering in the 40s. Snow will come Monday in the form of lake effect. It’s strength will depend on this incoming wind front.

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