Sunrise Smart Start: October 5, 2021

Sunrise Smart Start

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Stay up to date on the latest headlines in today’s Sunrise Smart Start on Tuesday, October 5, 2021.

Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren to resign after accepting plea deal

Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren will resign after accepting the terms of a plea deal Monday in court. Her resignation will be effective December 1.

The mayor’s trial was scheduled to begin Monday for charges over alleged campaign finance violations that date back to her 2017 re-election campaign.

Warren and two assistants —Albert Jones Jr. and Rosiland Brooks-Harris— were accused of using a PAC to get around donation limits during her 2017 campaign. They each faced two charges; scheme to defraud in the first degree, and violation of election law — both of which are class E felonies.

One of the attorneys in the courtroom told News 8 Monday morning that negotiations on the table would reduce the mayor’s felony charges to misdemeanor charges, which means the mayor’s law license would not be impacted. The deal, however, would require Warren to resign.

Several hours later, the mayor ultimately accepted those terms. Jones Jr. and Brooks Harris also pleaded guilty Monday.

Terms of the plea will also resolve another set of criminal charges the mayor is currently facing. Warren and her estranged husband, Timothy Granison, were each handed three different charges after a pistol and rifle were found in their home where their daughter was left alone in May.

Presumptive Rochester Mayor Malik Evans says focus on future, not past after Warren plea deal

Presumptive Rochester Mayor Malik Evans says he’s focusing on the future after Mayor Lovely Warren accepted a plea deal in court.

“I’m just learning about the information that’s coming out of the mayor’s trial,” Evans said. “We have to stay focused on making sure the city of Rochester continues to move forward.”

Terms of the plea deal included the mayor’s effective resignation date of December 1, 2021 — a month until she would be leaving office as Evans will be sworn into office come January.

“What I’m preparing for is a transition, but more importantly fulfilling my current role as a City Councilmember,” Evans said. “It’s all news to me today. I’m still processing the news. I have to continue to read to see what is outlined in the plea. I don’t know all of the legality as it relates to what was offered. I’m still processing it as are citizens in the community. My focus is on how we can move Rochester forward, which I’m looking forward to doing come January first.”

Missing person alert issued for teen last seen in Clarkson

The Monroe County Sheriff’s Office issued a missing person alert Monday for a 14-year-old girl last seen in Clarkson.

Investigators say Emma Franklin was reported missing around 5:00 p.m. Monday. She is 5′ 6” and around 135 lbs. with red hair and blue eyes.

Franklin was last seen at her home in Clarkson. She was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt with Chinese symbols on it and black or grey sweatpants.

Police say they do not believe Franklin is in danger. Anyone with information is asked to call 911.

New data shows percentage of Monroe County COVID deaths in unvaccinated patients

Officials from the Monroe County Department of Public Health reported 148 new COVID-19 cases Monday, and 4 new deaths.

Health officials say 175 COVID deaths were reported in Monroe County between March 1 and September 30 of 2021. Among patients under the age of 65, the county says 97 percent were not fully vaccinated. Among patients ages 65 and older, 71 percent were not fully vaccinated.

County officials say they will update that information on the first Monday of every month.

County officials report COVID-19 deaths weekly on Mondays. To date, 1,410 Monroe County residents have died from COVID-19.

The county is now averaging 202 new cases per day over the past week. Monroe County now has a seven-day rolling average positivity rate of 3.8%.

According to the New York State Department of Health, 209 people in the Finger Lakes region were hospitalized with the virus, and 54 are in the ICU.

As of the Monroe County COVID-19 dashboard’s last local vaccination update, 430,301 county residents are fully vaccinated and 479,377 have received at least one dose of the vaccine — 74.6% of the county population.

Gov. Kathy Hochul announces $25 million to help restaurant industry

Gov. Kathy Hochul signed legislation Monday to help New York’s homeless, disabled veterans, and elderly SNAP recipients to purchase prepared meals.

The new law creates a statewide restaurant meals program where some SNAP recipients can use their benefits at participating restaurants.

The governor also announced the launch of a $25 million Restaurant Resiliency Program to provide relief to the industry in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Officials from the governor’s office say the program builds on the Nourish New York initiative, and will provide funding to food banks and emergency food providers to provides prepared meals from restaurants and deliver them to families in need.

Businesses can apply online for funding from the new resiliency program.

“It’s unconscionable that in a state as prosperous as New York, many residents still struggle to get enough food to feed their families,” Gov. Hochul said. “The vital actions we’re taking—establishing two restaurant programs to help the most vulnerable New Yorkers feed themselves and help restaurants recover from this terrible pandemic—will work in tandem to put food on the table in homes across the state. This pandemic continues to impact the wallets and homes of a vast number of New Yorkers, and we’re taking any and all actions to help them support themselves and their loved ones.”

Officials from the governor’s office say prior to the signing of this legislation, SNAP recipients in New York State could not use their benefits to purchase prepared goods, preventing many that do not have access to cooking or food preparation on their own from using SNAP benefits. This primarily affects the homeless, disabled and elderly populations, officials say.

Emergency food providers will work directly with restaurants who are deemed eligible for the program by the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets.

Irondequoit celebrates opening of new community center at Skyview on the Ridge

There’s a new community center at the former Irondequoit Mall.

Irondequoit town officials joined community leaders Monday morning to formally open the town’s new Irondequoit Community Center.

Officials said the facility will provide a “long overdue resource” for the community and will “serve as an anchor” in the first phase of redevelopment at Skyview on the Ridge, formerly known as the Medley Centre.

The 41,339 square-foot Community Center will be operated by the town’s recreation department. Approved by Irondequoit voters in 2019, the new facility has a gym, fitness center, dance studio space, walk path, meeting rooms, lounges, and more.

Weather forecast: Patchy dense fog to start Tuesday

An area of upper level low pressure (which is influencing our weather tonight) will reform well to our southwest over the next 48 hours. This will allow high pressure to gradually build to our north, helping support a drying trend from here.

This setup is something we call a “Rex” block, and it a pattern that tends to result in stagnant weather. Whether that’s a good or bad thing depends on whether you’re near the high or the low.

Fortunately, we’ll be near the high. That will buy us a Tuesday that will still feature patchy drizzle and light rain at times, but will be notably less rainy overall. I suspect clouds will still be the predominant view looking up, but a few breaks could develop by late afternoon with highs in the lower and middle 60s.

That high keeps working its magic Wednesday, resulting in more breaks in the clouds and temperatures that should target the 70 degree mark. This will start a stretch of unseasonably warm October weather that appears to want to linger for awhile. We have highs into the lower and middle 70s late week and through the weekend with overnight lows into the upper 50s.

It’s the sort of pattern that will continue to keep our fall color slow and muted, raising additional concerns that this season’s display will pale in comparison to years’ past. I see no immediate evidence of a colder October pattern in the next week or two, so those who felt shorted by summer can pad the stats a bit from here.

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