5.22.2020 Schenectady County COVID-19 Community Update

Schenectady County COVID-19 Update

Stay Up-To-Date

For important information and the latest updates, follow @SchenectadyCounty on Facebook, @SchdyCountyNY on Twitter, and visit the Schenectady County Public Health Services website: www.schenectadycounty.com/publichealth.

New Information:

Positive Cases: 630 (lab-confirmed)

Current Lab-Confirmed Positives: 106

Hospitalizations: 12 *includes all hospitalizations, regardless of county of residence

People Under Investigation Currently Hospitalized: 6

Quarantines (potentially exposed): 343

Isolations: 162 (includes lab-confirmed positives, presumed positives and hospitalized positives; see CDC definition below)

Recoveries: 599 (isolation recoveries, which include lab-confirmed positives and presumed positives)

Sadly, 29 people who tested positive for COVID-19 have died.

Click here for CDC definitions of isolation and quarantine.

NY Forward information is available at www.schenctadycounty.com/NYForward

Community Testing

Mondays/Wednesdays/Fridays: 7-9am at the Rotterdam Walmart at 1320 Altamont Ave

Thursdays: 9am-5pm (staff break between 1-2pm) at Ellis’ McClellan Street Health Center at 600 McClellan Street, Schenectady.

Saturdays: 9am-2pm at Hometown Health Centers, 1044 State Street, Schenectady. Call (518) 688-3420 to schedule an appointment. (There will be no testing on Saturday, May 23 due to the holiday weekend.

Submit Comments for Public Hearing on proposed Local Law F of 2020

To minimize the spread of COVID-19, the Schenectady County Legislature has moved its meetings online. Members of the public who would like to submit a comment to be included as part of the record may fill out the official contact form.

Comments must be submitted by 12:01am on Monday, June 1, 2020 for the Monday, June 1 Public Hearing on proposed Local Law F of 2020.

Submitted comments that do not pertain to proposed Local Law F will be held until the next privilege of the floor, which takes place on Tuesday, June 9, 2020 at the regular meeting of the County Legislature and will be entered into the record at that time.

Information about proposed Local Law F of 2020 and a link to the comment submission form is available at: https://www.schenectadycounty.com/content/legislature-public-hearing-13

Governor Cuomo's Executive Order 202.8 closes DMVs across the State until June 6

County Briefings

As Schenectady County looks to move into Phase 1 of NY Forward, we will begin giving live video updates twice weekly starting on May 19, at 10am on Tuesdays and Thursdays, in order to update the public on the most recent guidance. These events are streamed on FB live at https://www.facebook.com/SchenectadyCounty/

Residents can submit questions by:

Schenectady County started Phase 1 of NY Forward on Wednesday May 20. More information is available here.

Maps and Other Demographic Information (including current positives and mortality demographic information) is available at www.schenectadycounty.com/COVID19Info

The Plotter Kill and Indian Kill Preserves will reopen on Friday, May 22, 2020, with social distancing measures in effect.

Metroplex Update 5.20.2020

Unemployment Insurance Update

In prior updates, we have encouraged business owners and their employees to take advantage

of enhanced Unemployment Insurance benefits. To avoid payment delays please be sure to

certify your claim each week. This step is required to receive weekly benefits. More

information can be obtained at the NYS Department of Labor website.

PPP Update

The SBA has released guidelines to help small businesses obtain loan forgiveness at the

conclusion of the eight-week covered period, which begins with the disbursement of their

loans. Click here to view the new information.

Capital Region Reopens

Today marks the start of the Capital Region reopening process. Read about which businesses

are included in Phase 1 and other phases: https://forward.ny.gov

In addition, Governor Cuomo has released a Business Reopening Lookup Tool that allows

businesses to input information about the location and nature of their operations to determine

whether their business is eligible to reopen. If the business is eligible to reopen the tool will

provide the relevant guidance materials for reopening safely and the public health and safety

standards with which the business must comply. You can view this tool here.

Chamber Information

The Capital Region Chamber of Commerce has created some useful information for business

owners that we are sharing here. This includes a Reopening Guide. You can also find a

reopening template that was created by New York State. While you don’t need to submit this

to the State, you should personalize it for your business, share with your employees and keep it

on premises. If your business is included in Phase I, be sure to review your industry guidelines

to safely reopen, and then sign the business affirmation.

If we can be of assistance, please email us. Contact information is available here.

See earlier COVID-19 updates at www.schenectadymetroplex.org.

NY Forward – Phase 1

Phase 1 includes construction, agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting, retail (limited to curbside or in-store pickup or drop off), manufacturing and wholesale trade.

Schenectady County is offering free cloth face coverings (masks) to Phase 1 businesses for their employees.

Masks can be requested by sending an email to manager@schenectadycounty.com or by calling (518) 388-4355.

Helpful Links

Regional Dashboard: https://forward.ny.gov/regional-monitoring-dashboard

NY Forward: https://forward.ny.gov/

Detailed Phase 1 Guidance: https://forward.ny.gov/industries-reopening-phase

Link to Governor Cuomo’s latest daily update: https://www.facebook.com/GovernorAndrewCuomo/videos/1926046390859835/

Schenectady County COVID-19 Emergency Response Coalition

Deliveries made

Week ending 5/15: 1,206

Total to date: 12,128

Calls taken

Week ending 5/15: 2,113

Total to date: 20,300

Residents served to date: 8,416; individual residents, some have received multiple deliveries

Community Testing at Rotterdam Walmart

Testing is available Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 7-9am. More information is available here.

Metroplex Update 5.14.2020

The State has published a dashboard to track the public health data regions must meet to reopen here.

The Governor’s office has released guidelines and business safety templates for industries allowed to begin reopening in phase one. As of Friday, May 15, select industries in regions of the state that have met seven public health metrics will be allowed to start reopening.

While the Capital Region, including Schenectady County, has not yet met the seven metrics needed to start phase one reopening, extensive efforts are underway to get to the required thresholds. We encourage businesses to continue to check the dashboard and media reports about when the Capital Region will be given the go-ahead to start phase one reopening. In the meantime, we encourage business owners to familiarize themselves with the guidelines.

Below is a list of industries allowed to open in phase one, along with guidelines and business safety templates.

Business owners must read the “Detailed Guidelines” for their industries and provide their digital signature affirming they have read and understand the document.

As this region has not yet allowed to start phase one, we would encourage you to review the guidelines but hold off on submitting the affirmations until the phase one reopening for the Capital Region is approved.

Links to guidelines for construction, agriculture/forestry/fishing & hunting, retail trade, manufacturing and wholesale trade are available here.

If we can be of assistance, please email us. See earlier COVID-19 updates at www.schenectadymetroplex.org.

Schenectady County State of Emergency Issued 5.11.2020

Deeds, Mortgage Discharges and DBAs

Email CountyClerk@schenectadycounty.com for a digital copy of deeds, mortgage discharges and DBAs. Please include a copy of your license in the email.

Submit Comments for Privilege of the Floor

To minimize the spread of COVID-19, the Schenectady County Legislature has moved its meetings online. Members of the public who would like to submit a comment to be included as part of the record may fill out the official contact form.

Comments must be submitted by 12:01am on Tuesday, May 12, 2020 for the Tuesday, May 12th regular meeting of the legislature.

Submit comments here.

Metroplex Update 5.4.2020

Congress has approved over $300 billion in additional funding for the SBA’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). The Program helps small business owners and not-for-profit organizations maintain payroll and employees by offering loans that turn into grants if program requirements are completed. The demand for PPP loans/grants has been very high and the program is on a “first come first serve basis” so time is of the essence if you have not yet applied. Applications must be submitted through your local bank or credit union. It is best to work with your existing financial institution to submit an application. See links below for additional information.

Updated PPP FAQ: https://home.treasury.gov/system/files/136/Paycheck-Protection-Program-Frequently-AskedQuestions.pdf

How to Calculate Maximum Loan Amounts: https://home.treasury.gov/system/files/136/How-to-Calculate-Loan-Amounts.pdf

PPP Resources: https://www.sba.gov/paycheckprotection https://home.treasury.gov/policy-issues/top-priorities/cares-act/assistance-for-small-businesses

To assist small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, the Community Loan Fund of the Capital Region has teamed up with generous supporters, Neil and Jane Golub, the Capital Region Chamber of Commerce, Citizens Bank, Berkshire Bank, KeyBank, and local community organizations to launch the COVID-19 Small Business Continuity Program. The program will provide grants in amounts up to $20,000 to local small businesses during this crisis. For more information and to apply, please visit this page.

The Unemployment insurance (UI) Program is another vehicle to assist you and your employees and is an alternative to filing for PPP funding. During the pandemic, an additional $600 is available in weekly supplements to regular UI benefits. For employees eligible for the maximum weekly UI benefit of $504, the additional $600 weekly payment translates into a combined weekly income of $1,104. The supplemental funding is available through July 31, 2020. For the first time, UI benefits are also available to the self-employed and individual contractors. See https://labor.ny.gov/ui/pdfs/ui-covid-faq.pdf for more information.

If we can be of assistance, please email us. View earlier COVID-19 updates at www.schenectadymetroplex.org.

Essential Employees and COVID-19

Are you an employer of essential employees and/or healthcare workers and want to learn more about how quarantine effects your staff? Are you an essential employee and/or a healthcare worker and want to learn more about when and how you can return to work?

*Employers, if you have further questions, please call our communicable disease department at 518-386-2824 Option 4.

NYS Department of Health Guidance:

Protocols for Essential Personnel to Return to Work Following COVID-19 Exposure or Infection

Updated Protocols for Personnel in Healthcare and Other Direct Care Settings to Return to Work Following COVID-19 Exposure or Infection

Veterans

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients who did not file 2018 or 2019 tax returns, and have qualifying children under age 17 should visit www.irs.gov/coronavirus/non-filers-enter-payment-info-here and visit the Non-Filers Enter Your Information section to provide their information. SSI recipients who have dependent children and did not file 2018 or 2019 taxes need to act by Tuesday, May 5, in order to receive additional payments for their eligible children quickly.

More information is available here.

Certificates of Residency

During the COVID-19 pandemic, requirements to obtain a Certificate of Residence have changed.  Please review the information below.

Schenectady County, Department of Finance, Certificate of Residency E-Mail Application Procedure

Please go to SchenectadyCounty.com/certificate and download the required application.

Certificate of Residence Information Sheet

The following items need to be emailed to: certificate@schenectadycounty.com 

A. Applicants/students asking for a new certificate will need to provide the  following separate   items:

  • Proof of where the applicant/student lived one year ago from the date on the application;
  • Proof of where the applicant/student lived six months ago from the date on the application (date specific);
  • Proof  of where the applicant/student lives within the last 30 days – (date specific);
  • Copy of applicant/student driver’s license;
  • Certificate completed and notarized.

B. If the applicant/student has already had a certificate with Schenectady County  the following separate items need to be provided:

  • Proof of where applicant/student lived within the last 30 days- (date specific);
  • Copy of  applicant/student driver’s license;
  • Certificate completed and notarized.

Please remember to include a phone number in the email, should the County have any questions. 

Once the County receives the required information, it will issue the certificate via email.    

Applicants/students are required to mail the notarized application with original signature to the following address: Schenectady County, Finance Department, 620 State St., Schenectady NY  12305. 

Questions regarding Certificate of Residence can be directed to the Department of Finance at: (518) 388-4260. 

Metroplex Update 4.22.2020

More Funding for PPP

Congress is close to approving an additional $310 billion for the SBA’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). Additional funding ($60 billion) is also expected to be approved for SBA’s disaster loan program.

The PPP Program helps small businesses and not for profit organizations maintain payroll and employees by offering loans that turn into grants if program requirements are completed.

The demand for PPP has been very high thus the need for Congress to approve additional funding. The program is on a “first come first serve basis” so time is of the essence if you have not applied.

Applications must be submitted through your local bank or credit union. It is best to work with your existing financial institution to submit an application for PPP funding.

Enhanced Unemployment Insurance (UI)

During the pandemic, an additional $600 is available in weekly supplements to regular UI benefits. For employees eligible for the maximum weekly NYS UI benefit of $504, the additional $600 weekly payment translates into a combined weekly income of $1,104. The supplemental funding is available through July 31, 2020.

For the first time, UI benefits are also available to the self-employed and individual contractors.

See https://www.labor.ny.gov/ui/pdfs/pua-factsheet.pdf for more information.

If we can be of assistance, please email us. See earlier COVID 19 updates at www.schenectadymetroplex.org

Senior & Long Term Care

Provides services for senior County residents, 60 years of age and older.

www.schenectadycounty.com/sltc

Phone: 518-382-8481 x1 

Monday through Friday 8:30 am to 4:30 pm.

107 Nott Terrace, Suite 305

Schenectady, NY

NYS face covering guidance for businesses/employers is available here.

Schenectady County State of Emergency Extended.

View here.

CDC Guidance for Food Service Industry

View guidance here.

Board of Elections:

Absentee ballot forms are available here.

Household Hazardous Waste collection event scheduled for May 8, 2020 is cancelled.

Metroplex

4.13.2020 Update:

PPP Program – A helpful FAQ on the PPP program is here. Small Businesses need to know that this is a “first come first serve” program so we encourage firms to work with their banks to submit a loan application as quickly as possible.

Essential Businesses – An update on the definition of essential businesses can be found here. Mid-Sized Companies - Details are out on programs for mid-sized businesses. See link here.

Employee Retention Tax Credit – As an alternative to the PPP, employers can also consider the Employee Retention Tax Credit Program. See details here.

Deferral Social Security Taxes – Another program that might be of interest is the Social Security Tax Deferral Program. See details here.

Business Losses – Congress as part of the Corona Virus response has also made significant changes in tax law related to business losses including removal of a cap on business losses and the ability to “look back” for five years on losses. Businesses should discuss these new tax changes with their accountant or tax advisor. Booking losses can reduce tax liability and result in refunds.

Enhanced Unemployment Insurance Benefits

The first line of defense in a crisis like this is use of traditional and enhanced unemployment benefits. The federal aid package recently passed by Congress provides for enhanced unemployment insurance benefits. These enhanced benefits coupled with New York’s existing program may help some employees receive as much as $1,100 per week to help weather this health crisis and economic storm. We encourage all residents of Schenectady County who have been furloughed or who have lost their jobs to apply for unemployment insurance immediately. These benefits are designed to help provide economic assistance during the time period when many workers are being asked to stay at home. For more information this fact sheet should be helpful.

The UI program has been enhanced to provide more benefits and to cover more impacted workers and employees. See updated program information here.

More information about UI is available here.

Business Support Programs

There are also new programs designed to help businesses retain employees and cover the cost of some operating expenses. While some of the new federal resources include disaster loans, we are cautioning businesses that adding debt is something to be taken very seriously given current business conditions. One very large new federal program – the $349 billion Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is definitely worth consideration by our business community. It provides for loans which can be forgiven if certain requirements are met. More information about the Small Business Administration’s PPP Program can be found here.

Payroll Protection Program (PPP)

The SBA’s Payroll Protection Program is up and running and accepting applications. $349 billion is available to help small businesses retain and pay employees and cover some operating expenses in addition to payroll costs. These are forgivable loans.

Additional information including the PPP application form can be found below. Please contact your business banking or credit union contacts to access this program.

Payroll Protection Program Overview

Payroll Protection Program Borrower Information

Payroll Protection Program Application Form

A borrower information fact sheet can be found here.

Parking Lots

The Schenectady County Metroplex Development Authority has waived all parking fees at 13 parking lots and the Metroplex parking garage to make it easier to pick up meals at the many downtown restaurants offering take-out and delivery service. Parking lot locations can be found at www.parkschenectady.com.

Metroplex is working closely with the Downtown Schenectady Improvement Corporation (DSIC) and Discover Schenectady to promote restaurants and other service providers as they continue to serve customers.

Our economic development team is also helping many manufacturing companies and construction firms with questions about essential service definitions and other details related to federal and state assistance programs.

We are also working with companies that have Metroplex loans to assist them through these difficult times.

The 2020 NYS Presidential Primary has been postponed until June 23, 2020.

Mental Health Resources

NYS Office of Mental Health Resources:

Local Resources:

  • Ellis Hospital “Living Room”: offers telephone support to individuals in the community who are in need of mental health/emotional support at (518) 243-1523 between 12pm-8pm
  • Mental Health Empowerment Project
    • (518) 235-2173
    • Peer mentors available M-F, 9am to 9pm
    • Phone support for anyone seeking resources or a supportive ear during this difficult time
    • All calls are confidential and dree to the public
    • Also operate a 24/7 confidential “warm” line where trained mentors are available at 1-800-643-7462
  • 211
    • You can call United Way’s free 2-1-1 helpline 24/7 with questions or concerns about COVID-19. This service is available in over 200 languages.
    • Connects callers with resources providing food, shelter, rent assistance, clothing, child care options and other types of community assistance. Trained referral specialists are multi-lingual and available to help find individuals the help they need.

Schenectady County COVID-19 Emergency Response Coalition

Schenectady County and The Schenectady Foundation are partnering with many other community partners to support families in our area during the pandemic. The Coalition will operate a hotline out of the new Boys and Girls Clubhouse in Mont Pleasant.

The Coalition was created to help address non-medical, coronavirus-related issues and ensure those who are quarantined or isolated, seniors, and other at-risk individuals get the basic supplies they need while they remain at home. The main focus of the Coalition is delivering groceries and other essentials during this difficult time, while also identifying services offered by partner organizations for those with additional needs.

Schenectady County residents in need of supplies should call (518) 621-3536. Staff will work with callers to identify their needs, including any dietary or allergy restrictions, and set up a drop-off time. Representatives from the County Department of Social Services will also be on hand to assist with shelter, temporary assistance programs and Medicaid issues. Staff will also have information about resources available to address other identified needs.

Click here to learn more about The Schenectady Foundation’s Schenectady Rebuilding Families Fund, or to make a donation.

Stay home for you. Stay home for them.

Over the last couple of months, it has become evident that the decisions we make as individuals, and as a community, can have a lasting impact on those around us, especially the most vulnerable. Unless you have an urgent reason to be out – stay home. Some of us may not have any symptoms, but can still be contagious to those around us, without even knowing it.

If you are concerned that you may have been in contact with someone with COVID-19 or feel that you have symptoms of COVID-19, call your primary care provider. If you do not have a primary care provider, call Schenectady County Public Health Services at (518) 386-2824, option 2. Do not just show up at your doctor’s office or other health care facility.

County offices are shutting down, with the exception of critical services. Residents who have urgent business with a County department should call that department before visiting, for further instructions.

Schenectady County urges residents to be on the lookout for scams. Residents should take care to verify anyone who contacts them, to make sure they are who they say they are, before giving out any information or allowing access to your home.

New York State has also established a COVID-19 Hotline: 1-888-364-3065.

Scotia Village Referendum Scheduled for April 7 Postponed

Update on Schenectady County Services and Facilities:

Schenectady County Clerk

The Schenectady County Clerk’s Office is closed to the public until further notice.

The Schenectady County Clerk’s Office is excited to announce that all public records digitally available in the recording office are now available online through two online services: Landex REMOTE and Webstore. For information regarding these services, visit www.schenectadycounty.com/CountyClerk and select ‘Land Records’ on the left.

Landex continues to offer all of our digital documents online via Webstore and Remote. The County Clerk has waived the "per minute" search fee for Landex Remote until normal business hours are resumed. 

Those wishing to record their documents can do so via e-recording or mail. 

Questions regarding web searches are being handled by Landex. However, if a document isn't available online, constituents can email CountyClerk@schenectadycounty.com and we can assist to the best of our ability. We can file DBAs via mail, and will accept a DBA signed with a copy of a license should a notary not be available. The Recording Office remains closed to the public, but any emergent situation can be emailed to us and we can work to accommodate an in-person recording.

Schenectady County Soil & Water Conservation District/Compost Facility

The Compost and Resident Recycling Facility will be OPEN beginning April 1, 2020 from 8 am to 3 pm Monday through Saturday. 

Permits will be sold.

All products will be available to purchase.

Household recycling and electronic recycling will be accepted.

**BULK items will no longer be accepted**

Please adhere to the SOCIAL-DISTANCING practice when using the facility.

2020 Tree & Shrub Sale is cancelled for the year.

Finance Department/Real Property Tax Service Agency (RPTSA)

Services provided by the Department of Finance for the public will be provided through alternative means. Walk-ins and appointments are currently not being scheduled or accepted. All questions or requests for information should be made by contacting (518) 388-4260.

Delinquent tax payments: Individuals seeking to pay delinquent taxes should call the Department of Finance for an updated outstanding balance prior to making payment. Payments can be made by personal or certified check, do not send cash. Payments can be mailed to:

Schenectady County Department of Finance

620 State Street

Schenectady, NY 12305

Tax payments will be processed and applied against delinquent taxes based on the United States postmark date of the envelope associated with the payment. Property owners will be mailed a receipt of payment for their records.

Certificates of Residency: Issuance of Certificates of Residency are temporarily suspended given the current closure of the SUNY and CUNY systems.

Deeds: Questions regarding researching, stamping and recording of deeds can be addressed by calling RPTSA at (518) 388-4246.

Tax Maps: Contact the RPTSA at (518) 388-4246 for tax map-related questions or information.

Schenectady County DMV

The Schenectady County Department of Motor Vehicles is closed for in-person transactions until further notice.

The Schenectady DMV is now able to process original vehicle registrations and plate transfers!  These transactions were typically done in-person. Please follow these instructions for how to complete your transaction.

NYS DMV is CLOSED until at least April 19, 2020.

If you need a registration renewed, please mail your renewal form to the Schenectady County DMV for processing! While we are closed to the public, we are working hard to process your transactions received via mail and drop box. We are located at: 2025 State Street, Schenectady, NY 12304. Transactions in sealed envelopes can also be placed in the drop box outside of our building.

If you have any questions, please email them to CountyClerk@schenectadycounty.com and we will respond accordingly.

Senior Meal Sites

Schenectady County Friendship Cafes that provide noontime lunch meals at the Glenville Senior Center on Worden Road, Jewish Community Center on Balltown Road, Our Lady of Fatima Church in Delanson and the Ten Eyck Apartment Building in Schenectady will be closed through Tuesday, April 14, 2020.

Meals will continue to be delivered and distributed at the Ten Eyck Apartment Building, 375 Broadway, in Schenectady, for current congregate meal participants who have no other viable alternative to obtain or prepare a meal.

Starting Monday, March 23, 2020 the Home Delivered Meals program (Meals on Wheels) delivery schedule will change to Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and will provide a shelf-stable and frozen meal to current recipients.

Schenectady County Recreational Facility

The Schenectady County Recreational Facility (ice rink) is closed.

Schenectady County Public Library System

All County libraries are closed.

Schenectady County Jail

Visitation has been suspended at the County Jail.

Glendale Home

Visitation has been suspended at the County’s Glendale Home.

What You Can Do

In an effort to reduce the risk of infection and slow the spread of COVID-19, residents are urged to take the following precautions:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially before eating. If not available, use hand sanitizer with minimum 60 percent alcohol content;
  • Practice social distancing of at least 6 feet;
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth;
  • Stay home unless you have an urgent need to be out;
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. If not available, sneeze or cough into your elbow; and
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

 


 

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