Yesterday marked a full week since the last positive COVID-19 case was reported by the Cortland County Health Department.
In the same seven days, 149 negative test results were registered out of a total of 926 to-date.
Total positives remain at 32, with now 28 people recovered and four active cases including two patients still hospitalized.
Health officials also continue to monitor 30 others at this time.
The county has somehow managed to keep relatively low numbers compared to many of its neighboring counties.
Broome County’s death toll rose to 15 yesterday and Onondaga County’s is currently the highest in CNY at 23 fatalities.
Meanwhile, Governor Cuomo and State Attorney General Letitia James have partnered with the NYSDOH to investigate nursing homes that may have violated orders requiring them to communicate test results and deaths to residents’ families.
That comes amid reports some haven’t been doing so within the required 24 hours, as determined by state law.
“The State has very strict guidelines on privately run facilities,” said Cuomo. “We’re going to undertake an investigation of nursing homes now to make sure they’re following the rules… They get paid to take care of a resident and they have to do it in accordance with State rules and if they don’t we will take appropriate action.”
Cuomo says any facility determined to be in violation could be fined $10,000 per violation or potentially lose their operating license.
Meanwhile some good news for local economies, as a new bipartisan deal was passed yesterday expanding the federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loans, which were exhausted in under 2 weeks then replenished by the latest bill.
Another $484B has been allocated to help small businesses, farms and hospitals in need across the U.S.
Locally, Cortland County BDC director Garry VanGorder said small business owners are finally starting to hear back on funding through both programs.
He also said the newest investment in SBA loans is 10x what it was the first time around and encourages more businesses to apply:
“I hope that as this continues to roll out more will sign up,” VanGorder said. “There’s a lot more money in the EIDL loans now – it was originally $6 billion, now its $60 billion. I think the government acknowledges these lifelines are essential.”
VanGorder is set to discuss the topic further on tomorrow morning’s weekly Meet Cortland County segment, airing at 9 am and posted afterwards at WXHC.com.