Ryan Williamson

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Friday that schools in New York state should stay closed until at least April 15 to continue efforts to slow the spread of the coronavirus. 

Rochester City School District Superintendent Terry Dade said Cuomo’s decision does not affect the district’s approach right now. 

“The extension by the governor takes us to April 15,” said Dade. “Which is just beyond spring break. So there’s not a whole lot of difference with the instruction that we will provide.”


U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer called the $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus package “the exact kind of medicine” that the nation and the state needs. 

During a conference call with U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand on Wednesday, Schumer said nearly every New Yorker will likely be touched by the aid package.

“We can tell New Yorkers that help is on the way,” said Schumer. “It's quick aid and large aid, big aid.”

The package includes billions for state and county governments, including $128 million for Monroe County, and funding for transit systems like RTS, hospitals, small businesses, nonprofits, Native American reservations, and extended unemployment payments. 

Gov. Andrew Cuomo's office

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Friday that he is ordering all workers in nonessential businesses to stay home and banning gatherings statewide.

"Only essential businesses can have workers commuting to the job or on the job," Cuomo said of an executive order he will sign Friday.

The new rules will go into effect on Sunday, Cuomo said.

Essential businesses include medical providers, food suppliers and transit services.

James Brown / WXXI News

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has directed that all local government workforces be reduced by 50 percent at any one time in an effort to slow the spread of novel coronavirus.

With that, local leaders are figuring out how to continue serving residents with far fewer people in their offices.

James Brown / WXXI News

Under orders from Gov. Andrew Cuomo, the entire State University of New York system will switch to distance learning to slow the spread of the coronavirus. 

That means SUNY Geneseo, The College at Brockport, Monroe Community College, Finger Lakes Community College and other state colleges will stop in-person classes on March 19.

Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren said she “could not be silent” on potential state laws that would mandate the HPV vaccine for children born after 2009 and sex education for all public school students.

Warren said she’s OK with traditional vaccines like those that prevent measles and mumps. But as a mother of a 9-year-old, she said a proposed state law that would require the HPV vaccine is a step too far. 

HPV is a common virus spread through intimate contact that can lead to certain types of cancer, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

Brett Dahlberg / WXXI News

Members of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Medicaid redesign team were in Rochester on Tuesday for a public forum on plans to cut costs in one of the state’s most expensive programs.

The team is supposed to present recommendations next month to save the state $2.5 billion in Medicaid expenses in the next fiscal year.

In Rochester, they heard from a succession of health care workers and executives who are worried about potential cuts.

Lancet Respiratory Health

Researchers at the University of Rochester Medical Center published new guidance Friday for doctors looking to diagnose lung injuries caused by vaping.

The article, published in the journal Lancet Respiratory Medicine, examined a series of patients who came to URMC with “respiratory failure of unknown origin” and a “history of e-cigarette or vape use.”

They found that x-rays of all the patients’ lungs showed signs of pneumonia and inflammation, but no evidence of infection. Ruling out infection as the cause of the respiratory failure allows doctors to move toward a diagnosis of a vaping injury, the researchers found.

We’re joined by Governor Andrew Cuomo, who discusses updates with the REDI Commission. He was in Rochester on Wednesday to announce that the state has awarded $133 million to 63 projects along the Lake Ontario shoreline. That funding will be used to rebuild and revitalize areas that sustained severe damage due to high lake levels.

We discuss the impact the Governor hopes that funding will have, and how lake flooding has affected the state’s economy. Our guests:

*Note: To apply for the Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence River Flood Relief and Recovery Grant Program, click here.

Governor Andrew Cuomo joins us to share updates from the Resiliency and Economic Development Initiative (REDI) Commission.