Tag: Andrew Cuomo

Columbia Comeback: Governor Announces Schools Will Open in Fall 

Columbia Comeback: Governor Announces New York Schools Will Open in Fall 

(WRGB) – New York schools have been given the go ahead to open in the fall.

“They are all authorized to open,” Governor Andrew Cuomo said in a conference call today.

Districts are planning how to adapt to new safety guidelines. That includes classroom learning, virtual learning as well as transportation on school buses.

“If any state can do it, this state can do it because we’ve been smart since day one,” Cuomo said. “We can bring the same level of intelligence that we brought to the economic reopening.”

Of the 800+ school districts in New York state, 127 districts have not submitted reopening plans to the New York State Department of Education. Fifty districts’ plans are incomplete. The department will continue to review plans over the weekend and notify districts if they need to resubmit their plans with more detail.

Cuomo said districts will be asked to more specifically address three elements of their plans: remote learning, COVID-19 testing for both students and teachers, and contact tracing. Those expanded plans will be submitted to the state and posted on the district websites.

“Different school districts have different theories,” Cuomo said. “But that question of testing for students an teachers is a high level of concerns.”

Cuomo stressed districts need to have discussions with the parents in their districts, a continuing theme in his conference calls and news conferences this week when talking about school reopening plans for the fall.

The governor is also asking each district to hold three online discussions with parents to answer questions that they have about the plans to return to learning in the fall. Those discussions need to be completed by August 21. For the big districts in New York – New York City, Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, Yonkers, Albany, Mount Vernon, and Utica – five online discussions with parents will be held.

School districts will also be required to set up at least one discussion with teachers only to review plans and bring up any questions they want to have.



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Columbia County Awarded $5.3M in REDC Grants


Columbia County received 20 individual awards totaling approximately $5.3 million from the state’s Regional Economic Development Council (REDC).

The awards ranged from $30,000 to nearly $2 million, going to a variety of initiatives such as arts programs, aging infrastructure development and Main Street revitalization.

One major award is for a new Shaker Museum for Columbia County. Shaker Museum Library will receive $1,569,000 from Empire State Development to renovate a large 19th century masonry building in downtown Chatham, into a state-of-the-art museum facility to house its library and object collection. It will provide flexible space for exhibitions, community programming, and educational activities.

Other Columbia County awards include $145,000 for studio restorations at Art Omi Inc., $950,139 for performance space restorations at Basilica Hudson, $750,000 for the city of Hudson’s stormwater system upgrades, $197,000 to the Friends of Clermont for renovations at Livingston Mansion.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the awards allocated across the state, a continuation of a program that has been instated since 2011.

The Regional Economic Development Council (REDC) initiative is a key component of Governor Cuomo’s approach to State investment and economic development. In 2011, Governor Cuomo established 10 Regional Councils to develop long-term strategic plans for economic growth for their regions. The Councils are public-private partnerships made up of local experts and stakeholders from business, academia, local government, and non-governmental organizations. The Regional Councils have redefined the way New York invests in jobs and economic growth by putting in place a community-based, bottom up approach and establishing a competitive process for State resources.

After nine rounds of the REDC process, more than $6.9 billion has been awarded to more than 8,300 job creation and community development projects consistent with each region’s strategic plans, projecting to create and retain more than 240,000 jobs. For more information on the Regional Councils, visit www.regionalcouncils.ny.gov.


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Cuomo Awards $10 Million to Hudson for Downtown Revitalization

The city of Hudson is one of 10 winners in a statewide competition for $10 million downtown revitalization grants. This is the second year for the contest, which Governor Cuomo created to reinvigorate aging downtowns.

In a press event on Tuesday at Hudson’s Hudson Hall, Cuomo said the grants are awarded to communities that already are growing, show promise, evidence of community investment, and enlightened government.

Hudson Mayor Tiffany Martin Hamilton said that the money will support efforts to make the town more attractive to businesses and visitors while enhancing resident access to education, recreation and employment.


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Jeff McKinney is a Realtor in Columbia County, NY. Connect with him on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, or Pinterest.