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Daily Briefing – 174

Post: Oct. 20, 2020

Two States added to Restricted States List, Non-Essential Between Connecticut, New Jersey and Pennsylvania Discouraged

Governor Cuomo yesterday announced that Arizona and Maryland have been added to New York’s COVID-19 travel advisory. No areas have been removed. 43 states meet the criteria for requiring individuals who have traveled to New York to quarantine for 14 days. The quarantine applies to any person arriving from an area with a positive test rate higher than 10 per 100,000 residents over a 7-day rolling average or an area with a 10 percent or higher positivity rate over a 7-day rolling average. 

Neighboring states Connecticut, New Jersey and Pennsylvania now meet the criteria for the travel advisory, however, given the interconnected nature of the region and mode of transport between us, a quarantine on these states is not practically viable. That said, New York State highly discourages, to the extent practical, non-essential travel to and from these states while they meet the travel advisory criteria. 

Cuomo: “Hot Spot” Numbers Improve

At a briefing for reporters yesterday Governor Cuomo provided an overview of New York’s COVID-19 tracking data from Monday, October 19th.  Tracking data for the hotspots and the rest of the State is below.
Summary of positivity rates:
  • 20 hotspot zip codes: 2.9%
  • Orange Hot Zone: 6.00%
  • Rockland Hot Zone: 1.99%
  • Statewide: 1.3%
  • Statewide excluding hotspots: 1.2%
Here are some useful links:

In Advance of “Deadline” Pelosi and Mnuchin Make Progress in Stimulus Talks

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin made progress in their latest coronavirus stimulus talks Monday as time runs short to reach a deal before the 2020 election.

In a nearly one-hour phone call, the pair “continued to narrow their differences,” the California Democrat’s spokesman, Drew Hammill, said in a tweeted statement. Pelosi has directed House committee chairs to work to resolve areas of disagreement with the White House, and the speaker and Mnuchin plan to talk again Tuesday, Hammill added.

Read more at CNBC

NYS Paid Sick Leave Guidance and FAQ

The New York State Department of Labor has released guidelines and FAQs for the paid sick leave law enacted earlier this year. The guidance addresses several issues including: the amount of leave employees are eligible to receive, accrual calculations, employee eligibility to participate in the program, permitted uses for paid leave, existing employer programs, and retaliation against employees for use of paid sick leave.

All private-sector employees in New York State are covered, regardless of industry, occupation, part-time status, and overtime exempt status. Federal, state, and local government employees are not covered, but employees of charter schools, private schools, and not-for-profit corporations are covered.

OSHA Announces $1,222,156 In Coronavirus Violations

Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic through Oct. 8, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited 85 establishments for violations relating to coronavirus, resulting in proposed penalties totaling $1,222,156.

OSHA inspections have resulted in the agency citing employers for violations, including failures to:

Read more at OSHA.gov

Atlanta Fed’s Bostic Says Recovery Threatened By Permanent Layoffs

It will be a while before the U.S. economy is fully recovered and before the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates or remove the support it is providing financial markets, Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank President Raphael Bostic said on Monday.

“On balance, I am comfortable with our current policy stance,” Bostic said in remarks prepared for a virtual event organized for the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association Annual Meeting. “As I have detailed today, though the U.S. economy continues to show clear signs of recovery, there remain significant portions where the recovery has been weak or nonexistent.”

Read more at Reuters

New York’s Private Jobs Rebound Still Trails Most of U.S.

The Empire Center’s E.J. McMahon reports that as of September, New York’s private job count was down 12.1 percent from the same month in 2019, based on non-seasonally adjusted BLS and state Labor Department data.

The Empire State’s year-to-year decrease was almost double the national decline of 6.9 percent. Only one other state—tourism-intensive Hawaii—was further below its 2019 employment level, with a decline of 21.5 percent. As shown on the map in the article, Alaska and Vermont were the only other states with double-digit percentage declines in employment on a year-to-year basis.

Read more from the Empire Center

CDC Releases New COVID-19 Vaccine Specific Web Content

The CDC has added vaccine-specific content to its COVID-19 website. CDC’s new resources include information on vaccination planning, how vaccine safety is being ensured, and frequently asked questions. These resources are intended to clarify how COVID-19 vaccine recommendations will be made and how the vaccines will be monitored for safety, in order to build trust and confidence in future COVID-19 vaccines.

The CDC anticipates making frequent updates to this website, as well as CDC’s Vaccination and Immunization website, as more information becomes available and as vaccines become authorized or approved and recommended for use in the United States.

Read more at NACCHO 

DOD, HHS Name Partners to Administer COVID-19 Vaccines in Long-Term Care Facilities

Last Friday, Operation Warp Speed (OWS) named Walgreens and CVS as nationwide partners in the effort. Long-term care facilities will be able to sign up to have either CVS or Walgreens come to their locations to administer COVID-19 vaccinations to residents and staff. The program is free of charge to facilities, and is opt-in only.

“We are not imposing the solution on any nursing home,” Mango said. “This is voluntary, they have to opt in. This is an adjunct to what other solutions may be, but this will be something that will be available to every nursing home and senior living facility in the country.”

Read more at the DOD

GM Announces $2 Billion to Retrofit Tennessee Plant for Electric Cadillac

Spring Hill Manufacturing in Tennessee will join General Motor Co.’s Michigan plants in Detroit-Hamtramck and Orion Township as the company’s third electric vehicle plant. In a statement released October 20, GM said it would invest $2 billion in Spring Hill and a combined $152.5 million of investments on plants in Michigan.

The Spring Hill Assembly Plant, which currently produces two Cadillacs, will add a third to its production, the electric Cadillac Lyriq. The factory will build both the traditional XT6 and XT5 Cadillacs in addition to the new electric luxury model. According to GM, the renovation work at Spring Hill will include comprehensive upgrades to general assembly and major expansions of the paint and body shops, which will “begin immediately.”

Read more in IndustryWeek