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Daily Briefing – 184

Post: Nov. 3, 2020

Election Results

It is expected to be a long night and results may still be coming in. Use the links below to see the results in the presidential contest as well as to learn which party will control the U.S. Senate and the extent of the Democrat majority in New York State. 

COVID and Cluster Update 

Governor Cuomo issues a press release today stating that New York continues its effective micro-cluster approach with focused testing and targeted restrictions in areas where the metrics show sustained high levels of viral spread. The release detailed New York’s COVID-19 tracking data from Monday November 2nd.  Tracking data for the hotspots and the rest of the State are below.

  • Hotspot Zones: 2.63%
  • Orange Orange Zone: 2.09%
  • Rockland Hot Zone: 2.48%
  • Statewide: 1.81%
  • Statewide excluding hotspots: 1.71%
  • Statewide hospitalizations: 1,227 (268 in ICU) 

Here are some useful websites:

Managing Stress and Anxiety During the Election

Our friends and Associate Members, Emergency One offer some advice on dealing with the news over the next few days (weeks?)

“We’re at the apex of the election cycle but that does not mean that heightened tension and the polarization that goes along with the election will go away after tomorrow. When “your side” loses, it can feel like the world is going off track in terrible and permanent ways. You can feel personally threatened in ways that trigger deep and uncomfortable emotions.

How can you manage your anxiety in times of political conflict while remaining positive? Click for some tips to help you through the next several days.”

Managing Stress and Anxiety During the Election

SBA Releases PPP Necessity Questionnaires

Council  Associate Member and friend PKF O’Connor Davies notes that the The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced last week that it will be issuing Loan Necessity Questionnaires to Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Borrowers that, together with their affiliates, received PPP loans with an original principal amount of $2 million or more. According to the SBA, the purpose of these questionnaires is to facilitate the collection of supplemental information that will be used by SBA loan reviewers to evaluate the good-faith certification that Borrowers made on their PPP loan application forms that economic uncertainty made the loan request necessary. Two different versions of the loan Necessity Questionnaire have been released, Form 3509 for for-profit Borrowers and Form 3510 for not-for-profit Borrowers.

Read more at PKF O’Connor Davies

Factories Bounce Back Around the World as Consumers Rally

Factories across the globe bounced back strongly in October, as manufacturers hired more people and ramped up production of consumer goods in hot demand despite rising coronavirus infections.

Fresh surveys of purchasing managers for manufacturers showed a continuing divide between companies that are making products—from cars to electronics—and companies providing face-to-face services that people are shunning. The surveys released Monday indicated that the manufacturing sector continued to revive as the fourth quarter began, especially in global powerhouses such as the U.S. and Germany.

Read more in the WSJ

Commerce Department: U.S. Factory Orders Rise Solidly

The Commerce Department said on Tuesday that factory orders rose 1.1% after climbing 0.6% in August. Orders were boosted by increased demand for primary metals, computers and electronic products as well as motor vehicles and fabricated metal products. But orders for machinery, furniture and electrical equipment, appliances and components fell.

Economists polled by Reuters had forecast factory orders would rise 1.0% in September.

Read more at Reuters

3 Experts On How COVID-19 Changed Manufacturing and Supply Chains Around the World

Fast Company’s Shape of Tomorrow series asked business leaders to share their inside perspective on how the COVID-19 era is transforming their industries. Here’s what’s been lost—and what could be gained—in the new world order.

The food business used to be highly predictable, but the coronavirus pandemic changed all that, forcing General Mills to “build new tools, new rituals and new processes” in response to radical shifts in consumer demand, according to Chief Supply Chain Officer John Church. He and leaders at bedding company Boll & Branch and manufacturing technology company Nanotronics share how they and their businesses have adapted to the global crisis.

Read what they had to say at Fast Company

CMS Acts to Ensure Coverage of Life-Saving COVID-19 Vaccines & Therapeutics

 The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released a comprehensive plan with proactive measures to remove regulatory barriers and ensure consistent coverage and payment for the administration of an eventual vaccine for millions of Americans. CMS released a set of toolkits for providers, states and insurers to help the health care system prepare to swiftly administer the vaccine once it is available. These resources are designed to increase the number of providers that can administer the vaccine, ensure adequate reimbursement for administering the vaccine in Medicare, while making it clear to private insurers and Medicaid programs their responsibility to cover the vaccine at no charge to beneficiaries.

Read the press release

Data Privacy Considerations for Employers Collecting Health Data from Employees 

With the backdrop of the coronavirus pandemic, for the first time ever, many companies are collecting more private information, including health information such as temperature screenings and health questionnaires, from their employees to assist with a safe transition back to the workplace from work at home.  In doing so, there are several data privacy laws and principles that companies may wish to consider when determining how they will collect, use, disclose and maintain this employee data.

This article is designed to address the balance between collecting health information from employees to maintain a safe workplace with those employees’ privacy concerns. 

Read more at EHS Today

Movement on Million Dollar Next-Gen Mask Challenge

XPRIZE, the world’s leader in designing and operating incentive competitions to solve humanity’s grand challenges, is pleased to announce, in tandem with the rollout of their seven industry partners, the selection of the 25 international teams moving forward in the $1 Million XPRIZE Next-Gen Mask Challenge. Youth representing 12 countries moved forward in the challenge based on their design’s ingenuity, effectiveness, X-factor of style, and ability to overcome common barriers to use.

Read more at IndustryWeek