PA & NY governors issue school mask mandate
HARRISBURG, PA & ALBANY, NY— Allison Beam, acting PA health secretary, issued an order on Tuesday, August 31, requiring masks to be worn …
HARRISBURG, PA & ALBANY, NY— Allison Beam, acting PA health secretary, issued an order on Tuesday, August 31, requiring masks to be worn inside K-12 school buildings, early learning programs and child care providers. The order took effect 12:01 a.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 7, 2021.
NY Gov. Kathy Hochul announced Thursday, Sept. 2 that the New York State Department of Health has finalized and released official guidance for classroom instruction. These new actions follow the governor’s announcement last week of a mask requirement for everyone in school buildings during instructional hours and extracurricular activities.
HONESDALE, PA — Sen. Lisa Baker (R-20) and Rep. Jonathan Fritz (R-111) announced on Tuesday, August 31 that Honesdale Borough will receive $500,000 in state grant money from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) for its Vine Street Stormwater Mitigation Project following a meeting with officials from the borough and Wayne County.
This funding comes in response to a severe storm event that occurred back in May which compromised multiple areas of stormwater infrastructure. The plan is envisioned to include three phases. Once complete, the drainage area would have a more direct stormwater delivery to final daylight at the Lackawaxen River.
HARRISBURG, PA — The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) announced that on Wednesday, September 1, the Independent Regulatory Review Commission (IRRC) gave Pennsylvania the go-ahead to participate in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) by a vote of 3 to 2.
RGGI is a “cap and invest” program that sets a regulatory limit on CO2 emissions from fossil fuel-fired electric generating units (EGU) and permits the trading of CO2 allowances to promote cost-efficient compliance with the regulatory limit.
ALBANY, NY — Early in the morning of Thursday, September 2, Gov. Kathy Hochul signed into law a new moratorium on COVID-related residential and commercial evictions for New York State, which is in effect until January 15, 2022. Under the new law, all protections of the Tenant Safe Harbor Act for residential tenants who are suffering financial hardship as a result of the pandemic will remain in place, along with new protections on commercial evictions.
Hochul urges New Yorkers who are struggling to pay their rent to apply for assistance through the state’s Emergency Rental Assistance Program, or ERAP. Applicants are automatically protected from eviction while their application is pending and will receive a year of eviction protections if they qualify for assistance.
REGION — Hurricane Ida came through the Upper Delaware Region throughout the week of August 30, with heavy rain on Wednesday, September 1 which led to the NPS closing the river corridor at all access points.
In response to Hurricane Ida, NY Gov. Kathy Hochul requested and received a Federal Emergency Declaration for 14 downstate counties following the widespread damage caused by the remnants of Hurricane Ida: this declaration included Sullivan and Orange counties. Federal aid granted by the declaration included personnel, equipment, supplies and financial assistance to help with the continued response, rescue and recovery efforts necessary to save lives and protect public health and safety. PA Gov. Tom Wolf signed a state proclamation of disaster emergency in preparation for Hurricane Ida, and the Commonwealth Response Coordination Center (CRCC) began 24-hour operations at 8 a.m. Wednesday, September 1.
ALBANY, NY — Early in the morning of Thursday, September 2, Gov. Kathy Hochul signed legislation extending virtual access to public meetings under New York State’s Open Meetings Law, which allows New Yorkers to virtually participate in local government meetings during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The legislation, which was initially implemented by executive order during last year’s state of emergency, allows state and local government meetings that are normally held in person to be held remotely instead, as long as the public has the ability to view or listen to the meeting and as long as the meeting is recorded and later transcribed. This statutory change will reduce the need for congregation at public meetings while the delta variant is prevalent, while ensuring public business can continue. Meetings can be held either over a video service such as Zoom or by phone. There is no change to the requirement that public bodies must provide notice to constituents that a meeting is taking place, and they are required to inform constituents how to access the public meeting virtually.