NY/PA briefs

Multiple bomb threats in Monticello and more

What's new in the Upper Delaware region January 28 to February 3

Posted 1/27/21

Multiple bomb threats made in Monticello

MONTICELLO, NY — In the late morning of January 20, three separate bomb threats at the McDonald’s restaurant on Route 42 in Monticello, the …

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NY/PA briefs

Multiple bomb threats in Monticello and more

What's new in the Upper Delaware region January 28 to February 3


Multiple bomb threats made in Monticello

MONTICELLO, NY — In the late morning of January 20, three separate bomb threats at the McDonald’s restaurant on Route 42 in Monticello, the nearby Walmart and another McDonald’s in Liberty spurred an investigation from multiple law enforcement agencies.

Customers and staff were evacuated as K-9 units with the state police conducted a sweep of each location. No explosive devices were located.

The Liberty Police Department and Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office are working with state police to investigate who placed these threats. State police said that they appear to have been made from out of state; the threats also had no apparent connection to the inauguration of President Joe Biden, which was taking place at the time.

Sullivan debuts vaccine notification system

LIBERTY, NY — To meet numerous public requests to be notified of upcoming vaccination clinics, Sullivan County Public Health Services recently launched an online signup form open to local and regional residents.

“Our offices have received hundreds of calls from people seeking the COVID-19 vaccine,” said public health director Nancy McGraw. “The amount has overwhelmed our staff, and since most callers are simply asking when an upcoming clinic will be available, our amazing coworkers at [Information Technology Services] have rapidly developed a notification system to do just that.”

Anyone interested in being notified of upcoming public health-run COVID-19 vaccination clinics can sign up on the county’s vaccine information page at www.bit.ly/SullivanVaccineNotif.

“Anyone who signs up will receive notifications listing the date, location and registration link for upcoming county-run clinics, as they become open to registration. These notifications will continue until Public Health confirms they have successfully received their first dose of vaccine,” said McGraw.

Biden taps Levine for HHS

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The face of Pennsylvania’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, PA Health Secretary Rachel Levine has been picked by President Joe Biden to serve as assistant secretary of health and human services. She’s slated to become to become the first Senate-confirmed transgender federal official in U.S. history.

“Dr. Rachel Levine will bring the steady leadership and essential expertise we need to get people through this pandemic—no matter their zip code, race, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability—and meet the public health needs of our country in this critical moment and beyond,” Biden said in a statement. “She is a historic and deeply qualified choice to help lead our administration’s health efforts.”

Aside from the current pandemic, Levine has also focused on issues like LGBTQ health, the opioid crisis, medical marijuana and eating disorders.

Wolf names Levine’s replacements

HARRISBURG, PA — With Health Secretary Rachel Levine tapped to serve in the Biden Administration, Gov. Tom Wolf has announced his plans to nominate Alison Beam, former deputy chief of staff, as her replacement. Unlike Levine, Beam is not a medical doctor, but Wolf said that she is an experienced choice who will make COVID-19 vaccine distribution her first priority.

“Alison Beam is a talented public servant who brings years of experience in health care policy and implementation to this position,” Wolf said in a statement. “Alison knows that a strong, widely available and successful vaccination strategy is the path out of the pains of this pandemic.”

Wolf also named Dr. Wendy Braund as interim acting physician general, replacing Levine in that position. She had been serving as the COVID-19 response director for the state health department.

Beam and Braund began their new positions on January 23.

Pike pilot vaccine program serves 1a

MILFORD, PA — Pike County’s Emergency Management Agency and Board of Commissioners conducted a pilot drive-through vaccination clinic on Saturday, January 23 at Delaware Valley High School.

Five hundred vaccines were distributed from the PA Department of Health through Wayne Memorial Health System to administer the first of two doses of the Moderna vaccination to residents of Pike County within the 1a group, including senior citizens and those who require mobility assistance. A subsequent clinic will be scheduled to administer the second dose to this group.

“We are grateful to the Department of Health, the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency, and all of the partners from the federal, state and local levels who have made this pilot program possible,’’ said the Pike County Commissioners. “We also want to recognize our surrounding hospitals, pharmacies and primary care providers as they all work toward getting the vaccine to Pike County residents.”

For the latest updates on vaccinations in Pike County, visit www.pikepa.org.

EPA accepting diesel reduction applications

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced the availability of grant funding to implement projects that reduce emissions from the nation’s existing fleet of older diesel engines. EPA anticipates awarding approximately $46 million in grant funding to eligible applicants, subject to the availability of funds.

Nearly all highway freight trucks, locomotives and commercial marine vessels are powered by diesel engines. EPA is soliciting applications nationwide for projects that significantly reduce diesel emissions and exposure, especially from fleets operating at goods movements facilities in areas designated as having poor air quality. Priority for funding will also be given to projects that engage local communities and that demonstrate the intention to continue reducing emissions after the project has ended.

Eligible applicants include regional, state, local or tribal agencies. Nonprofit organizations may apply if they provide pollution reduction or educational services to diesel fleet owners or promote air quality and clean transportation. Applicants may apply until Tuesday, March 16.

Potential exposures at Monticello ski resort

MONTICELLO, NY — Sullivan County Public Health Services is alerting anyone who visited Holiday Mountain Ski Area on Sunday, January 17 between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. that they may have been exposed to someone who has since tested positive for COVID-19.

“The individual became symptomatic on January 19 and is experiencing mild symptoms at this time. Known exposures have been quarantined,” said Sullivan County Public Health Director Nancy McGraw. “Holiday Mountain staff have been cooperative and decided to voluntarily close the ski club for the weekend of January 23 to 24. The facility has been proactive about notifying the public, cleaning and working with Sullivan County Public Health Services staff and NYS contact tracers.”

If someone thinks they have been exposed, they should self-quarantine for 14 days and call their health care provider if symptoms develop, or call Sullivan County Public Health Services at 845/292-5910.

Symptoms may appear two to 14 days after exposure to the virus. 

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