BINGHAMTON, NY – Broome County is reopen, sort of, for business.
The Southern Tier is one of 5 regions in the state that received clearance from Governor Cuomo to begin Phase 1 of the reopening today in construction, manufacturing, wholesale and supply chain, agriculture and curbside retail.
The Agency estimates that about 13 hundred establishments in Broome County are in those qualifying sectors and that about 40 percent of them had remained open due to their essential nature.
County Executive Jason Garnar says that among the businesses he’s spoken to, all who were able to reopen, planned to.
Cuomo also made big news today in announcing that hair salons and barbers would be reopening in Phase 2, which, if the Southern Tier keeps its infection numbers low, could come in another 2 weeks.
Meanwhile, Garnar announced that broad testing at the county-run Willow Point Nursing Center has discovered 4 additional cases of the coronavirus.
“We own the nursing home. It’s owned by the community. And it’s something that we care greatly about. We care greatly about the residents there, and we’re doing absolutely everything we can to make sure that we prevent the spread there as much as possible and protect the lives of our residents there,” says Garnar.
The new positives bring the total number of residents with COVID-19 in Willow Point to 5 plus the medical provider who tested positive earlier this week.
Garnar says the residents did not exhibit symptoms and have been isolated in negative pressure rooms.
He expects the remainder of the 274 residents to be tested by the end of today.
As a result, Willow Point was added to the county’s list of hotspots.
At the same time, both Vestal Park and the United Methodist Homes Hilltop Campus have been removed from the hotspot list.