Vermont U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders suspended his second bid for the White House this morning. The presidential candidates have been forced to campaign online in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, but that is not the reason Sanders gave for giving up his run for the Democratic nomination.
Monday evening was the first meeting of the new city council elected by Burlington, Vermont residents on Town Meeting Day in March. The new council met electronically to elect a new council president, conduct COVID-19 related business and hear Mayor Miro Weinberger’s annual State of the City address.
The state of Vermont, the Vermont National Guard and the University of Vermont Medical Center have been collaborating to set up “surge sites” to handle any potential patient overloads from the coronavirus pandemic. One of the surge facilities is at the Patrick Gymnasium on the UVM campus. Officials provided a tour of the operation Tuesday morning in advance of any patient transfers.
Governor Phil Scott says while there are glimmers of hope Vermonters need to prepare for what could be a bleak time over the next few weeks as the state continues efforts to control the outbreak of COVID-19.
Among the misconceptions about the coronavirus is it only affects older people. But it can infect people of all ages. 33-year-old Plattsburgh resident Jacob Avery is cautioning people to take the warnings of health officials more seriously. He and his partner are at home in quarantine recovering from COVID-19. Avery, who is seeking a seat on the Plattsburgh Common Council, tells WAMC North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley he doesn’t know how he contracted the virus even though he tried to meticulously follow health advisories.
Vermont Governor Phil Scott and members of his administration provided the latest update on the state’s response to the coronavirus pandemic on Friday morning. Their focus was on the effectiveness of the public use of masks and the need to maintain social distancing in order to stem the spread of the disease.
On Sunday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a travel advisory recommending residents of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut refrain from non-essential domestic travel for two weeks because of the high transmission of the coronavirus in the area. Days later, Spirit Airlines said it was suspending all flights to and from those states including airports at Niagara Falls and Plattsburgh. Officials in New York’s North Country say the temporary loss of flights is not a surprise.
Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger is providing daily updates on how the city, nonprofits and agencies in Vermont’s largest city are responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. His latest updates have focused on aid to low-income residents and small business.
The Vermont Senate met at the Statehouse in Montpelier Tuesday and passed a series of measures to assure state operations can continue during the coronavirus pandemic. The chamber also passed measures to increase aid to Vermonters who need additional help.
New York Congresswoman Elise Stefanik wants the federal government to protect the businesses and workers in her district as debate continues over a pandemic rescue bill in the Senate. The 21st District Republican also wants rural medical facilities assured that they will receive the necessary equipment to keep their personnel safe as the coronavirus spreads from urban areas to her rural district.
Burlington, Vermont officials held a number of meetings on Monday to update the public on the coronavirus outbreak. The regular meeting of the City Council was attended virtually to comply with social distancing recommendations.
This week, Vermont Governor Phil Scott directed all childcare centers in the state to cease normal operations. But he also ordered schools and “encouraged” childcare facilities to provide services to essential personnel during the coronavirus outbreak. On Wednesday the governor outlined details regarding his directive affecting child care centers and schools.
It’s an uncertain time after New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that all bars and restaurants must close except for takeout business for the duration of the coronavirus crisis. In northern New York, Plattsburgh’s bars and restaurants are now finding new ways to do business.
President Trump announced via Twitter Wednesday morning that the U.S.-Canada border will be closed to all except essential travel. While the move was not unexpected by border interests in northern New York, they want clarification regarding some provisions.