The coronavirus pandemic continues to interrupt daily life as elected officials scramble to mobilize for the day normalcy returns.
New numbers in Thursday: 30 Albany County residents have now died of COVID-19. County Executive Dan McCoy says there are 739 confirmed cases and 401 recoveries.
"We have 772 people under mandatory quarantine, that's up 59 from yesterday, and we have 54 people under precautionary, that's up 13 from yesterday."
McCoy says 1,825 people have completed quarantine, with 401 having tested positive and recovered.
County Health Commissioner Dr. Elizabeth Whalen says the county hospitalization rate stands at 4.19%, down from Wednesday’s rate of 4.62%.
"We have been watching the rate of positives over the past few weeks. I know I had mentioned that as the testing increased in Albany County we would be watching very carefully that number, which for a long time had been about 7 to 7.5% people that were tested were positive. It's inched up a bit but not much. We're about 9.8% people that are being positive. This means roughly 1 in 10 people that get tested for COVID in Albany County are testing positive."
Whalen is looking forward the results of random antibody tests the state has been conducting at supermarkets.
Fifteen Schenectady County residents have died of COVID-19. The county has 373 positive cases and 198 recoveries.
With warmer weather ahead, the business community is hopeful that as the disease curve continues to trend downward, re-opening will begin to occur.
Democratic state Assemblymembers Pat Fahy and John McDonald held a virtual town hall Thursday morning over the Zoom video app to discuss the impact of the pandemic on the Capital Region's nonprofits.
Bill Piskutz from the Palace Theater says even if restrictions are eased, arts and entertainment venues are without guidance...
"There's nothing out there that says that, you know, make sure that every guest that comes in has their temperature taken or they're wearing a mask." Piskutz said other considerations would consider seating arrangements, assuming people would want to venture into a building where they'd be sharing space with others. How many tickets could be sold for a show? Then there's another component of the revenue stream:
"If everyone is supposed to wear a mask inside these venues, how do they consume the confections? How do you eat popcorn at a movie? And that is our roots. We are a 1931 movie theatre, we have a classic movie series that we do, so something as simple as selling popcorn at that, which, believe it or not creates quite a bit of revenue for organizations like ours."
With this and many other questions unanswered, Fahy and McDonald vowed to find relief. Meeting attendance was capped at 100, so they say they'll secure additional bandwidth to open the virtual town meetings to more people. They plan to conduct them weekly through the summer.