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Hudson Valley News

Planned Parenthood of Greater New York President & CEO Laura McQuade
Courtesy of PPGNY/Laura McQuade

Planned Parenthood of Greater New York, like other health services organizations, responded to the COVID-19 pandemic by relying more on telehealth. Planned Parenthood was deemed an essential service and has remained open throughout for in-person visits. President and CEO Laura McQuade spoke with WAMC’s Hudson Valley Bureau Chief Allison Dunne about the pandemic, abortion access and more, including protests outside its centers. The interview was recorded before protests over the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

A vote in New York on whether to adopt recommended maximum contaminant levels in drinking water for three chemicals has been postponed a second time because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Still, clean water advocates say they are disappointed with another delay.

A protest is planned in Poughkeepsie Tuesday afternoon in the aftermath of the George Floyd death.

Following the death of George Floyd in police custody last week in Minneapolis, the Westchester County executive is forming a working group to review county police academy polices.

NYS Senator James Skoufis
Courtes of the Office of NYS Senator James Skoufis

In one of its first major moves since the coronavirus pandemic took hold, the New York state legislature last week passed a package of COVID-19-related bills. Democratic State Senator James Skoufis co-sponsored many of the bills that range from education needs to price gouging penalties. Skoufis, who chairs the Committee on Investigations and Government Operations, spoke with WAMC’s Hudson Valley Bureau Chief Allison Dunne about some of the measures along with whether his committee will be looking into Governor Andrew Cuomo’s actions regarding nursing homes during the pandemic.

Ulster Performing Arts Center (UPAC), Kingston, NY
Courtesy of Timothy Lee

The City of Kingston in Ulster County, New York is launching a cultural planning project. The city’s mayor says a master plan will help preserve cultural assets and help artists facing challenges in this economic landscape.

SUNY Purchase Has A New President

May 30, 2020
Dr. Milagros “Milly” Peña, the sixth president of Purchase College.
Courtesy of SUNY Purchase

The State University of New York Board of Trustees voted unanimously Friday to appoint the next president of SUNY Purchase in Westchester County.

NYS Says Five More Communities Are Climate Smart

May 30, 2020

The New York state Department of Environmental Conservation has announced the latest round of certified climate smart communities. Two of the five are in the Hudson Valley.

New York state Senate Democrats and others are calling on Governor Andrew Cuomo to follow New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy’s lead when it comes to graduations. Murphy said Tuesday that graduations can take place beginning July 6 in person, outdoors and adhering to social distancing guidelines.

Courtesy of Rockland County government

Rockland County, New York has a new program to help small businesses and nonprofits reopen safely emerging from the COVID-19 crisis.

Courtesy of the New York National Guard

The Trump Administration has reversed course and extended authorization of National Guard service. This comes following pushes from many elected officials, including two New York congressmen.

NYS Comptroller Tom DiNapoli in Dutchess County, Dec. 2017, to discuss NY ABLE program
WAMC, Allison Dunne

The Dutchess County Executive and New York state Comptroller hosted a Facebook live discussion Thursday afternoon on the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic impact. They discussed the fiscal condition of both the county and New York, and what financial recovery might look like.

MTA Metro-North Railroad President Catherine Rinaldi
Courtesy of MTA Metro-North Railroad

With the beginning of Phase One reopening in the Mid-Hudson Valley Tuesday, Metro-North began adding trains to its three lines east of the Hudson. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Metro-North instituted an Essential Service Plan, with hourly service seven days a week. Metro-North President Catherine Rinaldi tells WAMC’s Hudson Valley Bureau Chief Allison Dunne that the railroad is now upping train capacity by 26 percent to meet expected increased demand.

Dr. James Halpern
Courtesy of SUNY New Paltz

The American Red Cross is operating a virtual Family Assistance Center in New York to help those who have lost loved ones to COVID-19. WAMC’s Hudson Valley Bureau Chief Allison Dunne spoke with Dr. James Halpern, who serves on the Board of Directors of the Hudson Valley Chapter of the Red Cross. Now retired, he was the founding director of the Institute for Disaster Mental Health at SUNY New Paltz.

Dutchess Will Roll Out Memorial Day Convoy

May 24, 2020
Courtesy of Dutchess County government

Most traditional Memorial Day celebrations have been cancelled or are not open to the public because of the COVID-19 pandemic. In New York’s Hudson Valley, Dutchess County has organized a vehicle convoy to recognize fallen heroes.


A New York state senator is renewing his call to establish a three-digit suicide hotline number.

New York Army National Guard Lt. Col. Marc Lindemann, left, commander of the 1st Battalion, 258th Field Artillery, 27th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, conducts a promotion ceremony advancing Pfc. Ervin Chance to the rank of specialist
Photo courtesy of Command Sgt. Major Russel Gallo

Two New York Congressmen want to ensure National Guard service members receive benefits, and are asking President Trump to extend deployment authorization.

Sullivan County Legislature Chairman Robert Doherty, left, and District Attorney Meagan Galligan display just a few of the items they donated on May 18 to the Shepherd’s Pantry at the White Lake Reformed Presbyterian Church
Courtesy of Sullivan County government

Sullivan County officials are encouraging residents to donate food and funds as the COVID-19 pandemic leaves many struggling to meet basic needs.

Croton Point Park Beach
Courtesy of the Village of Croton-on-Hudson

Two Westchester County-owned beaches will open to residents only for Memorial Day weekend.

NY Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney (bottom right); Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro (bottom left); Westchester County Executive George Latimer (upper left); Orange County Executive Steve Neuhaus (upper right)
Courtesy of the Office of Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney

Three Hudson Valley county executives joined New York Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney Thursday to urge Congress to deliver a coronavirus relief package that includes direct state and local funding. County leaders say they’re looking at steep revenue losses and layoffs unless the federal government throws them a lifeline.

Westchester County Airport
Courtesy of Westchester County government

A refurbished runway at the Westchester County Airport opened Thursday morning. The main runway was closed at the end of April for repaving. The project was moved up from the fall given little flight activity during the COVID-19 pandemic. WAMC’s Hudson Valley Bureau Chief Allison Dunne has more on the coronavirus response in Westchester and Dutchess.

A Sign By The Hudson River Lights Up Again

May 21, 2020
Yonkers City PIer sign
Courtesy of Joe Panella/City of Yonkers

A waterfront sign at an historic pier in the lower Hudson Valley has gotten a facelift.

Ulster County Exec Unveils Housing Initiatives

May 19, 2020
Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan delivers COVID-19 update May 19, 2020
Courtesy of the Office of Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan

The Ulster County executive delivered a COVID-19 update Tuesday, announcing a series of initiatives to meet a growing need heightened by the pandemic — housing.

Sullivan County Manager Talks About COVID-19 Impacts

May 19, 2020
Sullivan County COVID-19 dashboard, May 19, 2020
Courtesy of Sullivan County government

Sullivan County, New York is part of the Mid-Hudson reopening plan. The region has not yet reached the seven metrics required by the state to begin Phase 1 of reopening. WAMC’s Hudson Valley Bureau Chief Allison Dunne spoke with the Sullivan County manager about how his county is faring during the COVID-19 pandemic, with a number of attractions temporarily closed as the summer season is upon us.

Congressman Antonio Delgado on the House Floor speaking about rural broadband in October 2019
Courtesy of the Office of Congressman Antonio Delgado

A New York congressman has introduced legislation to boost funding for rural public transportation.

NYS Considers Whether To Open Summer Camps

May 18, 2020
YMCA summer camp
By Becket Chimney Corners YMCA - BCCYMCA private server, CC BY-SA 3.0,

As portions of New York begin the first of a four-phase reopening plan, the question of whether the state will allow summer camps to open remains. Initially a concern about large gatherings, the decision has been complicated by a number of cases where children are becoming ill with a rare inflammatory syndrome believed to be related to COVID-19.

Although states and the federal government are getting most of the attention — and criticism — during the coronavirus response, local leaders are facing tough decisions by the day. The Benjamin Center for Public Policy Initiatives at SUNY New Paltz has published a report on findings from a survey of local leaders on COVID-19. WAMC’s Hudson Valley Bureau Chief Allison Dunne spoke with Benjamin Center Director KT Tobin.

NYS Senator Pete Harckham on the phone with the governor's office coordinating local assistance, March 23, 2020
Courtesy of the NYS Senator Pete Harckham's office

A New York state senator from the Hudson Valley says the House coronavirus aid package fails to address the pandemic’s behavioral health crisis.

Petition Urges NYS To Fix Unemployment System

May 16, 2020
Courtesy of NYS Senator Sue Serino

With New York’s backlog of claims from the COVID-19 pandemic, a state senator from the Hudson Valley has joined six of her Republican colleagues in launching a petition urging New York to fix its unemployment system.

NYC DEP Reaches Another Delaware Aqueduct Milestone

May 15, 2020
NYC DEP staff say goodbye to the final steel liner before it was lowered into the Delaware Aqueduct Bypass Tunnel, May 12, 2020.
Courtesy of the New York City Department of Environmental Protection

The New York City Department of Environmental Protection has reached another milestone in its $1 billion project to repair the longest tunnel in the world.