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Molinaro Holds Latest COVID-19 Virtual Town Hall Forum

Dutchess County, NY sent this bulletin at 08/26/2020 05:15 PM EDT

Poughkeepsie, NY … Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro today hosted his weekly virtual Town Hall Forum this afternoon, providing residents with the latest local updates regarding the COVID-19 pandemic and other county topics, as well as answering questions during the online Facebook LIVE forum.

Today’s forum and previous events are available on the Dutchess County Government YouTube page.

Among the highlight of today’s conversation:

• County Executive Molinaro updated residents on the most current data posted on the Dutchess County COVID-19 Community Impact Dashboard:

4,790 total confirmed cases
123,616 tests completed
264 active cases
10 hospitalizations
153 deaths
4,373 recoveries
1% infection rate

• While Dutchess County’s COVID-19 infection rate remains low, County Executive Molinaro pushed for continued vigilance to remain healthy and safe. As reopenings continue and people are increasing their interactions, it is important to continue to observe social distancing, stay diligent personal hygiene, including hand washing, and keep wearing face coverings when unable to properly social distance outside of your home.

• Effective Monday, Aug. 24th, state guidelines allow gyms and fitness studios to reopen. These businesses must maintain no more than 33 percent capacity; all employees and patrons must wear masks or face coverings at all times, complete and pass a health screening and sign in upon entering the facility; patrons and employees must remain socially distant, at least 6 feet apart; and facilities must ensure individuals do not share equipment without cleaning and disinfection between uses. Dutchess County has assembled a response team to conduct the required inspections of gyms and fitness studios within two weeks of reopening.

• Earlier this week, the governor updated the list of states from which travelers must quarantine for 14 days, removing Alaska, Arizona, Delaware, Maryland and Montana from the travel quarantine list. Guam is now among the 31 states and territories on New York’s travel quarantine list.

• Also this week, the governor announced fall school sports could begin as early as September 21st. Lower-risk sports, including soccer, field hockey, cross country, tennis and swimming, can practice and play/compete as of September 21st. Higher-risk sports, including football, volleyball, wrestling, hockey and others, may begin practicing on September 21st, but not compete in games until a later date or December 31st. The New York State Public High School Athletic Association is expected to release more specific guidance/direction on Thursday, August 27th.

• Dutchess County Department of Behavioral & Community Health continues to work closely with school districts to provide guidance and answer questions as local districts make their final decisions regarding reopening, including guidance about testing availability, school nurse virtual training and more. Many school districts have opted to begin the school year remotely and transition to hybrid options after a few weeks; visit your local school district’s website for specific plans.

• To bolster capacity to continue to fight COVID-19, Dutchess County has received a New York State Department of Health grant to hire five Public Health Advisors on a temporary basis. For job description and application information, visit

County Executive Molinaro’s next virtual discussion will take place on Wednesday, September 2nd and will be broadcast live on the County’s Facebook page. As with the County Executive’s previous 30+ virtual forums, American Sign Language interpreters will translate the live conversation on Facebook.