Coronavirus Updates: Orange County, NY closes schools in Kiryas Joel, Palm Tree

COVID-19 Live Updates, News and Information
NEW YORK (WABC) -- Health Commissioner Dr. Irina Gelman ordered all public, private and charter schools serving students in the Village of Kiryas Joel and Town of Palm Tree to close effective immediately.

Citing a three-day COVID-19 positivity rate of 27.6%, the Orange County, NY Health Commissioner ordered all public, private, and charter schools serving students in the Village of Kiryas Joel and Town of Palm Tree closed effective immediately.

Meanwhile, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Tuesday new rules to help fight COVID clusters, including closing nonessential businesses in the main and surrounding areas of a hot spot.

Coronavirus clusters have impacted several parts of New York City, including several neighborhoods in Queens and Brooklyn.

Cuomo also unveiled the Cluster Action Initiative to help put a stop to the spread.

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Here are more of today's headlines:



COVID-19 survivors weigh in on President Trump's actions
In the wake of President Donald Trump's bout with COVID-19 and his controversial comments and actions upon his release and return to the White House, coronavirus survivors and family members of those who have died are offering a unique perspective on the situation

Birx visits New Jersey college; Fauci responds to Trump's COVID comments
With President Donald Trump returning to the White House and insisting the public to "not be afraid of COVID," Dr. Deborah Birx, head of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, visited Rowan University in New Jersey to emphasize that the steps recommended by public health officials can help bring down cases.

Murphy condemns Trump fundraiser; NJ considers restrictions
Governor Phil Murphy is also now considering targeted restrictions similar to what we are seeing in New York City after some communities in Monmouth and Ocean Counties are seeing a spike in cases. In Ocean County, the infection rate in 7.2. This as the governor comdemed the president's trip to Bedminster and called it the "wrong decision at every level." President Donald Trump's fundraiser at his Bedminster golf club hours before he announced he had contracted the coronavirus was wrong and "put lives at risk," Governor Murphy said. The state is trying to keep tabs on the 206 attendees and 19 workers in an effort to thwart a potential outbreak stemming from the large gathering last Thursday, which included an indoor roundtable with the president that one attendee said lasted 45 minutes or more, he said.

Facebook removes President Trump's post falsely saying flu is more lethal than COVID-19
President Donald Trump's doctors said he is "not out of the woods yet" even though he was released from Walter Reed after 3 days of COVID-19 treatment. Facebook on Tuesday removed a post from President Trump in which he falsely claimed that COVID-19 is less deadly than the seasonal flu. Facebook spokesperson Andy Stone confirmed the company removed the post for breaking its rules on COVID-19 misinformation. President Trump has, by his own admission, played down the threat of COVID-19. Now, while battling his own bout of the disease, he has continued to dishonestly downplay the severity of the virus.

Trump doctor says president has 'no symptoms'
President Donald Trump's physician says the president is experiencing "no symptoms" of COVID-19 after returning home from the hospital Monday night. His physician, Navy Cmdr. Sean Conley, says in a new memo released by the White House that the president's medical team met with him in the residence Tuesday morning. He says that Trump had a "restful first night at home" and that his vital signs remain stable, including his blood oxygen level.
White House rejects updated FDA guidelines on coronavirus vaccine approval

The White House has blocked new Food and Drug Administration guidelines on bringing potential vaccines for COVID-19 to market that would almost certainly have prevented their introduction before the Nov. 3 election. At issue was the FDA's planned instruction that vaccine developers follow patients enrolled in their trials for at least two months to rule out safety issues before seeking emergency approval from the agency. A senior administration confirmed the move Monday evening, saying the White House believed there was "no clinical or medical reason" for the additional requirement.

Stimulus check update: IRS extends deadline to register for non-filers
Thousands of Americans still waiting for their stimulus checks now have an extended deadline to register for their payment. The IRS needs people who typically don't file a tax return to submit their information. The October 15 deadline was pushed back to November 21, giving people five extra weeks.

Man charged in death of 80-year-old man during dispute over mask in NY bar
A western New York man is charged with criminally negligent homicide after a dispute over wearing a face mask left an 80-year-old man dead, in what could be the first case of its kind in the nation. Donald Lewinski, 65, of West Seneca, was taken into custody Monday following an incident on September 26 at Pamp's Red Zone Bar and Grill on Southwestern Boulevard in West Seneca. According to Erie County District Attorney John Flynn, Lewinski got into a verbal confrontation with Rocco Sapienza -- another regular at the bar -- after Sapienza noticed Lewinski was not wearing a mask while bringing buckets of beer to a band playing outside.

NYC schools' COVID shutdowns part of Cuomo's bigger plan
A major push is underway to stop rising COVID-19 rates in several New York City neighborhoods. Governor Andrew Cuomo has ordered schools in those areas to close starting Tuesday. And he will meet today with religious leaders to discuss large-scale events that are drawing a lot of scrutiny. Nearly 100 schools are impacted by the shutdown as officials work to get control of the outbreaks. The mayor said on Tuesday that the closures would last at least two weeks, and possibly up to a month.

SUNY Cortland switches to remote learning
SUNY Cortland is shifting to remote learning after recording nearly 90 positive COVID-19 cases in one week. School officials say remote learning and a strict guideline of rules for students begins Wednesday and will last for at least two weeks. Some of the rules include prohibiting students from going home or traveling outside of the community. SUNY Cortland is just the latest of the SUNY campuses forced to switch to remote learning due to coronavirus.

CDC airborne transmission
The CDC says airborne transmission plays a role in spreading COVID-19 coronavirus. In a post on the CDC website, the agency emphasized "limited, uncommon circumstances" when the virus can spread among people more than 6 feet away or after an infected person left the room. They say "In these instances, transmission occurred in poorly ventilated and enclosed spaces that often involved activities that caused heavier breathing, like singing or exercise." The updated language does not change CDC recommendations on social distancing, mask wearing, avoiding large gatherings, and conducting any event or gathering outside as much as possible.

Stay informed with ABC7's NYC COVID-19 positivity rate tracker
As New York City public schools inch closer to reopening in-person learning, much of the success will rely heavily on schools keeping the COVID rate of infection in check. According to the city, public schools can only stay open if the COVID positivity rate stays below 3%. To stay informed, you can follow ABC7's NYC COVID-19 positivity rate tracker.


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The sense of doom grew, especially after March 1, when the first confirmed case arrived in Manhattan. Soon, there was a hotspot in New Rochelle, and small curfews and containment zones across the area offered a hint of a frightening future we still thought we could avoid.



RELATED: New York, New Jersey, Connecticut out-of-state travelers quarantine list

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