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Emily Davenport

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NY’s Coronavirus Clusters Still Have Lower Infection Rates Than Some States, Cuomo Says

Blood sample tube positive with COVID-19 or novel coronavirus 2019 found in Wuhan, China

Though New York is dealing with clusters of new cases of COVID-19, Governor Andrew Cuomo said that the state is still having more success in keeping the numbers down compared to other states in the country.

On Oct. 11, New York State had a 1.05% COVID-19 infection rate, excluding the Red Zones, with New York City having a 1.1% infection rate specifically. 878 New Yorkers were hospitalized for COVID-19, with 185 in the ICU and 86 intubated. A total of 12 New Yorkers died of COVID-19 that day.

New York’s Red Zones have an infection rate of 3.7%. Cuomo said that even though this might be high compared to other areas in New York, these microclusters still have lower infection rates than some states, particularly in states that have been following President Trump’s stance on COVID-19.

“The president has been promoting politics of denial since day 1, even after he had COVID. And it’s a disgusting denial when you see the number of lives lost,” said Cuomo. “There are some states that followed the politics of denial and turned it into science fiction, saying ff you test less, you will find fewer cases, and if you find fewer cases, you have less of a problem. That’s almost a laughable concept, but you are now seeing it in the numbers.”

A chart sent to reporters outlined states with high populations as well as their testing and COVID positivity rates. In the past 7 days, New York performed over 800,00 tests and had a 1.17% positivity rate. Meanwhile, states like Florida and Texas, where their testing rates have significantly decreased, are reaching infection rates of 11.7% and 7.6%, respectively.

“How can your testing numbers be going down? Our testing numbers are going up bc this was about ramping up testing, getting state labs sophisticated on how to do testing,” said Cuomo. “In the beginning, we could only do 500 per day. Now we do 120,000 per day. You ramp up. You would have to purposely ramp down the number of tests. Why would you do that?”

Cuomo said that part of the problem with these states is that they aren’t collecting data that is accurate because they aren’t testing as much. When compared to New York, Cuomo says that New York is having the exact opposite happening — even with more testing, New York has been staying within a 1% infection rate.

Even with the microclusters of COVID-19 cases throughout New York, such as the ones in Brooklyn and Queens, those areas are still pulling in lower infection rates than some of these other states.

“Our strategy is to identify these microclusters — we do more testing that any other state so we have more data,” said Cuomo. “We are obsessive of getting incoming case numbers from hospitals. You map those cases and find the greatest predominance of cases. That is a microcluster. It’s not a nationwide hotspot, it’s a nationwide cool spot compared to other states. It’s because we are this diligent that we keep the numbers down.”

Cuomo told reporters he believes that the country could be dealing with COVID-19 outbreaks for a year.

“It’s realistic to say at least for a year you will be dealing with COVID, and that might be an optimistic scenario,” said Cuomo. “You will still have COVID outbreaks for a year, you’ll still be needing to manage COVID, and how you do it is very important because that is the difference between a cluster and community spread.”

For more coronavirus coverage, visit longislandpress.com/coronavirus

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Booze-Infused Ice Cream OK’d in NY

Alcohol-infused ice cream is officially on the menu.

On Aug. 3, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a bill that authorizes the manufacturing and sale of ice cream and other frozen desserts made with liquor in New York State. The legislation aims to help New York’s dairy farmers, liquor and craft beverage producers, dairy processors and manufacturers, food retailers, and restaurants meet the increasing consumer demand for these new products.

“The craft beverage industry has experienced explosive growth in New York and with that comes a responsibility to advance regulations that help ensure long-term viability, protect consumers and provide farmers with opportunities to increase their business,” the governor said. “This legislation will further grow a burgeoning industry and boost small businesses while helping to put them on a path of sustained growth that empowers both producers and consumers.”

New York now ranks in the top five in the U.S. for its number of craft beverage producers in every category and ranks first in the country for the number of hard cider producers, second in craft breweries and distilleries, and fourth in the country for the total number of wineries. Since the governor’s first Wine, Beer and Spirits Summit, the number of farm-based licenses has increased by over 190 percent, from 282 in October 2012 to 823 today.  

“This bill expands on the successful addition of wine, beer, and cider to certain specialty ice creams,” Assemblymember Donna Lupardo (D-Broome County) said. “Any time we can allow our dairy farmers and producers to add a product that’s popular with consumers, it’s good for business and it’s good for tourism. Our distilleries are especially enthusiastic about the potential for NY spirits in NY ice cream.”

This story first appeared on amNewYork.com

For more food and drink coverage, visit longislandpress.com/category/food-drink

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NY Census Council Aims To Ensure All New Yorkers Get Counted

Sample U.S. 2020 Census Form for population count

On Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the addition of a new council that will ensure that every New Yorker gets counted in the upcoming 2020 census.

The council, which will be co-chaired by Martin Luther King III, Lucy Liu and Lin-Manuel Miranda, plans to act as the state’s coordinating arm to achieve a complete census count by using the information learned from the state’s Complete Count Commission and support from state, local and foundation funding resources. Gov. Cuomo also wants to propose an additional $10 million in this year’s budget to ensure a fair and complete count, which would bring the state’s financial support for the census to $70 million.

“As this federal administration continues to disenfranchise immigrant communities and use every means possible to stop them from filling out this year’s Census questionnaire, we are taking aggressive actions to ensure every single New Yorker is counted,” Governor Cuomo said. “This new council will lead the charge coordinating stakeholders so we can reach our most difficult to count communities and help ensure New York is accurately represented and gets the federal funding we need and deserve.”

To make sure that every person gets counted, the council plans on holding multiple press conferences to engage not just local officials, but also advocates, community-based organizations, and community leaders so they can work together to coordinate efforts, deploy available resources and oversee outreach efforts in hard-to-reach communities to make sure the count actually happens.

“Being counted in the Census may well be second only to voting when it comes to citizen action in the Democrat process,” said Martin Luther King III. “Unfortunately, people of color are the ones most often undercounted, which leads to negative consequences for their communities. I am proud to work with Governor Cuomo to ensure every New Yorker, even those that are hardest to reach, is counted in the 2020 Census.”

For the full version of this story, visit qns.com

London Jewelers Hosts 2018 Long Island Power Women Honorees for a Meet and Greet

London Jewelers, the Platinum Sponsor of the Long Island Power Women in Business event, hosted this year’s honorees at an exclusive meet-and-greet pre-event cocktail reception on Thursday, April 26.

The room, full of dynamic women from various industries, learned about the history of Chanel, while surrounded by the beauty and luxury.

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A special thank you to Sherry Mesh, Manager of London Jewelers, and Mario Gomez, Brand Ambassador for Chanel Fine Jewelry, for their gracious hospitality.

This year’s Long Island Power Women in Business will be feted on Wednesday, May 9 from 6 to 9 pm at Leonard’s Palazzo, 555 Northern Boulevard in Great Neck. To learn more, or for tickets, call 718-224-5863, ext 227 or go to schnepscommunicationsevents.com

Click here for photos of the event. Photos by Corazon Aguirre

Celebrate International Food During The World’s Fare

Destination Dumpling will be one of many vendors that will be at The World's Fare on April 28 and 29.

There’s still time to reserve your spot to participate in The World’s Fare, a celebration of the diversity of the food industry right here in the “World’s Borough.”

The World’s Fare will be coming to Citi Field in Flushing on April 28 and 29 from noon to 8 p.m. and will re-imagine the iconic 1964-65 World’s Fair by offering food, drink, art and music from over 100 countries.

Tickets are available starting $19 for all-day general admission. Head over to theworldsfare.nyc to see all ticketing options for the event.

“We are thrilled to bring The World’s Fare — a celebration of diversity through cuisine, drink, art, music and more to Queens — the most ethnically diverse place on the planet! Queens couldn’t be a better place to host this incredible event,” said Elizabeth Aloni, co-founder of The World’s Fare.

The World’s Fare will serve up cuisine from across the globe that can be found right in the five boroughs, highlighting the diversity of New York City. The incredible restaurants and vendors were carefully curated by a team of culinary experts, led by journalist and culinary historian Jessica Harris, Singaporean food expert KF Seetoh and renowned Danish chef Claus Meyer, resulting in fare from over 100 chefs, restaurants and street vendors.

As you work your way around the many different cuisines, the hardest decision will be figuring out where you’d like to start. As a celebration of the diversity of the New York City’s food scene, you have your choice of international cuisine, including Vietnamese fare from Falansai, Peruvian delicacies from Don Ceviche and Latin American street food from Empanada Papa, just to name a few.

For those with a sweet tooth, The World’s Fare has vendors offering desserts, including fried ice cream from Moon Dawg Sundaes, pastries from Orwashers, Mexican sweets from La Newyorkina and much more!

Once you eat your way around the world, you’re going to need something to wash it down. For $49, your ticket will include a tasting period at The World’s Fare’s International Beer Garden, which offers a collection of 80 brews from 45 breweries, ranging from international beers such as Guinness, Heineken and Modelo to local brews from Brooklyn Brewery and Coney Island Brewing Company.

Each International Beer Garden ticket allows the ticket holder to a two-hour tasting period with unlimited tastings. For a complete list of brews offered at the garden, visit theworldsfare.nyc.

All day long, not only will The World’s Fare offer incredible food, it will host an art installation that will pay homage to the original World’s Fair, which was held in Flushing Meadows Corona Park. Cody Wells, C3Brix lego master and Queens resident, will build a Lego model of the Unisphere, which will stand tall all weekend long.

The event will also include calligraphy and emoji drawings from Japanese ink artist Taisan Tanaka, live cultural music and dancers, and a 4-dimensional art installation that looks like you could walk right into it.

The event will also include a visit from Yama, the largest sumo wrestler in the northern hemisphere and his sparring partner. Guests will be able to watch a live sumo wrestling demonstration from the two-time 600-pound sumo wrestling champion and also attend a meet-and-greet with Yama.

For more information and to purchase your tickets for The World’s Fare, visit theworldsfare.nyc.

Long Island Duo Arrested for Killing NYC Rapper

Lionel Pickens, aka Chinx

Two Long Island men have been indicted for the murder of a 31-year-old rapper during a drive-by shooting in the victim’s hometown of Queens two years ago, New York City authorities said.

Jamar Hill, 26, of Valley Stream, and 32-year-old Quincy Homere of Baldwin were charged Thursday with one count each of second-degree murder, second-degree attempted murder, first-degree assault and two counts of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon.

“In another example of the mindless gun violence plaguing our country, a young, up-and coming musician had his life and career dramatically cut short by a burst of senseless shooting that also wounded an acquaintance,” Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown said. “Such violence has no place in a civilized society.”

Prosecutors said the duo shot Lionel Pickens of Ozone Park, also known as Chinx, as the suspects followed Pickens from Brooklyn to Queens after Pickens performed at a nightclub at 4:04 a.m. on May 17, 2015.

Hills and Homere fired a weapon at Pickens’ Porsche near Main Street and Queens Boulevard, striking Pickens and his passenger, 27-year-old Antar Alziadi, multiple times, authorities said.

Officers from the 107th Precinct and EMS units responded to the scene. Both men were rushed to Jamaica hospital, where Pickens was pronounced dead and Alziadi was treated for his injuries.

If convicted, Hills and Homere face up to 25 years to life in prison.