Melissa Hale-Spencer

BETHLEHEM — Sixty-four acres of forestland has been donated to the Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy by WestRock, the second largest American packaging company, based in Georgia.

Currently, any New Yorker who is 30 or older is eligible as well as people with a listed comorbidity or a listed essential job. Starting on Tuesday, any New Yorker age 16 or older will be eligible.

Venues can host up to 100 people indoors or up to 200 people outdoors. If all attendees present proof of completed vaccination or recent negative test results prior to entry, capacity can increase up to 150 people indoors or up to 500 people outdoors.

Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that the “production issues” at a Johnson & Johnson affiliate factory in Baltimore would not affect next week’s allocation to New York.

ALBANY COUNTY — Eligibility for COVID-19 vaccination opened up during the county’s 55th week of dealing with the pandemic as did more venues and activities — including college sports and nursing home visits.

A study released Tuesday by the United States Geological Survey found that the risk is low that scientists could pass the coronavirus to North American bats during winter research.

On Monday morning, Albany County officials pushed to have young adults eligible for COVID-19 vaccination as they are the most likely to be infected and spread the disease. On Monday afternoon, the governor announced that, beginning April 6, New Yorkers 16 and older will be eligible to get the vaccine. 

Albany County, like the rest of the state and nation, has seen an increase in infections following holiday gatherings — Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, and most notably the spike that started with Thanksgiving through the Christmas and New Year’s celebrations.

GUILDERLAND — Blake Spears, 40, of Westmere, was sentenced on Friday to 300 months in prison for sexually exploiting a child.

The announcement was made by Acting United States Attorney Antoinette T. Bacon and Thomas F. Relford, special agent in charge of the Albany Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

With vaccination ramping up, there is a nationwide slowdown in COVID-19 testing. “COVID-19 tests are available and we need people to continue to be tested as we strive to get more people vaccinated,” said Albany County Executive Daniel McCoy.

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