Melissa Hale-Spencer

Snow lines the limbs of the black locusts.

ALBANY COUNTY — Local leaders — all of them Democrats — were quick to condemn the violent breach of the United States Capitol on Wednesday, which disrupted the Congressional count of electoral votes. 

On Wednesday, the county’s health commissioner, Elizabeth Whalen, said her department is “working closely with schools to assist them with testing as we anticipate guidance on that will be forthcoming very quickly.”

Governor Andrew Cuomo said the highly transmissible strain from the United Kingdom, which was confirmed in a Saratoga County case on Monday, could be a “game changer” in the foot race to which he regularly alludes. The race pits vaccine implementation against the infection rate and hospital capacity.

“This U.K. strain changes the whole footrace because the U.K. strain, the rate of transmission goes way up, the rate of infection goes way up, and it’s no longer the race that we were running,” Cuomo said at Tuesday’s press conference. “Apparently, the U.K. strain can actually overtake the original COVID strain in a matter of weeks, that’s how quickly it can transmit.”

GUILDERLAND — On Tuesday evening, Superintendent Marie Wiles sent another email to “GCSD Families,” reporting eight new confirmed cases of COVID-19.

Between Dec. 29 and Jan 4, the Guilderland schools had 21 new cases of COVID-19, according to an email Superintendent Marie Wiles sent to GCSD Families on Monday evening.

Governor Andrew Cuomo said hospitals could be fined up to $100,000 for not using their vaccine allocations. “Going forward, they have to use the allocation within seven days; otherwise they can be removed from future distribution,” he said.

Governor Andrew Cuomo said, noting it was an opinion, not a fact, “My position has always been, if the children are safer in the school than they are on the streets of the community, then children should be in school.”

The governor said it is possible that the increased infection rate in the Capital Region and elsewhere across the country could be due to the UK variant of COVID-19 since it is more transmissible, which could lead not just to more infections but to more hospitalizations.

Guilderland High School

“We are a safe haven as well as a place of learning,” said Marie wiles, Guilderland’s superintendent of schools.

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