WEOS Finger Lakes Public Radio

Randy Gorbman

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's Director of News and Public Affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online. 

Randy has over 30 years of broadcast news experience, and was recently news director at WHAM-AM in Rochester. Randy has also been news director, writer, announcer, and producer at radio stations in several cities in New York and Connecticut, as well as working as an editor at the NBC Radio Network. He served as past president of the New York State Associated Press Broadcasters' Association, and is currently a member of its Board of Directors.

Randy has also taught journalism to local students, serving as adjunct instructor at SUNY Geneseo and Monroe Community College.

Randy received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication from the S. I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, and his Master's degree in Liberal Arts from SUNY Empire State College.

The Finger Lakes region is on target to enter Phase 4 of the reopening process on Friday. That’s what Bob Duffy, the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce president and CEO,  who also is an adviser on the region to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, said on Tuesday.

Duffy had been on a call with Cuomo administration officials earlier in the day, and he said the data looks good for entering the next phase on Friday.

However, Duffy said some businesses will not reopen right away when this region enters Phase 4.

The Rochester-Finger Lakes area and four other upstate New York regions will be entering Phase 3 of the state’s reopening plans on Friday, as part of the regulations set up by the state during the COVID-19 pandemic.

That announcement was made Thursday by Governor Andrew Cuomo at his daily briefing.  Cuomo said the data, which is reviewed by global experts, allows for Phase 3 to begin, and that phase primarily centers on restaurants and the personal care industry.

The Rochester-Finger Lakes area and four other regions in the state will have been in Phase 1 of the state’s reopening plan for two weeks as of Friday.

But some local business owners haven’t yet received the guidance they’re hoping for.

Phase 2 in the state’s plan for helping safely get various businesses and services back open during the pandemic was set up to start two weeks into Phase 1, assuming various metrics can be met on things like new hospitalizations, infection rates and other data.

Some area supermarket chains are temporarily limiting purchases of some meats due to supply and demand.

Wegmans has put a limit of 2 on ‘Family Pack 80% Ground Beef’ and ‘Family Pack Boneless Skinless Breast. The company issued a statement saying that the coronavirus pandemic is impacting meat supply across the country, but Wegmans does not expect to see a shortage of meat proteins available to its customers.

Experts with the board that helps regulate Lake Ontario sound cautiously optimistic that shoreline property owners won't face the kinds of flooding problems this year, that they’ve seen in recent years.

Water levels throughout the Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence River System are expected to peak below the record-high levels seen in 2019 and also in 2017.

New York state has canceled its Democratic presidential primary on June23, but some other contests are still going on.

Former Democratic presidential candidate and U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders announced earlier this month that he had suspended his campaign, but a lawyer for Sanders' campaign had asked the board not to cancel the New York primary.

While New York has canceled the June 23 Democratic presidential primary amid the concerns over the coronavirus pandemic, the state will still hold its congressional and state-level primaries on that date.

Governor Andrew Cuomo is tapping some local and state leaders to help parts of the state reopen businesses and other venues in a very measured way.

During his daily briefing Tuesday, which was held in Buffalo, Cuomo said he would call on his former Lt. Governor, Bob Duffy, who is now the President & CEO of the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce, to help coordinate public health and business activity in the Rochester-Finger Lakes region.

Both Wegmans and Tops are updating how their protocols are evolving to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Wegmans has implemented ‘employee wellness checks,’ where they are now requiring employees to go through a wellness check before the start of each shift. During the screening, employees are asked to answer a few questions and Wegmans is also in the process of rolling out temperature checks at all of their stores.

The Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council has named a new co-chair to replace former Monroe Community College President Anne Kress, who left for a position in Virginia earlier this year.

Denise Battles, president of SUNY Geneseo, will serve as co-chair, joining Bob Duffy, who is president and CEO of the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce.  The council works to grow the economy in a nine-county area in the Rochester-Finger Lakes region.

The Ontario County Public Health Department is reporting that county’s first deaths from COVID-19.

The agency says that both individuals were being cared for at the Ontario Center for Rehabilitation and Healthcare.

One of the individuals had tested positive for COVID-19 and was being monitored. He died suddenly in the hospital. Officials say the other individual was very ill and comfort care was being provided at the Ontario Center for Rehabilitation and Healthcare.