Tompkins County announces changes in programs and services due to reduced staff

Local News

ITHACA, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) -– Tompkins County is temporarily cutting staff due to mandates put forth by Governor Andrew Cuomo.

Despite these reductions, the county is committed to maintaining critical services to the community and its residents.

“As we face the challenges of COVID-19, Tompkins County is committed to maintaining essential services for the community while, at the same time, maintaining the health and safety of the workforce.”  said Tompkins County Administrator Jason Molino.

This reduction in the county’s workforce reporting for onsite work is a precautionary measure to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Changes to county related programs and services are as follows, and will be updated as needed:

Tompkins County Office for the Aging:

  • All business will be conducted by phone. If you have an appointment or need services from the Office for the Aging, please call 607-274-5482. 
  • We encourage visitors to call and schedule an appointment by phone and not to walk in unless absolutely necessary.  In the case that visitors do come to the office they will be greeted and asked to make an appointment.
  • The Personal Emergency Response program medical monitoring will continue as usual and service inquiries will be addressed and prioritized on the phone.

Tompkins County Board of Elections:

  • All Village elections originally scheduled for March 18th have been rescheduled to April 28th

Tompkins County Legislature:

  • Legislature meetings as well as Committee meetings will be closed to in-person attendance by members of the public.  Legislators and staff can elect to participate remotely.  The public can listen in on the Legislature meetings by calling 646-558-8656 ID# 587 980 1385 and submit comments via email at
  • All meetings of advisory boards, committees, and commissions will be suspended through the end of March

Tompkins County District Attorney:

  • Will remain open during normal business hours with limited staffing
  • Court system is open for essential matters only

Tompkins County Finance Department:

Tompkins County Health Department:

  • The following programs have been suspended:
    • MOMS
    • SafeCare
    • Immunizations
    • Healthy Neighborhoods Program
    • Early Intervention
    • Preschool Special Education Services
    • WIC will take appointments via phone call at 607-274-6630 through March 31st.  WIC will continue to provide benefits remotely.
    • Environmental Health will have limited public contact; electronic and phone communication is encouraged.
  • The public is encouraged to call ahead with inquiries about services.

Tompkins County Mental Health Services:

  • Clinic and PROS Services:
  • Essential services will be provided over the phone. Crisis, medications, injections, payee, and intake services will be available by phone Monday-Friday 8:30-4:30.  Please call 607-274-6200 for information
  • Anyone that comes to the building will be asked a few questions pertaining to travel outside the country, if they have been exposed to someone known to be in quarantine or exposed to COVID-19, or if they have symptoms.  If they answer yes, they will be directed to seek the services of a medical provider and they will not be seen in the building.
  • Care Management:
  • Care Coordination will be available by telephone and offer the following:
  • Increased telephone communication to assess for immediate needs
  • Work with member’s providers in order to link/connect member’s to resources
  • Provide necessary supports during this time
  • Call the Care Management Unit at 607-274-6333

Department of Motor Vehicles:

  • Will remain open to the public from 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Department of Probation and Community Justice:

  • Probation remains open for normal business and reporting with the exceptions of:
    • Day reporting program is closed
    • Community Service/SWAP has been suspended until further notice

Tompkins County Sheriff’s Office

  • Administrative Offices, including the Civil and Records Division is closed
  • The following functions have been suspended:
  • Pistol permit transactions
    • Sheriff Identifications
    • Background Checks
    • Civil payments (can mail certified check or money order to the Sheriff’s Office)
    • Request for copies of reports – Please mail request with a copy of your government issued ID to the Sheriff’s Office.  In cover letter please include what records you are requesting, your mailing address, and a contact phone number
  • All inmate visitation is suspended
  • All group meetings are suspended for non-essential professional visitors

Tompkins County Department of Social Services:

  • All business will be conducted by phone for the near future. For those with an appointment or needing services from the Department of Social Services, please contact your assigned worker or call 607-274-5345  
  • TCDSS will be screening all visitors to the building.  People will be asked a few questions pertaining to travel outside the country, if they have been exposed to someone known to be in quarantine or exposed to COVID-19, or if they have symptoms. If people respond yes, they will be directed to seek advice from a medical provider, and they will not be seen in the building

Tompkins Workforce NY:

  • Closed to the public. 
  • Unemployment Insurance Claims: The State is working to alleviate the significant pressure the influx of unemployment claims has created on the workforce system.  Therefore, the New York State Department of Labor has just released a new schedule for individuals filing new Unemployment Insurance Claim by phone or web.  As a reminder the 7-day waiting period has been waived
  • The day you file is based on the first letter of your last name and filing later in the week will not delay payments or affect the date of your claim.  Claims are effective on the Monday of the week of filing:
  • A-F: Monday
  • G-N: Tuesday
  • O-Z: Wednesday
  • If you missed a filing day, claim on Thursday or Friday

Tompkins County Department of Veterans Services

  • No walk-ins.  Please call for an appointment, 607-274-5920

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