Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente has tested positive for COVID-19.

Picente posted a Facebook LIVE video on the Oneida County Government page shortly before 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday, saying he'd just been notified of the positive result.

''I can't tell you how protective I've been and how cautious I've been...My office, myself, even my wife. I've been getting tested twice a week since May of last year. We isolate when we're not in this office. Obviously, in the office we keep our distance, wear masks. It's a small group of people here in the office...''

Picente went on to say recent tests conducted on staff in the County Executive's office have all recently tested negative for the virus, and at this time, all were feeling fine. In light of his test, he indicated they would all be tested again.

On a personal note, the CE said he'd recently taken extra care to protect himself from the virus, spending the holidays with his wife home alone, adding that they even have groceries delivered to their home to further reduce potential exposure.

As of Tuesday afternoon, Picente 'felt fine' and was symptom free, he said.

''It's a can happen even to those of us who are the most cautious and the most protective of ourselves, our family and our friends.,'' Picente said, adding that he was recording his message to residents in his office, and would be immediately leaving the county office building to quarantine at the conclusion of his message.

A regularly scheduled LIVE coronavirus briefing on the county Facebook page set for 3:00 p.m. Tuesday was promptly canceled, but Picente said he planned to host a LIVE briefing from his home on Wednesday.

''We will keep you informed as we go forward as to what is happening with the vaccinations, we have a plan in place that we want to talk more about tomorrow so we can get the vaccines out to people in this community who desperately need them.

''Again, it an happen at anytime to anyone. Again, my thoughts and prayers go to all who've dealt with this, continue to deal with this and of course all of those who've lost their lives,'' Picente said.


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