CHARLESTON, WV (WVNS)– Gov. Justice and state officials provide an update for media on COVID-19 preparedness and response plans. For more information about COVID-19 prevention and more, call the State’s toll-free hotline at 1-800-887-4304 or visit Coronavirus.wv.gov.
Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) and Rep. Alex Mooney (R-WV) attended Gov. Jim Justice’s (R-WV) news conference on Wednesday. They addressed West Virginians about the latest efforts being made on the next round of federal funding called the HEALS Act which includes more than $1 billion for reopening schools.
The Governor offered condolences to the families of those who lost loved ones since his last briefing on Monday. As always, he stated these should be remembered as individuals not statistics.
After listening to further advice, there is an additional tweak being made to the School Alert System to help benefit smaller counties. He did not release the information, but stated it would likely be announced on Friday, Aug. 21.
West Virginia Superintendent of Schools Clayton Burch stated after receiving surveys from the community, 79-percent of students requested to attend school in person.
There are now 26 outbreaks at long-term care facilities. Among those the Governor particularly focused on Pine Lodge Center in Raleigh County and Princeton Health Care Center in Mercer County.
The closure of bars in Monongalia County was extended another 11 days. They will reopen on Aug. 31. Entrance will be restricted to those who are 21-year-old and over. There will be no dance floors or live entertainment, but they will be allowed to expand their outdoor service.
The Small Business Grants will be opened to sole proprietors and the self employed. This will be at $2,000. The Governor said that could change depending on how many people apply for the grants.
The R-T number is 0.91, which sets West Virginia as ninth in the nation for preventing the spread of COVID-19. Dr. Clay Marsh announced that as higher education and schools resume this will be an important metric to watch.
All the money for all Volunteer Fire Departments are ready to go. That is $10,000 each. The Governor announced it will be delivered on Aug. 19, 2020.