TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR APRIL 2ND 2020

The entire state of Pennsylvania is now under a stay-at-home order. Governor Tom Wolf says this is the most prudent option to stop the spread of COVID-19. The executive order added the remaining 34 counties to his existing stay-at-home order. The order is expected to last until April 30th and residents may only leave for essential activities.

The Visiting Nurses Association of Western P-A is hoping potential personal protective equipment donors keep them in mind.  Representatives with Lutheran Senior Life V-N-A say their clinicians still have to provide care for patients inside their homes.  They are looking for anyone who can either make a donation or who would be willing to make face masks.

Six employees at a rehab center in Beaver County are testing positive for COVID-19.  Two residents at the Brighton Rehab and Wellness Center died earlier this week due to COVID-19 complications and over 20 patients who have tested positive.  The employee’s union is expected to meet with management soon on the matter.

Tariffs are being blamed for the closing of a Beaver County steel mill.  Allegheny Technologies officials say it will shut down its stainless steel plant in Midland by the end of June, putting 70 people out of work.  The company says it’s had to pay 37-million-dollars in tariffs on materials that were imported from Indonesia over the past two years.

The Pennsylvania Department of Health reported 962 new cases of COVID-19 Wednesday, bringing the state total up to 5,805 in 60 counties. The DOH also reported 11 new deaths, for a total of 74 coronavirus-related deaths statewide. According to the DOH, 620 patients have been hospitalized due to coronavirus since March 6.

Rochester Township Police are still searching for a hit-and-run driver who hit a horse on Sunday.  Authorities say, a white Kia Optima with two females inside hit a horse just after 5 p.m. at the intersection of Reno Street and Noonen Street.  The vehicle may have damage and a broken mirror on the passenger side.  The horse has a minor injury to its hind leg and the rider wasn’t hurt in the incident.

Pennsylvania’s school districts are receiving about five-million dollars for funding. The Department of Education says the grants will help districts provide continued online instruction and purchase equipment. The state is providing new course offerings provided through two online programs Odysseyware and Edgenuity.

The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board is re-opening its online portal for liquor and wine sales. P-L-C-B officials say they will be accepting a controlled number of orders per day after Governor Tom Wolf’s announcement caused a surge of buyers and the site crashed. Customers will be limited to buying six bottles per transaction and the online order portal will open randomly to prevent the site from getting overwhelmed.

Pennsylvania businesses have until Friday to apply for a waiver to stay open during the coronavirus crisis.  D-C-E-D officials say the exemption application process will close Friday evening.  Pennlive reports the commonwealth has received more than 32-thousand waiver requests by the end of the day on Tuesday.  Businesses are asked to not apply for a waiver more than once and not to apply again if they haven’t gotten a response.  Each waiver is being reviewed and will be responded to by email.

Sheetz stores are stepping up to feed children in need during the COVID-19 pandemic.  The Altoona-based company says it’ll launch the Kidz Meal Bagz program today.  Children will receive a free turkey sandwich, chips and drink to provide some nourishment while they’re out of school.