Coronavirus Update: Judge Rules in Favor of Bars, OSU Football Announces Plans & More
Keep up with regular news updates regarding Columbus and Ohio’s response to COVID-19 here.
COVID-19 cases — As of Tuesday, July 28, 12,636 cases and 389 deaths from COVID-19 have been reported or are probable in Columbus and Worthington. Countywide, 16,840 cases and 514 deaths from COVID-19 have been reported by Columbus Public Health and Franklin County Public Health.
Statewide, 86,497 cases and 3,382 deaths have been confirmed or are probable, as reported by the Ohio Department of Health.
Judge Rules Bars and Restaurants Can Stay Open — On Tuesday, over a dozen Columbus restaurants and bars, including 16-Bit, Pins Mechanical Co. and Late Night Slice, filed a lawsuit against the City of Columbus. Later on Tuesday, a judge granted a temporary injunction against the ordinance that would have required restaurants, bars and nightclubs to close by 10 p.m., arguing restaurants and bars would suffer, according to ABC6. A full hearing is set for a later date.
Columbus City Schools Announces New Reopening Plan — Columbus City Schools Superintendent and CEO Dr. Talisa Dixon announced on Tuesday, July 28, that Columbus City Schools will now begin the 2020-2021 school year fully remote.
The change was announced as the “final decision” for the district, weeks after originally announcing a reopening plan that included a hybrid of in-person and virtual learning.
Students will begin virtual learning on Tuesday, September 8 and will remain doing so through at least the first quarter of the school year.
“The spread of new COVID-19 infections continues to increase dramatically in the city of Columbus and within our school district boundaries and zip codes,” said Dr. Dixon in a letter sent out to CCS families. “Although it was our hope that we could return to some form of in-person learning in September, the risk of bringing back 50,000 students and 9,000 employees to our buildings in the fall is far too great.”
Dr. Dixon noted the remote learning this fall would be different than the remote learning that took place this past spring, with teachers and staff participating in training for a new curriculum and staying in contact with students on a more frequent and regular basis.
Access to educational, social and emotional support services, as well as, breakfast and lunch, technology and other family needs are to be announced.
To learn more, visit the Columbus City Schools website.
Attendance at OSU Football Games Capped — On Tuesday, The Ohio State University announced that fan attendance at OSU football games this fall would be capped at 20%— if games occur.
While announcing details regarding opt-out options for season ticket holders, The Ohio State University Department of Athletics announced social distancing and masks will be required for fans at Ohio Stadium.
“While no final decision has been made regarding the 2020 football season, the Department of Athletics has been working diligently with university leaders, public health experts and government officials to create game day plans that protect the health, safety and well-being of our student-athletes, staff, faculty and fans,” the department said.
In addition, there will be no tailgating this season, the university said, and limited concessions will be available.
Governor Announces Optional Changes for Childcare — On Tuesday, Governor Mike DeWine announced that starting August 9, childcare providers would be allowed to return to normal class sizes.
Childcare providers are given the choice to return to normal child-staff ratios, or remain at reduced ratios and keep their subsidies to offset costs.
All health protocols, included regular staff symptom checks, rigorous handwashing procedures and more, will be in place, with new guidance to be announced.
City of Columbus Announces More CARES Act Social Services Funding — On Tuesday, city officials announced that the city will use $6.2 million of CARES Act dollars to help childcare providers that serve low-income children handle new regulations amid the pandemic, with Franklin County contributing an additional $2 million of its own CARES Act funding.
Additionally, $10 million in CARES Act funds will be used for rental and utility assistance and just over $1 million for utility assistance grants, to be distributed through various social services agencies.
For more information on COVID-19 in Ohio, visit coronavirus.ohio.gov or call 1-833-4-ASK-ODH.