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‘Action is unpopular, but inaction is deadly’: Beshear announces new COVID-19 restrictions

Published: Nov. 18, 2020 at 3:44 PM EST
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) - Governor Andy Beshear has announced new restrictions for the state of Kentucky as COVID-19 cases are on the rise.

Gov. Beshear reported 2,753 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, bringing the state total to 144,753 cases. The governor says the state is seeing a 9.13 percent positivity rate. Of Wednesday’s new cases, 292 are in kids 18 or younger.

There were 15 reported COVID-19 related deaths on Wednesday. The state death total is now 1,712. One of those deaths include a 15-year-old girl that did have “significant pre-existing conditions,” the governor says. But she is the first student to die of COVID complications.

The deaths reported Wednesday include a 15-year-old girl from Ballard County; a 60-year-old man from Barren County; a 75-year-old man from Caldwell County; a 90-year-old man from Calloway County; two women, ages 78 and 91, from Christian County; an 87-year-old man from Clay County; a 43-year-old man from Fayette County; a 78-year-old man from Hancock County; two women, ages 32 and 73, from Jefferson County; a 78-year-old man from Marshall County; a 68-year-old woman from McCracken County; an 86-year-old woman from Nelson County; and a 79-year-old woman from Pike County.

As of Wednesday, 1,553 people are hospitalized for COVID-19 related reasons, 359 are in the ICU, and 176 are on ventilators. At least 25,058 Kentuckians have recovered from the virus.

The governor announced several steps that will go from Friday, Nov. 20 at 5 p.m. through Sunday, Dec. 13.

  1. Limiting private indoor gatherings to just your household, plus one other household and must not exceed eight people.
  2. Limiting attendance at venue spaces, including weddings and funerals, to a maximum of 25 people.
  3. Bars and restaurants will be closed for indoor service during that time.
  4. Gov. Beshear says gyms will be limited to 33% capacity, you must wear a mask, and group classes will be prohibited.
  5. Professional services and business offices should allow employees to work from home.
  6. The governor says all public and private schools are to cease in-person instruction beginning Nov. 23. Middle and high schools will remain in remote instruction until Jan 4., while elementary schools may reopen on Dec. 7 if their county is not in the red zone.

The governor announced the launch of a $40 million fund to assist restaurants and bars impacted by the closure of indoor dining. Entities that qualify will receive $10,000 to use for various costs. Businesses will be able to apply online.

(Story continues below tweets.)

Earlier today, the KHSAA voted to push back the start of winter sports to Jan 4.

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