Whitesburg KY

More offices and businesses open; number of cases still at four here



As more businesses and offices resume limited operations this week, Covid-19 cases do not seem to be increasing, Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear said Tuesday night.

Beshear said Tuesday that the increase may be related to increased testing in nursing homes, but “We simply don’t have enough data to know.”

The latest figures released yesterday afternoon show 155 new cases of the viral disease in Kentucky and three new deaths. The total number of cases in the state is 10,185 and 442 death, compared to a total of 1,874,620 cases nationwide and 107,846.

The number of Covid-19 cases in Letcher County remain at four, despite more widespread testing.

Restaurants have been open for inside dining with a reduced capacity for more than a week, and local government offices opened a week earlier.

Among the places that reopened this week are the state’s driver’s license offices, and health and wellness centers.

Circuit Clerk Mike Watts said his office reopened Monday, and is accepting applications for driver’s permits and driver’s licenses.

“They pick up the paperwork here and we enter it in to the computer for them here, and it’ll give them a number to call,” Watts said. “They’ll go to Perry County and take the test, and bring it back here and we’ll give them their permit.”

Changes apply to all license tests here. A date for restarting road tests has not been set, Watts said, however drivers whose licenses expire between March 1 and June 30 can apply online at the Kentucky Department of Transportation or ask for an application to be mailed from the clerk’s office to renew their license. The office will then use a photo from the person’s previous license to create a new one.

The requirement for Real ID has also changed. The date that will be required is now October 1, 2021.

Courts also opened on Monday, as did bowling alleys, movie theaters and fitness centers. Those will be followed on June 11 by public and private campgrounds. Childcare and “low-touch” indoor and outdoor youth sports are scheduled to reopen with a reduced capacity June 15. Bars will be the last businesses to reopen, scheduled for July 1. Gatherings of up to 50 people will also be allowed then.

Health officials are still urging residents to wear masks when in public, and to remain six feet apart to prevent coming into contact with droplets of saliva generated when another person speaks, sings, coughs or sneezes.

Gov. Beshear also recommended Tuesday that Kentuckians repeat their Covid-19 tests at least once a month, or more often if they are out of their home often. Many of the tests are free done at no cost to the patient.

Number of Covid-19 cases reported in the surrounding counties are:

Pike – 30

Perry – 21

Knott – 4

Harlan – 4

Wise County, Va. – 25 cases and 2 deaths

Norton, Va. – 2 cases

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