Friday Afternoon Regional Coronavirus/COVID-19 Update

IDPH: Two More Deaths from COVID-19, New Total 235 Cases 

(Des Moines, IA) -- The Iowa Department of Public Health is confirming two more Iowans have died from COVID-19. The department says the individuals include a person over 81-years-old from Poweshiek (POW-whe-sheek) County and a person between 61 and 80-years-old in Allamakee [[AL-uh-mackie]] County. There are now 235-positive cases of coronavirus in 46-Iowa counties.

Gov. Reynolds: Iowa Follows Department of Homeland Security Essential Industries List 

(Des Moines, IA) -- Only essential workers are going to the office to limit the spread of coronavirus. Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds says Iowa will rely on the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's list of essential industries. The list includes people who work in healthcare, law enforcement and public safety, food and agriculture, energy, water and wastewater, transportation, public works, communications and I.T., government facilities, critical manufacturing, and hazardous materials.

Physicians Clinic of Iowa Changing Hours, Restricting Entrances to Three

(Cedar Rapids, IA) -- Physicians Clinic of Iowa is changing its hours and restricting access inside the clinics to limit the spread of COVID-19. The Cedar Rapids campus is now open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. All entrances are now closed excluding Parking Ramp E, the 10th Street entrance by Caribou Coffee, and Parking Ramp D to Medical Pavillion two. The North Liberty clinic location is now temporarily closed. 

College Community School District Provides Free Meals for Students 

(Cedar Rapids, IA) -- College Community School District is providing free meals for students. The school says 'Grab-and-Go' meals can now be picked up Monday through Friday from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at multiple locations around Cedar Rapids. The school says the child receiving the meal must be present to receive it. Meals can be picked up at Grant and Hoover Elementary schools, Prairie Hill Elementary School, and Ely [[EE-lie]] City Park. More locations can be found on the College Community School District Facebook page. 

Cornell College Esports Team Donates Computer Power to Aid COVID-19 Research 

(Mount Vernon, IA) -- Cornell College's Esports team is donating its computing power to aid coronavirus researchers. The school says the team has 12-computers sitting unused and the team is giving its clock cycles to a global network of PC's to form a supercomputer that will simulate COVID-19 proteins. The simulation will help researchers learn more about the virus and how to cure it. Coach Mayson Sheehan says the team will donate the clock cycles for as long as necessary.

Whiteside County Identifies Second Positive COVID-19 Case 

(Whiteside Co., IL) -- The Whiteside County Health Department is confirming the second positive coronavirus case in the county. The department today says the individual is an adult in their 60s who is currently isolated at home. The department says they expect cases to increase and the actual number of cases in the county is most likely higher than those reported. The county's Communicable Disease Team is monitoring the individual and those who are close to them.

Friendship Manor Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19

(Rock Island, IL) -- An employee at Friendship Manor in Rock Island is testing positive for COVID-19. The employee yesterday shared their results with Friendship Manor and the health center has since notified all residents, staff, and families of the test. Friendship Manor's Health Center says the employee hasn't been at work for two-weeks since they began developing symptoms and voluntarily self-quarantined at home. Manor officials say they've also been screening anyone who enters the building for some time since the mandates from the Centers for Disease Control and Illinois Department of Public Health.

Rock Island Partnership Helps Small Businesses Get Grants 

(Rock Island, IL) -- The Rock Island Partnership is helping small businesses impacted by COVID-19. The Development Association of Rock Island will partner with the city to give qualifying small businesses working capital grants of up to 25-hundred-dollars. Applications are now being accepted on a first-come, first-serve basis. Applications, qualifications and more information about the grants can be found on Rock-Island-Forward-dot-com. 

Gov. Wants Absentee Ballots Sent Out

(Madison, WI) -- Governor Tony Evers wants an absentee ballot sent to every Wisconsin voter. The governor wants the state legislature to come together and pen a new law that would send an absentee ballot to registered voters and also extend the time that clerks have to count the votes. Evers wants every voter in state to be able to cast a ballot in the upcoming spring elections as well as the November presidential election despite the restrictions of the coronavirus. 

Two More COVID-19 Connected Deaths At Senior Care Facility

(Madison, WI) -- Officials in Ozaukee County confirm two more people have died of COVID-19 at a senior care facility. The victims were residents at Village Pointe Commons in Grafton. Fourteen people have died from the Coronavirus statewide and more than 700 Wisconsinites have tested positive including two inmates at the Dane County Jail.

Gov. Orders Pause On Evictions, Foreclosures

(Madison, WI) -- There is a temporary order to suspend evictions and foreclosures in the state. Governor Evers ordered the move today in light of the public health emergency caused by the coronavirus. The order does not relieve a person of their responsibility to pay rent or mortgage. But it does prohibit landlords from evicting tenants and postpones civil action to foreclose on real estate for 60 days.

Rosedale, Burnsville, Har Mar Malls Will Close By Weekend

(Undated) -- Three Twin Cities malls are expected to close this weekend due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Rosedale Center will shutdown at 5 p.m. today and is expected to be closed until at least April 10th. Meanwhile, Har Mar Mall and Burnsville Center Mall are also closing. Several of the restaurants are staying open for curbside pickup and delivery.

Delta Cuts Flights Between Minneapolis-St. Paul And Hawaii And Other Countries

(Minneapolis, MN) -- Delta Air Lines has temporarily ended Minnesota's direct connections to Hawaii and most places overseas, including Canada. The move is part of the ongoing reduction in its flight capacity as demand continues to weaken for air travel. Delta last week said it was reducing its overall capacity by 70 percent. The airline will end the daily direct flights between MSP and Tokyo's Haneda International Airport on April 1st.

St. Paul's Grand Old Day Canceled Due To COVID-19

(St. Paul, MN) -- St. Paul's Grand Old Day street fest has been canceled this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Organizers released a statement yesterday online that the decision to cancel was made jointly with city leaders and the St. Paul Police Department. The fest, which attracts hundreds of thousands of people to St. Paul's Grand Avenue, had been scheduled for June 7th. Organizers considered rescheduling it for September but decided against it.

Local Manufacturer Making Free Desks for Students 

(Turtle Lake, WI) -- A local manufacturer is making free desks for students in Baron County. Infinity Retail Services in Turtle Lake has already made close to 300 free desks to give students doing their schoolwork at home. Engineer Brock Molls says the idea came this week after watching families with kids struggling to find a place to do their schoolwork at home. C-E-O Kevin Jansen says the company is using some leftover material to make the desks that can be assembled in ten-minutes. Free desks can be picked up at Infinity Retail Services on Western Boulevard in Turtle Lake. 

(KCRG) Big Ten Cancels All Spring Athletic Activities

This is in addition to them canceling all conference and non-conference competitions through the academic year. They also announced earlier that they will be suspending all on and off campus recruiting activities. The Big Ten Conference stated that they will be using this time to work with medical experts to determine the next best steps moving forward.

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