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Coronavirus

Virtual injection well meeting canceled

ST. CLAIRSVILLE — A virtual meeting on Good Friday was ruled insufficient to allow public input on a proposed wastewater injection well site west of St. Clairsville. The project at the intersection of Interstate 70, U.S. 40 and Ohio 331 would include a pair of injection wells that would ...

COVID cases continue to jump

ST. CLAIRSVILLE — New positive cases of the novel coronavirus COVID-19 are increasing daily in Belmont County. Deputy Health Director Robert Sproul reported nine new cases Thursday, bringing the total number of positives to 41 so far, with nine recovered. The nine new positives are four ...

IMF sees worst downturn since Great Depression

WASHINGTON (AP) — The coronavirus pandemic will push the global economy into the deepest recession since the Great Depression, with the world’s poorest countries suffering the most, the head of the International Monetary Fund said Thursday. “We anticipate the worst economic fallout ...

Smithfield temporarily shuts pork plant due to coronavirus

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — A Smithfield Foods pork processing plant in South Dakota will temporarily close for cleaning after more than 80 employees were confirmed to have the coronavirus, the company announced Thursday. Smithfield Foods plans to suspend operations in a large section of the ...

Rainbow-painted fence offers hope

MARTINS FERRY — A Martins Ferry woman painted a rainbow and words of encouragement on her Broadway Street fence to brighten people’s day, if only for a moment, during the coronavirus pandemic. Sharon Abbott said she got the idea for the fence painting after watching a segment on the ...

Churches confront restrictions on Easter services

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — At the holiest time of year for Christians, churches are wrestling with how to hold services amid the coronavirus outbreak, and in some cases, that has set up showdowns with local governments over restrictions that forbid large gatherings. Many churches are ...

Banks face rush of applications for COVID-19 assistance

PARKERSBURG, W.Va. — The nation’s banks were still receiving guidance late April 2 on the $349 billion federal loan program aimed at helping small businesses stay afloat during the COVID-19 pandemic. On April 3, the floodgates opened. “We received some of the guidance Thursday night ...

Countries start thinking about easing up on restrictions

NEW YORK (AP) — Even as coronavirus deaths mount across Europe and New York, the U.S. and other countries are starting to contemplate an exit strategy and thinking about a staggered and carefully calibrated easing of the restrictions designed to curb the scourge. “To end the confinement, ...

Staff agrees to live in nursing homes to protect residents

NEWARK, Ohio (AP) — At noon on March 12, two Licking County assisted-living facilities closed their doors to the outside world for the sake of the 225 vulnerable residents within. They had been preparing for that day for three weeks, enlisting staff members who would be willing to commit to ...

Steubenville contract talks at a standstill

STEUBENVILLE — Contract talks for the city’s largest bargaining unit are at a standstill until attorneys either figure out how to conduct negotiations without breaking social distancing guidelines or the governor lifts his ban on public gatherings. For now, the 89 members of the American ...

Ohio governor announces coronavirus death of prison guard

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Gov. Mike DeWine announced the coronavirus-related death of a state prison guard, while the number of prison employees with COVID-19 jumped to 48, along with 17 inmates. DeWine also urged institutions with surgical masks not to throw them away because a new sanitizing ...

County has first COVID death

ST. CLAIRSVILLE – Belmont County had its first death related to the novel coronavirus COVID-19 Monday. The Belmont County Health Department reported the death of a hospitalized patient who had tested positive for the virus. Deputy Health Commissioner Robert Sproul said the patient was a ...

Additional restrictions in effect in Ohio

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ten Ohio inmates at two prisons and 27 staff members at four prisons have now tested positive for the coronavirus, Gov. Mike DeWine said Monday. He also authorized members of the Ohio National Guard to help officials at a federal prison where seven inmates tested ...

Hospital employees cleared

BARNESVILLE — Thirty employees of WVU Medicine Barnesville Hospital are able to return to work after a brief quarantine. The workers were quarantined last week after having contact with a patient who tested positive for COVID-19. Spokeswoman Karin Janisewski confirmed Monday, though, that ...

Leaders object to virtual meeting

ST. CLAIRSVILLE — Belmont County commissioners officially registered their objections to a virtual public meeting regarding two proposed injection wells Monday in a letter to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. The board wrote to ODNR Director Mary Mertz about permits filed by Omni ...

Rep. Cera named to economic group

COLUMBUS — State Rep. Jack Cera was selected by leadership in the Ohio House of Representatives to serve on a new work group panel to help Ohio recover from the economic downturn created from the coronavirus pandemic. Cera, D-Bellaire, joins 23 legislators in the Ohio House of ...

COVID-19 testing center opens

GLEN DALE – WVU Medicine Reynolds Memorial Hospital has opened a COVID-19 symptomatic testing center — the second of its kind in the Northern Panhandle — as health officials brace for an expected surge in coronavirus cases in the coming weeks. The off-site location opened Thursday ...

Belmont County reports first COVID-19 death

ST. CLAIRSVILLE – The Belmont County Health Department on Monday reported the death of a hospitalized patient who had tested positive for the novel coronavirus. The patient was a 92-year-old man who had underlying health conditions. “On behalf of the entire county, we express our deepest ...

Hospital employees quarantined

BARNESVILLE — More than two dozen employees of WVU Medicine Barnesville Hospital are quarantined after having contact with a patient who tested positive for COVID-19. Spokeswoman Karin Janisewski confirmed Sunday that 30 employees are affected. She also provided a statement issued by ...

St. C. suspends late fees

ST. CLAIRSVILLE – Residents having difficulties making utility payments due to the novel coronavirus pandemic will have some relief during the next two months. During a teleconference last week, city council unanimously voted to temporarily suspend late fees on utility bills from March 1 ...