Late this afternoon, Matt Murell, chair of the Columbia County Board of Supervisors, issued this press release:
NEW COVID-19 CASES KEEP COMING
On Thursday morning, Columbia County Department of Health Director Jack Mabb reported nine new cases of COVID-19 in the county, bringing to 256 the number of individuals now under mandatory quarantine as a result of active cases.
Twenty-one Columbia County residents are currently hospitalized, with two receiving treatment in the ICU.
At Ghent Assisted Living, Ghent, 45 residents and 11 staff have now tested positive for COVID-19. Four individuals have died as a result of the outbreak that hit the facility last week.
The county Health Department has recently received several complaints regarding the wearing of face masks in business establishments and a local church, Director Mabb said Thursday, noting that the complaints will be investigated and possibly subject to fines under the governor's new executive order.
"This virus spreads quickly and easily, and we all need to keep that in mind," said Director Mabb. "To try to do everything we can as citizens to keep the spread as low as possible is a simple thing. If you go into a business, put on your mask. It's that simple."
"I would like to remind business owners that they were allowed to re-open earlier in the year under certain guidelines established by the governor," said county Chairman Matt Murell. "Those guidelines, which remain in place, include enforcing the wearing of masks and maintaining social distance in their establishment. None of us want to see a business, or businesses, shut down should COVID-19 strike their business and force a 14-day shutdown."