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City Manager: Lock Haven’s COVID-19 infection rate drops

LOCK HAVEN – City Manager Gregory Wilson gave city council good news during their regular meeting.

Wilson announced that the city zip code’s COVID-19 14-day infection rate dropped below 100 per 100,000 as of Monday.

The current rate sits at about 53 per 100,000, he said.

“We were three days before that teetering in the 90s,” he said. “Which is good news. That to a degree points to the fact that it’s been two weeks since Lock Haven University began classes.”

Wilson said he plans to reach out to the university, who had been testing students and staff personally, to learn about their current results.

Once the infection rate remains below 100 per 100,000 for 14 days straight mandates that went into effect through the emergency declaration on Sept. 23 by Mayor Joel Long will be lifted.

The additions included the closure of public ball fields and city owned parks; a moratorium placed on the use of city owned parks and public property for gatherings and events; and no outdoor entertainment taking place in the open street area of the Pedestrian Mall.

Wilson noted that the additions were to help mitigate possible spread of COVID-19 and the potential strain new cases could put on the healthcare system.

“The actions taken by council in the end are in order to not overwhelm the healthcare system,” he said. He added that Clinton County doesn’t currently have an operational hospital with UPMC Lock Haven still closed and neighboring counties Centre and Lycoming have a limited number of ICU beds.

“We’ll continue to watch the 14 day incidence rate,” he concluded.

Although the three restrictions will be lifted once the incidence rate reaches below 100 per 100,000 after 14 days, others will remain in place until the city rate falls below 50 per 100,000.

On Sept. 8, due to a spike of COVID-19 cases reaching above this level, city owned facilities and playgrounds were closed with green spaces open but gatherings restricted to 25 people or less.

These aspects of the emergency declaration will remain intact until the city’s zip code sees its infection rate fall below the 50 per 100,000.

In other business council:

– Readopted three policies per the Community Development Block Grant guidelines including the Code of Conduct policy first adopted in 2013; a policy prohibiting the excessive use of force during public protests first adopted in 2005; and a drug free work place policy first adopted in 1997.

– Approved a use request for a wedding in Zindel Park on Oct. 23, 2021.

– Received notice of changes to channels and packages through the city’s TV provider Comcast. Wilson said individual users would be notified of the changes as well.

All members of council were present for Monday night’s meeting held via livestream on the city’s Facebook and YouTube channels.

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