The movie screens are going dark in Richland County, at least temporarily.
Monday’s daily news conference by the Governor of Ohio, a staple in the last few days as COVID-19 begins to impact Ohioans, had national, statewide, and local ramifications.
Initially resistant to changing the date of Ohio’s Primary Election on Tuesday, Governor DeWine announced that he would recommend that the vote be extended through Tuesday, June 2. Much was shared about the work of local boards of election to make the experience as safe as possible for voters, however the Governor shared that no one should be asked to put their health at risk in order to exercise a constitutional right and duty.
Absentee voting would continue through that new date, DeWine said, with in-person voting taking place on that new date.
The legal footing for this is not solid, DeWine admitted, with the only stated basis for such a move being an actual invasion. To that end, he said that the State of Ohio would be filing a lawsuit later that afternoon seeking a judicial determination as to the legitimacy of the delay.
Announcements also took place about new and revised restrictions on business activity. Consistent with revised guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the restriction on assemblies with more than 100 people has been changed to include all assemblies with at least 50 people.
Also, the following businesses were ordered to close by end of business on Monday: gyms, fitness centers, recreation centers, bowling alleys, indoor water parks, movie theatres, and trampoline parks. This comes just one day after a similar measure shut down Ohio’s restaurants and bars to all but carry out and delivery purchases.
At 2:00 PM on Monday, the Ohio Department of Health published updated infection statistics. As of that time there were 50 verified infections in 12 counties, as follows: