Siouxland District Health Approves A Formal Mask Recommendation

Aug 14, 2020

Courtesy, Siouxland District Health

Noon News 081420

Officials say it will take five days or longer to restore power to some Iowa homes and businesses that have been without electricity after a wind storm left damage across the Midwest on Monday and killed at least four people.  The Siouxland District Health Department has reported ten new cases of COVID-19 in Woodbury County on Friday.Health officials said the additional cases are from the 114 tests reported on Thursday.According to the Iowa Department of Public Health as of 9:38 a.m. on August 14, there are 3,779 positive cases of COVID-19 in the county.The county’s health department announced no new virus-related deaths, meaning the death toll remains at 52. Siouxland District Health Department’s board of health has approved a formal mask recommendation for Woodbury County that falls short of a mandate.The recommendation strongly encourages people to wear cloth face masks in “public settings,” and when they’re around people outside of their immediate household.  Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds says local governments can’t mandate masks while her statewide emergency order is in place. Some cities and counties have challenged this by issuing their own orders. The director of Siouxland District Health recently told IPR that he’s keeping an eye on how Linn County’s situation plays out. County supervisors and mayors have issued a proclamation formally calling on Reynolds to allow local governments to make their own mask mandates. The coronavirus continues to grow in Iowa. The state has reported 50,807 cases, and 964 deaths.  South Dakota 9897 cases, 362 deaths. State health officials say they will stick to recommendations that only people with COVID-19 symptoms or exposure to the coronavirus get tested. An increase in testing nationwide is delaying test results. As large gatherings such as the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally and the state fair get underway, local officials are planning to conduct mass testing to screen for outbreaks. But the Department of Health is balancing calls for more mass screening by making sure they can get test results quickly.  Nebraska had accounted for 29,660 cases: 7,837 active cases, 21,463 recovered cases and 360 deaths.Dakota County had 1,908 cases. Several Nebraska counties that initially seemed to have success battling COVID-19 are now seeing large case surges. And it appears that much of the increase can be attributed to gatherings. Nebraska lawmakers have approved new tax credits for homeowners, farmers, and businesses and put more restrictions on abortions. They finish a session marred by ugly public disputes and criticism that they didn’t do enough to address the coronavirus pandemic. The 60-day session ended after several last-minute, unsuccessful attempts to derail the tax and abortion bills. Lawmakers gave both measures final approval and sent them to Gov. Pete Ricketts, who’s expected to sign them. President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign has sued two Democratic-leaning Iowa counties, making it easy to vote by mail during the coronavirus pandemic. 

The campaign seeks to invalidate tens of thousands of voters’ absentee ballot applications in Linn and Johnson counties. At issue are absentee ballot request forms that the counties send to registered voters with personal information already filled in.

The GOP lawsuits argue that the auditors violate a state directive by prepopulating the forms and that any ballots cast in response to the mailings may be subject to legal challenge.Officials say it will take five days or longer to restore power to some Iowa homes and businesses that have been without electricity after a wind storm left damage across the Midwest on Monday and killed at least four people.