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Gov. DeWine meeting with all of Ohio counties to fight COVID; Cuyahoga was one of the first on his list

Cuyahoga Co. may reach highest COVID-19 risk level Thurs.
Cuyahoga County Administrative Headquarters
Posted at 5:30 PM, Oct 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-28 19:20:08-04

CLEVELAND — Governor DeWine says he’s taking a grassroots approach to fight COVID 19.

He’s hosting virtual workgroups to talk through problems. Cuyahoga County was on the top of his list; the governor says the county is doing all the right things.

"You've done well. The state has done well. But we've got another one. And we're into a very tough, tough period of time,” said Governor Mike DeWine. "We had school administrators on each of the calls. And each time we got a question, if our county goes purple, are you going to do something in regard to our schools? And the answer is no. So far, we have left it up to local school districts."

As an example, Olmsted Falls City Schools, which is currently operating on a hybrid learning model, states on their website they will switch to a fully remote learning plan for at least two weeks if Cuyahoga County were to elevate to purple Level 4 on the Public Health Advisory System.

DeWine says if Cuyahoga County reaches the purple alert level, he’s not ready to mandate any new shutdowns.

Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish was on the call with the governor.

"I got no impression that the governor wanted to shut down anything," Budish said. "I don’t believe he wants to shut down the schools, I don’t believe he wants to shut down the businesses, but he’s, like everybody else, frustrated with the fact that this virus continues to grow."

So, if we’re not shutting things down and the cases continue to rise, how do we get out of this mess?

"He was encouraging us to continue to message more than ever the importance of wearing masks, social distancing, washing your hands, sanitizing being prudent,” said the county executive. "I don’t know that I can say that anything that was new or startling, it was more of emphasizing what we know, I think most of us know but have seem to forgotten over the last few months.”

Budish emphasized the dangers of big gatherings during the holidays.

"Thanksgiving is a wonderful time for family's get-togethers — do it by Zoom,” he said. "If you get together in person, you’re creating a risk, that’s what the governor is worried about.”

Budish says Cuyahoga County will keep assessing conditions day-by-day.