BACKYARD BROADCASTING LOCAL NEWS APRIL 23, 2020

COLOR CODED REOPENING FOR THE COMMONEWEALTH
Governor Tom Wolf last night addressed Pennsylvanians with more details and guidelines about reopening the state on a region by region basis with north central and northwestern segments first to be considered.  A color coded red-yellow-green phase system has been implemented with the commonwealth currently at red meaning all residents will follow stay-at-home orders and only essential business operates. Wolf says the yellow and green phases will come as we hit certain benchmarks.  A primary benchmark is that a county must average fewer than 50 new positive cases of the virus per 100,000 residents for 14 days.  Wolf says if there are flare ups of COVID-19 cases, it’s possible to shut down back to the red phase again if necessary.

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH COVID-19 NUMBERS
The Pennsylvania Department of Health confirmed yesterday that there are 1,156 additional positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the statewide total to 35,684. Officially, Lycoming County has 43 cases and two deaths. Clinton County 13 cases, Sullivan one case, Tioga 15 and two deaths. Among positive and probable cases of COVID-19 in the state, as of yesterday 58 new deaths were reported bringing the statewide total to 1,622.  Sec. of Health Dr. Rachel Levine continues to urge Pennsylvanians to stay home making as few trips as possible to shop  and wear a mask to protect not only yourself, but others. There are 136,272 patients who have tested negative to date.

EVAN GETS FASTER TESTING KITS FOR CERTAIN PATIENTS
Evangelical Community Hospital reports that they have started using a limited supply of COVID-19 RNA testing kits that provide faster results than were previously available. Administrators from Evan  says the kits will be prioritized for patients at the hospital,  Emergency  patients to be admitted, and patients being discharged to skilled nursing facilities. Accoridng to the Sun Gazette, some test kits at Evan are still conducted use of an off site commercial or state lab.  They say 614 patients tested for the virus, 65 of them positive and one death.

FARMER WHO EMPLOY SEASONAL WORKERS MUST FOLLOW COVID-19 GUIDELINES
The state department of Agriculture has set standards for farmers who provide housing for seasonal workers on their properties called the Seasonal Farm Labor Act.  According to the department, farm labor camps must be modified to ensure social distancing in living quarters, as well as standards for sanitation, food facilities and fire protection.  There are also requirements to follow if a worker is diagnosed  with COVID-19.  A complete list of guidelines is available at agriculture.pa.gov.

TURBOTVILLE CANCELS PET PARADE AND CARNIVAL
The Turbotville Area Community Carnival Committee has announced that they have regrettably made the decision to cancel the 2020 Community Carnival and Pet Parade, originally scheduled for June 1st thru the 6th. According to their social media reports, the cancellation comes due to an abundance of caution due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  They are looking forward to the carnival in 2021.

GOLF
A Tiger Woods-Phil Mickelson golf match involving football legends Peyton Manning and Tom Brady is planned for May, according to Turner Sports. “The Match: Champions for Charity” will benefit coronavirus relief. The event will air live on TNT — possibly Memorial Day weekend — at an undisclosed location without spectators.
NFL
The NFL draft could be the most bet on sports event ever tonight, as all sports are shut down due to the corona virus.  Sources involved in the The gambling industry say online betting sites are taking in 3 times the amount of bets and money on this year’s draft compared to last year.  Wagers across the industry could total $5 million IN the US.

MLB
Major League Baseball on Wednesday suspended Boston Red Sox video replay system operator J.T. Watkins without pay through the 2020 postseason and stripped the team of its second-round draft pick this year after completing an investigation into allegations that the Red Sox stole signs during the 2018 season.  Former Red Sox manager Alex Cora, is suspended through the 2020 postseason as well — but only for his previous conduct as Houston’s bench coach,

NHL
NHL greats Wayne Gretzky and Alex Ovechkin might not be the greatest when it comes to virtual hockey, but their online games Wednesday helped raise more than $40,000 for relief efforts related to the coronavirus pandemic. More than 300,000 fans watched their EA Sports NHL 20 showdown via a livestream on the Washington Capitals’ Twitch channel.  Gretzky and Ovechkin matched donations so the money will be split between 2 Canadian food bank funds.

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