Wednesday Update: Another Death in Stark County, Testing Numbers Announced

COLUMBUS (News Talk 1480 WHBC) – Once again, Governor Mike DeWine along with other state leaders and health officials spoke in Columbus, providing updates on COVID-19. Below is a complete outline on everything that was discussed.

Update on Cases

Another day, another major jump in confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ohio. The Ohio Department of Health (ODH) reported that there are now 704 confirmed cases in the Buckeye State. Two more people have died bringing Ohio’s total to 10. One of those additional deaths is in Stark County.

182 Ohioans have been hospitalized so far. 75 have been admitted into the intensive care unit. Cases range in age from infancy to 94, with the median age being 51 years old. Still just 12 confirmed cases in Stark County.


For the first time, Dr. Amy Acton with the Ohio Department of Health says that 14,764 COVID-19 tests have been given so far in the Buckeye State. This means that just 4.7% of tests have ended with a confirmed cases of the cornoavirus. Acton says like the number of confirmed cases, the testing numbers are always updating.

Relief Package is Coming

The Ohio Senate has already agreed to a bill that would extend voting in the primary election, prohibit water companies from shutting off people’s services and provide a grace period to state income tax filers and expired state license holders.

“We are grateful to the delegation for working on expanding unemployment assistance, helping individuals, aid to hospitals, food aid, small business loans, and transportation assistance are just some of the many ways the federal government is helping the states through this crisis,” DeWine said.

The State house is expected t approved the bill soon. If approved, it will be the legislatures first action since the COVID-19 outbreak arrived in Ohio.

We will provide more details on the entire bill once it is approved.

Commercial Drivers License Regulations

Lt. Governor Jon Husted says the U.S. Department of Transportation has cut red tape related to obtaining or renewing CDLs and other licenses that are vital to the efficient movement of essential goods across the state and country. This allows essential businesses to hire more drivers to help move needed supplies.

Winter Crisis Program Extended

The Development Services Agency has secured approval from the US Dept. of Health & Human Services to extend the Winter Crisis Program from March 31 to May 1.

Cracking Down on Companies Who Break the Rules

Just days after the state ordered that all non-essential businesses close, Lt. Governor Jon Husted spoke about how some who are ignoring the rules will soon be punished.

“We are starting to take action today against a company, and we expect it won’t be the last company,” said DeWine “Businesses that clearly are not essential but remain open.”

Husted says the state hopes everyone is back in business shortly, but experts don’t think the coronavirus spread will peak until May 1.