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Posted on: May 29, 2020

COVID-19 Update - May 29, 2020

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The City of Gloucester continues to advance measures to limit person to person contact to help slow the spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19).  Everyone should continue to follow the guidelines and recommendations from the City, the CDC and the DPH. 

The following are timely updates, announcements, and reminders from the City.

New Updates & Information

 PHASE 2 REOPENING MASSACHUSETTS PREVIEW FOR RESTAURANTS & LODGING:  Earlier today the Baker-Polito Administration previewed the mandatory safety standards, recommended best practices and a checklist for restaurants and lodging. Restaurants may not provide any service beyond carry-out or delivery until specifically authorized to do so in Phase 2 of the Commonwealth’s Workplace Re-Opening Plan.  Hotel, motels, and other Lodging businesses may not expand their operations until specifically authorized to do so in Phase 2 of the Commonwealth’s Workplace Re-Opening Plan and by the withdrawal of the DPH Lodging Guidance. These workplace safety standards for restaurants and lodging have been posted in advance of the Governor’s initiation of Phase 2 to allow restaurants and lodging establishments’ time to prepare to operate in compliance with these mandatory health and safety standards. 

COVID-19 COMMAND CENTER RELEASES NEW COMMUNITY LEVEL DATA:  The Massachusetts COVID-19 Command Center recently announced additional data is now reported on a daily and weekly basis related to COVID-19. Among other information, every week data on City and Town COVID-19 tests and test rate and percent positivity will be available.  For the most recent report click here.  For more information on other data released click here.   

 GLOUCESTER’S PHASE 1 OPENING OF BEACHES AND STAGE FORT PARK:  Good Harbor Beach is open to residents ONLY, at a reduced capacity. Wingaersheek Beach is open to residents and a limited number of non-residents, at a reduced capacity.  Stage Fort Park is open to the public.  Parking at Good Harbor, Wingaersheek, and Stage Fort Park will be open to residents with a 2019 or 2020 beach parking sticker or license & motor vehicle registration showing a Gloucester address for entry.  Non-residents will be required to pay daily parking rates at Wingaersheek and Stage Fort Park.  Cash only and exact change is preferred.  Parking at Niles and Plum Cove Beaches will be for residents only with a 2019 or 2020 beach parking sticker.  No parking will be available on Farrington Avenue for beach access and this will be enforced by the Gloucester Police Department.  All beach visitors are required to set up at least 12 feet apart from other groups on their towels, limit groups to no more than 10 people; wear face coverings or masks (except when swimming), and carry in, carry out trash.  

IRS STIMULUS PAYMENTS:  The IRS continues to calculate and automatically send out Economic Impact Payments.  The money may arrive in a variety of ways: direct deposit to bank accounts, Direct Express cards connected to other federal programs, paper check in the regular mail and prepaid debit cards.  Pay attention if you get a plain envelope in the mail that’s marked "Money Network Cardholder Services." It will not say the IRS or the Treasury or Washington D.C., which is what most would expect on a stimulus check.  The envelope contains a prepaid debit card that is loaded with your stimulus payment. The cards are marked Visa debit card, and the back of the card has the logo for MetaBank. For more information about the Economic Impact Payment Card please visit:  www.eipcard.com.

BEACH PARKING STICKERS: Resident and senior resident beach stickers are currently available by mail only. Non-resident beach stickers will not be sold this year.  The beach sticker application is available at www.gloucester-ma.gov.  Once completed you can mail it in or drop it in the dropbox at City Hall, with the appropriate documentation and fee.  Processing of beach stickers may take up to two weeks.  If you need assistance filling out the application, or would like to check the status of an application please call 978-281-9708 or email bsticker@gloucester-ma.gov.

REOPENING MASSACHUSETTS:  Reopening Massachusetts, the four-phase plan announced by Governor Baker last week is underway.  For those detailed plans, business guidance and additional information about reopening visit www.mass.gov

  • A summary on phase 1 can be found here
  • Gloucester businesses should visit the Commonwealth’s reopening site and carefully review and then follow the guidance for industries on the reopening plan, information to help businesses meet the self-certification requirement to reopen, and the sector-specific protocols and best practices.

CITY’S REOPENING TASK FORCE SEEKS PUBLIC INPUT: The City’s Reopening Task Force seeks public input to ensure local ideas, concerns and questions are considered as they work to further develop a Gloucester reopening strategy.  Comments can be submitted to reopening@gloucester-ma.gov and will then be forwarded to the appropriate subcommittee chair for review.  For more information on the Task Force click here

Status of Cases

As of today, there have been 245 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the City of Gloucester:  three are currently hospitalized, 48 are currently in isolation, 172 have recovered and sadly 22 have died.   

For a list of COVID-19 cases in Massachusetts, which is updated every evening, click here.   This enhanced, comprehensive and detailed COVID-19 data report, now includes daily and cumulative confirmed cases; cases by hospital, county, and age/sex/ethnicity; testing by date; deaths; hospital capacity; nursing home data; and PPE distribution.

Health Guidance and Recommendations

According to the CDC, symptoms of the virus appear within 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness.

People with these symptoms or combinations of symptoms may have COVID-19: Cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing or at least two of these symptoms:  fever, chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, and new loss of taste or smell. 

If you display symptoms or suspect that you may have come into contact with a person who may be infected, please contact your primary care provider immediately.

Important Local, State & Federal Information and Updates 

Please visit the City of Gloucester’s COVID-19 information page here.   

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