Weekly COVID-19 numbers from Mass DPH, Halloween message from Mayor McGee, MBTA Seeks Rider Input, & more | October 30, 2020

LYNN NEWS ROUND-UP
OCTOBER 30, 2020

See our other COVID-19 related posts by clicking here.


Check out our 2020 MA State Election Coverage with campaign interviews, voting information, & more by clicking here.


Weekly COVID-19 numbers from Massachusetts Dept. of Public Health

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Every week on the MA Department of Public Health releases numbers for how COVID-19 has impacted the state, and we try to highlight some of these numbers so the community is informed. Their numbers factor in the past week as well as the week before, giving 2 weeks worth of data.

There are currently 77 communities in the yellow category (with 4-8 cases per 100K), & 121 communities in the red (with more than 8 cases per 100K). Last week there were 95 in the yellow and 76 in the red. With this week’s numbers the state of Massachusetts now has approximately 1/3 of communities in the red category. The average age of those infected has been 38, and the average of those hospitalized is 67.

The City of Lynn has seen 3 weeks in a row of growing numbers after a few weeks of decreasing numbers. However, Lynn has seen concerning increases in just one week. The average daily incidence rate per 100,000 over the last 2 weeks was 25.7 this week, but last week it was 17.3. The positivity rate last week was 4.26% but has risen to 5.70% this week. Concerns are being raised about high-risk activities surrounding Halloween leading to an increase in cases. Please see the statement further down from Mayor McGee in regards to this.

The outlook for the nation is not much better. Just yesterday 90,000+ cases were reported, setting a new record. The old record was 84,000 and was set just last week. 41 states are currently seeing a 10% increase in cases. The United States as a whole has now surpasses 9million cases.

Last week state public health officials updated the metric that measures community COVID-19 transmission risks that will incorporate examples where cases at colleges, nursing homes, or jails may push an entire community into the red category and affect decisions about in-person learning, according to the state education commissioner, who added Tuesday that fears of super-spreading schools have turned out to be “somewhat unfounded.” The green-yellow-red stoplight metric announced in August by Governor Baker was quickly adopted by state education officials as the way to determine if in-person, hybrid or remote learning is the best approach in a new school year marked by grave concerns over virus transmission possibilities. The governor a month later emphasized that districts should not react to single incidents, and should make decisions based on three weeks work of community virus data. At last Tuesday’s meeting, Commissioner Riley said he expects the updates to its stoplight metric will reflect “more nuanced” information about virus cases.

Below are the statistics for Lynn & the state, neither of which carry good news.

City/Town Total Case Count Case Count (Last 14 Days) Average Daily Incidence Rate per 100,000 (Last 14 days) Relative Change in Case Counts Total Tests Total Tests (Last 14 days) Total Positive Tests (Last 14 days) Percent Positivity (Last 14 days) Change in Percent Positivity
Lynn 5,444 363 25.7 Higher 69,931 7,999 456 5.70% Higher
STATEWIDE 150,498 11,557 11.8 Higher 5,865,571 899,970 13,974 1.55% Higher

In the past we have listed all of the communities in the red category. Because of the increasing number of red communities we will not be listing them all until they have gone below 20 communities again. If you would like to find out full statistics for the entire state you can find the full weekly report from MA Dept. of Public Health by clicking here.


 

Please click fliers above for the full-resolution images


Street resurfacing on Nahant Place

Dear Homeowners and Residents:

The Lynn Department of Public Works will be resurfacing Nahant Place on Monday November 2, 2020 weather permitting.

No parking signs will be posted in advance with dates and times of restricted parking.

No parking between 7:00am and 5:00pm – Vehicles impeding the construction operation will be towed.

Interruption to traffic flow will occur at times.

Thank you in advance for you cooperation during this project. If you have any questions or concerns please call the Department of Public Works at 781-268-8000.

The above information was provided to us by Lynn DPW


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City of Lynn Reminds Residents to Refrain from Gathering for Halloween

The City of Lynn is reminding residents as we head into Halloween weekend that the State’s Order Regulating Gatherings remains in effect. The City urges residents to refrain from any gathering indoors for any type of Halloween activities or costume parties.

The indoor gatherings limit is 25 persons in a single, enclosed space and 50 persons in an outdoor space, such as a private residence or backyard. For any gatherings of more than 10 people, all persons over the age of 5 must wear a face covering when they attend indoor and outdoor gatherings where participants other than those in the same household will be in attendance, unless they are prevented from wearing a face covering by a medical or disabling condition.

The Lynn Board of Health and their agents, as well as state and municipal police are authorized to enforce this order. The violation of this order may result in a civil fine of up to $500 per violation.

The City of Lynn is still one of the communities in Massachusetts at the highest risk for the spread of COVID-19. Thank you in advance for your cooperation as we continue to take these difficult but necessary steps to keep our families and friends safe from this deadly virus.

___________________________________________

Dear Lynn residents,

As Halloween approaches and Lynn remains at a high risk for COVID-19, I strongly encourage all residents to refrain from engaging in high-risk Halloween activities. Instead, I hope we can find alternative ways to celebrate, as we have had to do all year, in order to keep our community healthy and safe.

The CDC categorizes traditional Halloween activities, like trick or treating or indoor costume parties, as high-risk. The following link and flyer [Editor’s note: this can be found earlier in this news post] break down the CDC’s low, moderate and high-risk activities, which include some different ways to celebrate Halloween safely. The state has also released updated guidance for Halloween during COVID-19, which can be found here. Thank you for all of your continued cooperation and patience during these unprecedented times to stop the spread of COVID-19.

We need to do more to protect our families, loved ones, and community. You can save a life by taking action.

Please take steps now:

  • Wear a mask when outside, or inside shared spaces when you can’t keep a safe distance from others
  • Social Distance
  • Wash your hands often
  • Do not gather with people beyond those you live with
  • Don’t share food or drinks
  • Stay home if you feel sick
  • Follow travel quarantine guidelines
  • Get tested
  • Abide by the quarantine/isolation protocols if you test positive or have been exposed to someone who has tested positive
  • Cooperate with contact tracing

Please visit the City of Lynn COVID-19 Resources Page for more information on how you can get a free COVID-19 test in the City of Lynn until December 31st.

For more information on how to stop the spread of COVID-19, visit Mass.gov/StopCOVID19

Stay safe and be well,

Mayor Thomas. McGee

The above message was sent to us by Mayor McGee’s office


Special double-feature tomorrow on LCTV for Halloween!

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MBTA Seeks Rider Input on Service Priorities; Schedules Forging Ahead Public Meetings

Planning underway to preserve access and quality of service available to customers who are using the system now and rely most on transit for travel. 

The MBTA today announced a series of public engagement efforts to inform riders and stakeholders, and receive their feedback on Forging Ahead, the Authority’s plan to preserve transit access and quality of service available to transit-critical customers. The public engagement effort, now underway and running through December, includes a series of virtual public meetings, a public hearing, a team of Community Liaisons to gather feedback directly from riders, and an online comment form for customers to engage with the T. The T wants to hear from transit customers about the service people are using now, how often, and what their transit priorities are in order to shape the T’s upcoming decision about which transit-critical services to prioritize and protect, and which may need to be cut back until ridership and revenues return.

“Equity demands that the MBTA focus its available resources on those who depend on us most for frequent and reliable service,” said MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak.  “It’s critical we hear from our customers and stakeholders on the services that they need now or will need soon. This input will inform our efforts to identify core essential services – the buses, trains, vans, and boats that serve transit-critical populations and communities that rely on transit – and to realign service by prioritizing and preserving those services. This means we will need to reduce services where we have very few passengers, or are operating near-empty trains, and invest those savings into protecting the core essential services.”

The MBTA initiated Forging Ahead public engagement as part of its response to low ridership on some modes, increased ridership on several routes, potentially long-term changes in service demand, and a projected budget gap resulting from the pandemic. On November 9, the MBTA will announce which services will be prioritized and protected and which will have proposed changes in service, after which the public meetings and public hearing will take place. These service changes will generally not take effect until spring or summer of 2021.

“Given the continuing pandemic and economic dislocation, T ridership on some routes and services may not return to pre-COVID levels for a long time,” said Transportation Secretary and CEO Stephanie Pollack. “MassDOT and the MBTA are actively searching for other ways to replace lost fare revenue, such as using flexible federal dollars to minimize the operating budget impacts. But using limited resources to operate underutilized trains, ferries, and buses is not a responsible use of the money provided to the MBTA by riders, communities, and taxpayers.”

Customers are encouraged to go online and provide feedback here(https://mbta.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_9XgJkYTrL6aySNL) and/or to participate in any of eleven virtual public meetings, including an Official Public Hearing, where they can provide input and ask questions of MBTA officials. Each meeting will focus on a specific community region within the MBTA’s service area. Meeting details are available at mbta.com/ForgingAhead.

Additionally, the MBTA has established a team of Community Liaisons that will be reaching out to communities directly impacted by proposed service changes for input and feedback. MBTA community liaisons will schedule in-person, phone, or online meetings with individuals, local municipalities, or neighborhood organizations to provide information and seek community feedback. Liaisons will also interact directly with customers at stations, platforms, and bus stops.

Following this period of individual comments from MBTA customers, public engagement, and ongoing discussions with the Fiscal and Management Control Board (FMCB), final decisions on protecting essential services and making changes to underutilized services will be made in December and implemented largely in the spring and summer of 2021. Service changes made in response to substantial recent ridership losses will not be permanent and changes to modes or routes taking place in 2021 will be reconsidered based on the status of the State of Emergency, commuting and travel trends, and ridership and fare revenue recovery in 2021 and beyond.

Accommodations:

All meetings are accessible to people with disabilities and those with limited English proficiency. Accessibility accommodations and language services will be provided free of charge, upon request, as available. Such services include documents in alternate formats, translated documents, and interpreters (including American Sign Language). For more information or to request a reasonable accommodation and/or language services, please contact the MBTA Community Liaisons at publicengagement@mbta.com.

For more information, visit mbta.com/forgingahead, or connect with the T on Twitter @MBTA, Facebook /TheMBTA, or Instagram @theMBTA.


From Mayor McGee’s office: The Lynn Public Health Department has confirmed that as of today, the number of active, confirmed positive COVID-19 cases is 529 with 68 new cases today. 5,025 Lynn residents have recovered and 123 have died. The total number of confirmed positive COVID-19 cases in Lynn since March 21, 2020, including those who have died and recovered, is 5,677. Please visit the City of Lynn COVID-19 Data Dashboard which is updated daily.

Stop the Spread Initiative Testing have been extended until December 31st

  • Fallon Ambulance offers testing at the following locations. Walk up Only:
    • Parking lot at Lynn English High School
      • Mon – Sat from 11:00am until 5:00pm

o    Parking Lot behind Fire Station at 725 Western Ave, off of Federal Street

  • Mon – Sat 12:00pm-6:00pm

o    Residents who have been tested for COVID-19 through Fallon Ambulance can call 617-765-0176 with any questions related to your COVID-19 test results.

  • Call Lynn Community Health Center (781)-581-3900 to make a COVID-19 test appointment at 9 Buffum Street location

Please visit http://www.ci.lynn.ma.us/covid19/resources.shtml#p7GPc1_2 for more information on how you can get a free COVID-19 test in the City of Lynn until December 31st.

We will continue to provide regular updates on COVID-19 through the City website (www.lynnma.gov), social media, and the Smart 911 emergency notification system (sign up at www.smart911.com).

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Lynn Community Television is here to provide the Lynn community with access to express their First Amendment Rights via broadcast media. View all posts by lynntvorg

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