Federal government's July 4 plans in DC go against health guidance, mayor says
From CNN's Nicky Robertson
In a news conference this morning, Washington, DC, Mayor Muriel Bowser said that she has told the Department of Interior that scheduled plans for Fourth of July in the district go against guidance from health officials due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“We know that this is a special event for the Department of the Interior. We communicated to them that we do not think that this is in keeping with the best (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and department of health guidance, but this event will take place entirely on the federal property,” Bowser told reporters.
This morning the Department of Interior announced its plans for Fourth of July this Saturday on the National Mall, which include a 35-minute firework display and a flyover from military branches.
"The National Mall and surrounding areas will remain open and available to the general public for prime viewing of both the Salute to America flyovers and the annual fireworks demonstration," the statement said.
Bowser has repeatedly encouraged DC residents to celebrate the holiday at home this year due to the pandemic.
12:41 p.m. ET, July 1, 2020
More than 100 new cases reported in Pennsylvania county following bars and restaurants reopening
From CNN's Elizabeth Joseph
Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, announced Wednesday morning an additional 110 new coronavirus cases, four new hospitalizations and one Covid-related death.
An investigator will be assigned to look into the cases to determine the potential source of this uptick, Amie Downs, communications director for the Allegheny County Executive, tells CNN.
Covid-19 cases have spiked in Allegheny County in the aftermath of the county's decision to reopen bars and restaurants, Downs told CNN Tuesday.
The numbers have increased dramatically since mid-June, when bars and restaurants were permitted to reopen, she said.
The county has since closed them again to on-site consumption, but cases continue to climb, Downs added.
One thing to note: The aforementioned numbers were released by the county and may not line up exactly in real time with CNN’s database drawn from Johns Hopkins University and the Covid Tracking Project
12:38 p.m. ET, July 1, 2020
Holiday weekend could be “perfect storm” for spike in new cases, health expert says
From CNN Health’s Amanda Watts
As the holiday weekend quickly approaches, an infectious disease doctor said we could be looking at “the perfect storm” for a spike in new cases.
“It's set up a perfect storm: the combination of travel, the combination of reopening —perhaps in some cases, too early — and the combination of people not necessarily following some of these preventive guidelines,” Dr. Joshua Barocas, an infectious disease physician at Boston Medical Center, said during a Wednesday briefing held by the Infectious Diseases Society of America.
Barocas said after Memorial Day, some places around the country saw a spike in cases.
“I'm very concerned, especially given this coming weekend that the same types of spikes, the same types of surges could be seen - not just in the places that are currently experiencing surges, but in places that have already experienced surges and in ones that haven't yet,” he said.
Dr. Ricardo Franco, assistant professor of medicine at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, said “this surge in our prolonged first wave of infections, it's very difficult to predict what might happen and the Fourth of July weekend could play a big role in this.”
Reiterating what Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert, said on Tuesday, Franco said bars are a no-go.
“If you have bars, you have music. If you have music, you want to socialize. And you want to speak louder than usual so you can overcome the background noise.” All those factors can increase the spread, Franco added.
Here are Barocas' recommendations to stay safe this holiday weekend:
Barocas is encouraging people to stick to outdoor activities that don’t require congregating in large groups – things like kicking a ball back and forth, flying a kite or biking.
This weekend it’s especially important that Americans – if they must – congregate with friends and families outdoors and remain physically distant, he said. And above all, “avoid sharing items,” he added.
“I would urge people to not share food or drinks with others outside of your household, this is something we oftentimes forget. Bring your own sunscreen. Bring your own bug spray,” Barocas said.
Wearing a mask is also very important this holiday weekend, Barocas said, and the reason is threefold.
12:27 p.m. ET, July 1, 2020
Cuomo confirms NYC won't restart indoor dining next week
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo confirmed that indoor dining will not resume next week as previously planned.
Cuomo said the restarting of indoor dining will be postponed "until the facts change" and did not give a specific timeline. His confirmation comes hours after New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that indoor dining would be delayed.
This is only for New York City, which is set to enter phase three next week, Cuomo said. Other New York regions in stage three will be allowed to resume indoor dining.
Cuomo said the move to pause comes as compliance to social distancing and other measures are declining.
"Citizen compliance is slipping. That is a fact," Cuomo said. "I get it. I understand it: Been inside a long time, the weather is warm, I miss my friends."
12:11 p.m. ET, July 1, 2020
Miami-Dade County to limit pool hours and alcohol sales at hotels for holiday weekend
From CNN's Tina Burnside
As cases continue to spike, Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Giménez signed an amendment on Tuesday requiring hotels, motels and commercial lodging to restrict pool access and alcohol sales for the Fourth of July weekend, according to a news release from the county.
Here are some of the guidelines:
The amendment will require all lodging establishments to close their pool areas from 8 p.m. each night until 6 a.m. the following morning.
When pools are open, only guests staying in rooms at these establishments may use the pool, and overall capacity will be limited to 50% of the pool deck capacity.
Alcohol will not be permitted for sale or consumption on pool decks prior to 11 a.m. and after 8 p.m.
The county will close the pool and pool deck at any commercial lodging establishments that violate these requirements for the Fourth of July weekend until July 7.
“Recent spikes in Covid-19 cases throughout Miami-Dade County require that we take these measures to tamp the curve,” Giménez said. “While we want everyone to enjoy the Fourth of July Weekend, we must safeguard our community’s public health. There is no more patriotic an act than protecting the lives of everyone in our County.”
Beaches will remain closed starting Friday through Monday.
12:12 p.m. ET, July 1, 2020
11 people died in New York yesterday from coronavirus, governor says
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said 11 people died in the state from coronavirus on Tuesday. He said that number of deaths is "just about as low as it's ever been" since the pandemic started.
Overall, Cuomo said the state is doing "great" in terms of the key numbers officials are tracking. However, he said, "I feel that there are storm clouds on the horizon" regarding the numbers surging in other parts of the country.
Cuomo noted that the state did about 56,000 tests yesterday, and the positive rate was 1.1%, which is "also good news," he said.
3:28 p.m. ET, July 1, 2020
New York governor to Trump: "Admit you were wrong"
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo slammed President Trump has been "denying the scientific facts" throughout the coronavirus pandemic and demanded the President "admit the threat of the virus."
In a scornful message to President Trump, Cuomo said the first thing Trump must do is "actually tell the truth."
"Admit you were wrong," Cuomo demanded. "It's not an admission: Everybody knows you were wrong. It doesn't cost you anything. At least have the courage to admit what everybody else already knows. You were wrong."
Cuomo also called on the President to wear a mask, saying "You want to take one easy step that will send a powerful message, put a mask on it."
Cuomo criticized Trump's lack of leadership during the pandemic, saying the President ignored the severity of the virus.
"You know what Mr. President? Reality wins. Every time. You don't defeat reality," Cuomo said, adding the Trump has "he has lived in denial"
"He has been denying the scientific facts from day one," Cuomo said.
One the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic in the US, New York is now reporting stable numbers in new coronavirus cases while many other US states are seeing significant increases in cases.
Gov. Cuomo to President Trump: Reality wins every time
11:55 a.m. ET, July 1, 2020
Arizona reports record new high of Covid-19 cases and deaths
From CNN’s Konstantin Toropin
Ahead of Vice President Mike Pence's trip to Arizona today, the state is reporting 4,878 new cases of Covid-19 as well as 88 deaths from the disease over the last 24 hours, state data shows.
Today’s numbers are a new record high for both new daily cases and deaths since the state started posting data publicly in mid-March.
The state’s Department of Health acknowledged the record highs today in a tweet.
“Today Arizona will be reporting record highs for reported new Covid-19 cases and deaths,” the department tweeted.
“The virus is widespread in Arizona,” it added.
The state is also reporting a record high 89% of ICU beds being used by those with the disease.
The previous record highs were 3,591 new cases of Covid-19 on June 23 and 79 daily deaths on June 24.
Pence is traveling to Phoenix today to meet with Gov. Doug Ducey about his state’s recent rise in coronavirus cases. He is expected to speak to the press at 3:35 p.m. ET.
Here is a look at the progression of new Covid-19 cases in the state, according to John Hopkins University data:
3:42 p.m. ET, July 1, 2020
"I'm not sure what more we can do, short of a total shutdown," Arizona mayor says