Kemp Has No Plans to Shut Down State Again

With COVID-19 numbers rising because of increased testing, Governor Brian Kemp said he has no plans to shut down the economy again.

Last week, Kemp toured plants in Gwinnett County and in Columbus, Georgia.

Speaking in Columbus last week, Kemp said because of the shutdown in March and April, Georgia was at a place where it was mandatory businesses were allowed to re-open for the sake of those workers who had been furloughed and for the survival of small businesses.

Kemp noted the purpose of the shut down was to allow the State to ramp up supplies to medical facilities and nursing homes, not to keep the State shut down until the pandemic was over.

“We asked people to help us buy some time to build up our hospital bed capacity and to get our supply network up of hand sanitizer, PPE, ventilators, and all those things we ordered to make sure we could handle a peak in our state. And that’s what they did,” he said. “It was never about keeping our state shut down until the pandemic was over. And if the virus comes back I don’t see us shutting our economy down anymore. We have to figure out how to live with this virus. There’s some very smart people who are doing that every single day, in government, in the private sector and our school systems, and that’s what we’re doing now.  And that’s where we are now. We’re definitely not at the point where the virus is in the rearview mirror.”

In his weekly COVID-19 update last week, the Governor noted the number of positive COVID-19 cases has dropped in Georgia to 8% from 13% June 1st, but he continued to urge wearing masks and practice social distancing.

In Franklin County, since testing began, 187 people have tested positive for the coronavirus out of a population of 23,329.

In that time, there has been one death – an elderly male with underlying health issues and 14 people have been hospitalized.

According to St. Mary’s Healthcare, 10 of those were hospitalized at St. Mary’s Sacred Heart in Lavonia.

In Hart County, there have been 56 confirmed cases out of a population of just over 26,000, no deaths and five hospitalizations, according to the Georgia Department of Public Health.