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Local News Parish News

St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper Announces Decision on 2021 Mardi Gras Parades

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From St. Tammany Parish Government:

St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper announced today that 2021 Mardi Gras Parades will not roll in St. Tammany. The decision was finalized early Thursday, after consultation with Dr. Charles Preston, St. Tammany Parish Coroner, St. Tammany Parish Sheriff Randy Smith, local fire districts, local police departments and a consensus of local mayors.

“This decision was made after much discussion and thoughtful deliberation. We have taken in to consideration the health, safety and welfare of our citizens and the fact that we remain in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic with numbers continuing to rise,” Cooper said. “We want to discourage any event that will draw large crowds and possibly endanger the health of our citizens or possibly put our first responders at risk. I want to thank every leader within our Parish who participated in this conversation. I will continue to do what is right to balance the health of our community with the health of our economy.”

Cooper hosted two conference calls with the above-mentioned parties on separate occasions to discuss the 2021 Mardi Gras season.

Local News

St. Tammany Parish Library Modifies Hours Due To Return To Phase Two

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From St. Tammany Parish Library:

ST. TAMMANY- The St. Tammany Parish Library’s Causeway, Covington, Madisonville, Mandeville, Slidell and South Slidell Branches will open with adjusted hours while continuing to offer curbside service from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday beginning Wednesday, December 2, due to Louisiana’s new phase two restrictions. The Abita Springs, Bush, Folsom, Lacombe, Lee Road and Pearl River Branches will offer curbside service and computer use by appointment from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday beginning Wednesday, December 2.

Library users who wish to use curbside service can place holds via the library website, www.sttammanylibrary.org/; the library iOS app, STPL Mobile; or by calling the branch of their choice to request curbside pick-up service. These requests can include books, audiobooks and DVDs. The Abita Springs Branch, 71683 Leveson St., can be reached at (985) 893-6285. The Bush Branch, 81597 L.A. 41, can be reached at (985) 886-3588. The Causeway Branch, 3457 U.S. 190, Mandeville, can be reached at (985) 626-9779. The Covington Branch, 310 W. 21st Ave., can be reached at (985) 893-6280. The Folsom Branch, 82393 Railroad Ave., can be reached at (985) 796-9728. The Lacombe Branch, 28027 U.S. 190, can be reached at (985) 882-7858. The Lee Road Branch, 79213 U.S. 40, can be reached at (985) 893-6284. The Madisonville Branch, 1123 Main St., can be reached at (985) 845-4819. The Mandeville Branch, 844 Girod St., can be reached at (985) 626-4293. The Pearl River Branch, 64580 L.A. 41, can be reached at (985) 863-5518. The Slidell Branch, 555 Robert Blvd., can be reached at (985) 646-6470. The South Slidell Branch, 3901 Pontchartrain Dr., can be reached at (985) 781-0099.

Downloadable eBooks, audiobooks, movies, TV shows and magazines are available anytime. For more information, visit www.sttammanylibrary.org/library-apps/.

Checked out library materials may be returned during this time. No overdue fines are currently being charged.

ABOUT STPL: The St. Tammany Parish Library has been serving the citizens of St. Tammany Parish for seventy years. Our twelve branches offer over 542,000 loanable items including books, CDs, DVDs, audiobooks and magazines. The library’s website offers 24/7 access to downloadable audio and eBooks, music downloads, research tools, magazines and newspapers. Our programs and services are designed to meet resident’s cultural, informational, educational and recreational needs.

Local News Parish News

A Message From the Parish President: COVID Update

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from St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper at STPgov.org:

Good Afternoon,

I want to wish all of you a safe and Happy Thanksgiving. As I said in my statement early last week, we know these holidays are going to be different due to COVID-19. Based on the Governor’s announcement yesterday of a move to a modified Phase 2, we now have some idea of just how different.

The State of Louisiana is facing an increase that, if not addressed, could lead to further increases and strains on our hospitals. We are back to flattening another curve. St. Tammany Parish’s Percent Positivity Rate como utilizar la pastilla de viagra berkeley essays college confidential alprazolam news ipb viagra samples go to site apa citation dissertation abstract turabian annotated bibliography format propecia versus finasteride https://awakenedhospitality.com/buy/is-it-ok-to-take-viagra-at-18/30/ academic poster printing staples abortion pro life argumentative essay reducing prison overcrowding essay go site click here https://dsaj.org/buyingmg/does-synthroid-cause-insomnia/200/ cialis sirve para durar mas here free civil right movement essay critical essay in cold blood master's thesis page length go engineer song essayons https://aaan.org/indications/prednisone-to-improve-ovarian-response/27/ how do you see yourself in 10 years essay https://projectathena.org/grandmedicine/how-effective-is-celexa-versus-lexapro/11/ breaking barriers essay contest winners robert martinson what works essay essay on durga puja of west bengal go here glass menagerie research paper ap lang 2010 synthesis essay examples is above five percent for the last two reported weeks. For the week of 11/5- 11/11 we stand at 6.20 % and for the week of 11/12- 11/18, reported today, we stand at 8.10%. With this information in-hand, it is evident that in addition to asking citizens to wear their masks, physically distance, and avoid large gatherings with people from outside their own households, we can add that we should avoid the scheduling of public events and festivities that will draw large numbers of people. Hopefully by discouraging such events we will see a stabilization of our numbers.

The Governor has provided a synopsis of the major changes to Louisiana’s COVID-19 restrictions here. In addition, the St. Tammany Economic Recovery and Resiliency Advisory Council has updated our Live Safe. Work Safe. Shop Safe. Action Plan to reflect these changes. You may view it here.

I again want to thank Dr. Charles Preston for joining me to provide a video message urging best preventative practices during the holiday season. You may see and share both messages here: President Cooper PSA , Dr. Preston PSA .

I continue to work to balance the health of our community with the health of our economy, and I ask each and every one of you to join me in appealing to every single citizen to continue to work to achieve this balance by taking the steps necessary to slow the spread of this virus. It is imperative that we take personal responsibility to protect ourselves, one another, and most importantly — the most vulnerable among us.

Should you have questions or if I may be of assistance to you in any way, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Have a safe, happy, and healthy Thanksgiving!

Local News

Statement From St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper on Moving to Phase 3

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Statement from St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper:

“Moving to Phase 3 is the right thing to do for us at this time, and we appreciate the Governor’s decision. I want to thank him for his for his continued leadership and his consideration of my formal request, as well as the resolutions put forth by the St. Tammany Parish Council and the St. Tammany Chamber of Commerce, requesting the ability to move forward. I have faith in our citizens that we will continue to take personal responsibility to do what is necessary to slow the spread and simultaneously support our local businesses. As I have said from the start of our emergency response to this pandemic, I want to balance the health of our community with the health of our economy,” Cooper said.

“We, as a community, have risen to the call, to take personal responsibility to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and to protect the health of our citizens — especially the most vulnerable. We want to begin to resume a sense of normalcy, and to strike the balance for the health of our economy.”

Visit www.stpgov.org for updates.

Local News

St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper Offers Support for Regional Recovery Phases

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From St. Tammany Parish Government:

St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper has penned a personal letter to Governor John Bel Edwards asking him to consider regional implementation of COVID-19 recovery phases, in lieu of the current statewide implementation model. In addition, Cooper’s letter asks that the Governor make the criteria for any Parish to enter Phase 3 available to Parish leaders state-wide so that each region can base their decisions on phased re-openings using these criteria. This letter supports similar appeals to the Governor by the St. Tammany Parish Council as well as the St. Tammany Chamber of Commerce.

“As I have said from the start of our emergency response to this pandemic, I want to balance the health of our community with the health of our economy. St. Tammany has risen to the call, as a community, to take personal responsibility to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and to protect the health of our citizens — especially the most vulnerable. We want to use this momentum to move into the next phase, to increase capacity in our small businesses and our restaurants, while keeping precautions in place so that our economy can begin to robustly recover. I have faith in our citizens that we will continue to take personal responsibility to do what is necessary to slow the spread and simultaneously support our local businesses. We want to begin to resume a sense of normalcy, and to strike the balance for the health of our economy.”

Cooper stresses that he wants safety protocols — wearing a mask in public, physically distancing, and practicing personal hygiene — to remain in place going forward. According to the Louisiana Department of Health, 90,230 tests have been administered in St. Tammany, with 6,220 total positive cases reported. This is a 6.89% positivity rate.

Visit www.stpgov.org for more updates.

General Local News

STP Public Schools Start Back Next Week

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The St. Tammany Parish Public School System is starting back up next week for the 2020-2021 school year. STPPS shares some frequently asked questions, including information about student grab-&-go meals.

From the St. Tammany Parish Public School System website:

When will school start?
The start of the school year has been delayed until after Labor Day. Students will begin September 8-11 in a staggered approach with “Safe Start Days” where one-fourth of students will report to school each day based on the first letter of their last name. On September 14, students will begin their regular school schedule, whether it is distance learning, hybrid, or in-person at that time. All 56 schools including the STPPS Virtual School will follow this calendar. To view our updated 2020-2021 school year calendar, click here.

Where can I learn more about the STPPS Virtual School?
To learn more about the STPPS Virtual School, visit www.stpsb.org/virtual.

How do I register my child for the STPPS Virtual School or a traditional brick-and-mortar school?
Students enrolling in STPPS for the first time and students transferring to the Virtual School from another STPPS school can register online.

Can I register my child for the STPPS Virtual School after the deadline?
Yes. Students can be registered after the deadline.

Read more FAQ’s from STPPS here: http://www.stpsb.org/coronavirus/faq.html

Grab-&-Go Meals Available for Virtual & Hybrid Students

Drive-thru pick up of Grab & Go meals will be available for students enrolled in the STPPS Virtual School and students in the hybrid model on days they are not on campus in person and are participating in distance learning at home. At this time, under Louisiana Phase 2, students enrolled in traditional brick-and-mortar schools in grades 6-12 would be in the hybrid learning model.

Parents/caregivers MUST complete and submit a meal consent form for each child and select a pick-up location prior to picking up Grab & Go meals for the first time.

Complete the Grab & Go Meal Consent Form Online

Read more here: http://www.stpsb.org/childnutrition/grab&go.htm

Learn more at www.stpsb.org

Local News

Update from Gov. Edwards on Mandatory Masks and Bar Closures Monday

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Below is an update from the Louisiana Governor’s Office dated July 11, 2020

All indoor gatherings limited to 50 total people to prevent the spread of illness

These are the face masks often used to prevent the spread of Coronavirus. They are used in countries with coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreaks and are worn in hospitals as well as in public. They are not designed to protect the wearer from inhaling airborne bacteria or virus particles and are less effective than respirators, such as N95 or FFP masks. nursetogether.com

Today, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced a mandatory mask requirement for Louisiana and ordered bars in the state closed to on-premises consumption, as the state experiences increasing spread of COVID-19. The Governor also limited indoor social gatherings like wedding receptions, class reunions and parties to 50 total people. With these additional restrictions, Louisiana remains in Phase Two of the Roadmap for a Resilient Louisiana.

The statewide mask mandate, which will allow for parishes without high COVID-19 incidence to opt out if they choose, and bar closures go into effect Monday, July 13 at 12:01 a.m., per a revised Phase Two proclamation signed today. The order will also limit the size of gatherings to 50. The new order is set to expire July 24, 2020, but could be extended.

“Cases in Louisiana continue to increase, including setting a record-high number of new cases reported in one day, today and yesterday. More than two thousand new COVID infections reported each of these days and increased hospitalizations are signs that we continue to go in the wrong direction in our work to control COVID-19 in our state. While I had hoped to avoid going backwards on restrictions, it is obvious that it is necessary to slow the spread of infection in our state, as COVID-19 has spread to every corner, at a level higher than we have previously seen. This is why I am now mandating face coverings statewide and also closing all bars in Louisiana to on-premises consumption, in addition to putting in limits on the size of indoor gatherings,” Gov. Edwards said. “Right now, all Louisianans need to work together to reduce the spread of COVID-19 by wearing their face masks, keeping social distance, washing their hands frequently and staying at home when they are feeling sick. These are reasonable expectations while we fight to reduce the spread of the illness in our state. This approach also gives us the best possible chance to again flatten the curve without moving back to Phase One.”

MASK MANDATE

Credit: CC0 Public Domain

The statewide mask mandate applies to all 64 parishes in Louisiana. However, parishes with a COVID-19 incidence of fewer than 100 cases per 100,000 people for the most recent two-week period for which data is available could choose to opt out of the mandate. Parish presidents do not have to opt out and may choose to keep a mask mandate in place. Currently, only three parishes in Louisiana do not exceed this standard, which will be updated every other week by the Louisiana Department of Health: Grant, Red River and West Feliciana.

The order requires face coverings for everyone ages 8 and older except for the following:

  • Anyone who has a medical condition that prevents the wearing of a face covering
  • Anyone who is consuming a drink or food
  • Anyone who is trying to communicate with a person who is hearing impaired
  • Anyone who is giving a speech for broadcast or to an audience
  • Anyone temporarily removing his or her face covering for identification purposes
  • Anyone who is a resident of a parish without a high COVID incidence that has opted out of the masking mandate

Masks are strongly recommended for children ages 2 to 7.

CLOSURE OF BARS TO ALL ON PREMISES CONSUMPTION

All bars, including those with food permits from the Louisiana Department of Health, will be closed to on-premises consumption. They can operate for curbside takeout or delivery service only.

Since the start of the crisis, Louisiana has identified at least 36 outbreaks, impacting at least 405 people, involving bars, which were actually closed under the Governor’s original Stay at Home order. Public health officials believe going to bars is a higher public health risk than visiting other types of businesses because people are socializing and cannot wear masks when they drink. In addition, young people under the age of 30 make up the largest percentage of new COVID cases in Louisiana.

GATHERING SIZE

The new order also limits the size of social gatherings to 50 people indoors. Outdoor social gatherings are also limited to 50 people if individuals cannot avoid being within six feet of one another.

This crowd size limitation shall not apply to those businesses deemed essential as defined by the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency or any businesses and organizations operating at 50% capacity pursuant to Paragraphs (1) through (6) of Subsection (G) of Section 2 of 83 JBE 2020, including churches and other faith-based organizations.

The 50-person limit will apply to indoor gatherings, like receptions, weddings and others. The changes are based on the advice of public health officials.

Click here to read the proclamation.

Local News

Gov. Edwards Announces Phase 2 Re-Opening

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Today, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced that following continued improvement in Louisiana’s COVID-19 outlook and a significant increase in testing capacity and contact tracing, Louisiana is ready to move to Phase 2 of the White House’s reopening strategy on June 5.

Gov. Edwards will sign the official order for Phase 2 of a Resilient Louisiana by Thursday evening, with guidance being issued to individual industries and businesses via the OpenSafely.la.gov website throughout the week. In Phase 2, churches, places of worship and many more businesses will be able to operate at 50 percent capacity with social distancing, masks for public-facing employees and increased sanitation. In addition, the state strongly recommends that businesses consider offering temperature checks before a person can enter and posting the symptoms of COVID-19 outside with a request that symptomatic individuals not enter.

The Governor was advised by public health experts that Louisiana has seen decreasing reports of COVID-like illness, decreasing new case counts especially as a percentage of tests administered, and decreasing hospitalizations in almost every area of the state. A few areas of concern still exist, but through contact tracing and frequent testing, the state is able to quickly track increases and work to prevent large outbreaks.

  • Click here to view the data from the Office of Public Health used to make the re-opening decision.

Phase 2 in Louisiana will last at least 21 days. Because more businesses will be open to more patrons and because the CDC has clarified that the illness is most likely to spread through the air and not on surfaces, the order will strongly encourage individuals to wear masks whenever they are in public and will recommend that people who enter businesses that are not taking proper precautions consider the risk to their health and their family in doing so.

“The people of Louisiana have done an incredible job flattening the curve here, and I’m thankful for their compliance and hard work. Likewise, the state has matched their efforts by ramping up both testing and contact tracing. All of this has allowed us to get to a place where we can move into Phase 2 on Friday,” Gov. Edwards said. “However, as more people are out and about and occupancy increases and even more businesses operate, members of the public should be cautious as they enter businesses and leave any place that is not taking precautions against the spread of COVID-19, especially if employees interacting with the public are not wearing masks and customers are not being encouraged to do so as well. We know most business owners want to go above and beyond to make their patrons feel safe. I hope the people of Louisiana will support these businesses that are doing the right thing to protect their customers and employees.”

“In addition, people who are at high risk for becoming seriously ill from COVID-19, including those over 65 and those with underlying health conditions, should still Stay at Home unless they are completing essential tasks, such as doctor visits or going to purchase medications, food or other necessary items. Everyone should consider their own risk and the risk of those in their households as they plan their public outings. There are still thousands of active COVID-19 cases in Louisiana and public health experts have increased warnings about asymptomatic people being able to spread the illness unknowingly.”

OVERVIEW OF BUSINESSES THAT CAN OPEN:

Businesses that will be able to open at 50 percent occupancy include:

  • Restaurants, cafes and coffee shops
  • Shopping malls (including food courts, following restaurant guidance)
  • Gyms and fitness centers
  • Barber and beauty shops and nail salons
  • Movie theaters
  • Racetracks (not open to spectators)
  • Museums (including children’s museums), zoos, aquariums (no tactile exhibits)
  • Bars and breweries with LDH food permits
  • Massage establishments, spas, and tattoo establishments (under strict guidance from LDH), esthetician services (under strict guidance from the Cosmetology Board)
  • Pool halls, bowling alleys and skating rinks (children must be accompanied by an adult)
  • Event Centers and wedding venues
  • Outdoor playgrounds and play centers (children must be accompanied by an adult)

Casinos and video poker establishments may open at 50 percent occupancy, but limited to 75 percent of their gaming positions, with spacing to allow for social distancing and with enhanced sanitation. Plans must be submitted to the Gaming Control Board which will issue guidance to these facilities.

Bars and breweries that do not have LDH food permits will be able to open with strict social distancing requirements and patrons seated at 25 percent occupancy.

Arcades and trampoline parks may open under approved plans by the State Fire Marshal, with minors accompanied by parents.

Summer camps were allowed to open with restrictions in Phase One, and additional guidance will be issued. Sleep-away camps are not allowed in Phase Two.

The following businesses remain closed: carnivals, amusement parks, water parks, fairs, contact sports, children’s indoor play centers, theme parks, concert and music halls, and other similar businesses. Live entertainment is not permitted inside any building or indoor function.

The Governor encourages businesses that can allow employees to work remotely to consider doing so, especially if an employee is at high risk for becoming seriously ill from COVID-19 or shares a household with a high risk person.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:                                                

  • Business and faith leaders can visit OpenSafely.la.gov to receive guidance and updates from the State Fire Marshal’s Office and the Louisiana Department of Health. Businesses that require approval of reopening plans will be notified by the State Fire Marshal’s Office or the Louisiana Department of Health.
  • For a guide listing businesses that can be open at any given time, visit gov.louisiana.gov/page/can-this-business-open.
  • Members of the public can continue to get information from the Governor’s office by visiting Coronavirus.la.gov and by texting LACOVID to 67283.
  • Members of the public can continue to get information from the Department of Health by visiting ldh.la.gov/coronavirus.
  • People with general questions about COVID-19 in Louisiana can call 211.