COVID-19 Local Updates

This story will be updated around the clock with the latest news and information pertaining to the impact of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Richland County. It will serve as a one-stop-shop for updates on schedule changes, announcements from local officials and more.

Wednesday, April 8

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9:35 p.m. -- Mansfield area YMCA offers services to aid in voting

Mansfield Area YMCA we understand that not everyone has access to a printer, envelopes and stamps. To help, Thursday, April 9, 16, 23, voters can drive up to the Y between 9 to 11:30 a.m. and we will bring an application and a stamped addressed envelope directly to your car. Simply fill out the request, drop it in a mail and wait for the Board of Elections to send you an absentee ballot.

*All Applications must be turned in by April 25 at noon and once you receive your ballot and filled it out, it must be post marked by April 27.*

Please let me know if you have any questions. We are always open to ideas to enhance our social responsibility projects as well.

3:22 p.m. -- Crawford Park District parks remain open, Lowe-Volk Nature Center is closed

As of April 7, 2020, all Crawford Park District parks and preserves are open; however, the Lowe-Volk Nature Center will remain closed and all programming is cancelled until May 10, 2020. We will make a determination prior to May 10 about extending, or hopefully shortening, this date.

We have also closed the Nature Playscape at Lowe-Volk Park. With the stay-at-home order: We see you hiking with your family through the trails; we see you meeting up and social distancing from your cars as you chat through windows; we see you casting lines in hopes of catching the “big one”…and we say “Thank You!”

As you continue to utilize your parks, please adhere to the Governor’s social distancing and group gathering guidelines. Before you enjoy one of your great parks, plan ahead as there are no restrooms or drinking water available. We will continue to monitor the situation and make changes as needed. Park staff are still available via phone (419-683-9000) or email jdyer@crawfordpd.org).

Tuesday, April 7

4:30 p.m. -- Ohio Department of Agriculture Director applauds water conservation

The Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) applauds Ohio farmers’ demonstration of voluntary conservation through the overwhelming sign up of H2Ohio best practices to reduce phosphorus in the Maumee River Watershed. Nearly 2000 farmers submitted applications to enroll more than more than 1.1 million acres. This far exceeded expectations for the agricultural portion of the H2Ohio program.

While the rollout of the program was very thoughtfully executed, the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a necessary reevaluation of ODA’s budget for the H2Ohio Initiative. ODA is committed to working within the Administration’s budgetary guidelines and will communicate with farmers the status of H2Ohio going forward based upon those guidelines once they are known.

Monday, April 6

3:08 p.m. -- Section of State Route 39/96 closure should end April 10

State Route 39/96, between Funk Road and Stambaugh Drive, will close Wednesday, April 8 within the City of Shelby corporation limits for a sewer project.

The detour route for motorists is to take SR 39/96 west to SR 96, southwest on SR 96 to SR 598, south on SR 598 to Lincoln Highway, east on Lincoln Highway to SR 314, north on SR 314 to SR 39/96, and reverse.

The road is expected to reopen Friday, April 10, 2020.

2:39 p.m. - Greek Festival postponed due to COVID-19

From the Parish of Sts. Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Church of Mansfield, Ohio:

"We want to let everyone know how much we appreciate the people of Mansfield, Ontario, and surrounding areas coming to the Greek Festival every year. We have made the very difficult decision to postpone our Festival to a new date later on this summer. As soon as we have an idea of when it will be safe for our Festival to be held we will get that date out. In the meantime wishing everyone good health and happiness."

2 p.m. -- Family Life Counseling & Psychiatric Services offers online services

Due to the odd situation that we are all in as a result of COVID-19, Family Life Counseling & Psychiatric Services has been providing online video and telephonic counseling services.

As a mental health and recovery treatment agency, we are concerned about the community's response to our increased level of isolation which may lead individuals into depression, substance use, and many other negative symptoms. Our licensed professionals continue to provide individual counseling services, couple and family therapies, survivor programs, drug and alcohol recovery treatment, and many others.

I've attached a press release to this email and, if you're willing, we would highly appreciate if you let our community know that counseling and therapeutic treatment is available for former, existing, and new clients.

12:11 p.m. -- MRCPL branch locations closing

Mansfield, Ohio - Following the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Richland Public Health, all 9 locations of the Mansfield/Richland County Public Library will remain closed until further notice.

In addition, our First Call 211 lobby walk-in services remain closed as well. First Call 211 phone services will remain open as scheduled for emergency assistance.

Accommodations have been made for all due dates for currently checked-out library materials to be extended past our re-opening. We ask that you do not return any items to local branches until the library re-opens and we have made the final due date extension announcement.

Mansfield/Richland County Public Library is committed to providing online resources and services throughout these branch closures. Resources can be accessed through your MRCPL library card. Patrons can also sign up for eCards at https://www.mrcpl.org/services/front-desk/get-a-digital-services-ecard to begin utilizing these resources at any time. In addition, all branches of MRCPL have enabled 24/7 Wifi services.

As the public health situation changes hourly, we commit to keeping you informed of any changes to our scheduled events. Please check our social media pages and https://www.mrcpl.org/covid-19 for updates.

Since Mansfield Richland County Public Library's opening in 1889, the first 700 books, and the first set of the Congressional Record, the library has been a source for free access to knowledge, information, and resources in Mansfield. That will never change. We are a bridge connecting people to the knowledge and resources they might not otherwise have access to.

In the global and digital age, we also recognize the importance of being rooted in our community offering innovative resources, programming, and events specifically for our customers. Through our interactive website, www.mrcpl.org, we are now able to provide access to resources for our library card holders 24/7 in addition to our 9 traditional locations. MRCPL is a center for people of all ages to come together to have fun, learn, grow, craft, seek knowledge and understanding, connect, and engage!

11:04 a.m. -- Crawford County Recycling Center closed

As of April 6, per the director of the Solid Waste District, the recycling center is now closed until further notice. We will not be accepting recyclables at the center. Any recyclables left on the ground will be thrown in the trash dumpster. Trailers will be returned when the Governor's order is lifted.

9:47 a.m. -- Section of State Route 254 in Richland County to close April 13 for culvert replacement

State Route 545, just south of Pittenger Road, will close Monday, April 13 for a culvert replacement.

The detour route for southbound motorists is SR 545 to SR 96, west on SR 96 to SR 13, south on SR 13 to US 30, east on US 30 to SR 545, and reverse for northbound motorists.

The road is expected to reopen Monday, April 20, 2020.

9:46 a.m. -- U.S. 30 Westbound exit ramp to State Route 39 to close April 13 in Mansfield

The US 30 westbound exit ramp to State Rout 39 northbound will be closed at night from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. ONLY beginning Monday, April 13 to complete relocation work.

The detour route for motorists headed to SR 39 northbound will continue on US 30 westbound to the Trimble Road exit, turn left onto Trimble Road and re-enter US 30 eastbound, then take the US 30 eastbound exit ramp to SR 39.

The ramp is scheduled to reopen Friday, May 1, 2020.

9:45 a.m. -- Section of State Route 19 to close in Crawford County April 13

State Route 19, just south of Rettig Road (Township Road 169), will close Monday, April 13 in Crawford County for a culvert replacement.

The detour route for northbound motorists is SR 19 to SR 288, west on SR 288 to SR 61, north on SR 61 to SR 309, north on SR 309 to SR 19, and reverse for southbound motorists.

The road is expected to reopen Friday, April 17, 2020.

9:44 a.m. -- Section of Ohio 603 to close April 13 in Richland County

State Route 603, between Pleasant Valley Road and State Route 95, will close Monday, April 13 for a maintenance repair project on a retaining wall.

The detour route for motorists headed northbound on SR 603 will travel east on SR 95 to SR 39, northwest on SR 39 to SR 603, and reverse for southbound motorists.

The road is expected to reopen Thursday, May 28, 2020.

9:42 a.m. -- Pioneer Career & Technology Center sets April 20 remote board meeting

The Pioneer Career and Technology Center Board of Education will hold its next meeting on Monday, April 20 at 7 p.m. remotely.

COVID-19 is a respiratory disease that can result in serious illness or death and can easily spread from person to person between individuals who are in close contact with each other (within about 6 feet) or through the touching of a surface that has the virus on it then touching one’s own mouth, nose or eyes. In response, the Governor and the 133rd General Assembly of the Ohio Legislature have declared a state of emergency with respect to the spread of the novel coronavirus.

In order to enable the Board of Education to continue with District operations during the public health emergency and In accordance with the provisions of HB 197, the Board may meet telephonically or through other electronic means, including conference calls or other meeting technology to conduct the public business of the public body while emergency orders of the federal and/or state government are in effect limiting public gatherings. Such meetings will be property noticed to the public through the established and usual method of notice to the public.

In an effort to provide an opportunity for attendance by the public, news media, and any other person that has requested notification of meetings, access will be made available to the extent reasonably possibly and feasible. The means of technology and information on how to access the meeting as a member of the public will be made available via the District’s website. The Board intends to fully honor its obligations under the Open Meetings Act.

Friday, April 3

4 p.m. -- Galion Spring Break will halt school work and meals being served

Due to spring break next week, the Galion City School District will be unable to serve meals to students and will not be assigning any schoolwork.

The school district would like to thank all of the cooks, drivers, aides, and any of the other employees who are putting in the time and the effort to make sure that the students of Galion are fed.

The same group of members is thoroughly looking forward to getting to handout meals to students beginning again on April 13.

Please continue to follow us on Facebook and monitor our website for updates.

https://www.facebook.com/galioncityschools

https://www.galionschools.org/

3:48 p.m. -- Crestline Schools gathering information for preschool and kindergarten students for 2020-21 school year

CRESTLINE - Although schools are closed due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Crestline Exempted Village School District is collecting contact information for parents interested in enrolling in PreSchool and Kindergarten for the 2020-2021 school year. Screening dates are not in place currently, but the district is distributing pre-registration forms to interested families.

On April 6, interested parents can come to the Crestline K-12 Building to pick up a form along with instructional packets. Parents may also contact Elementary Principal, Julie Murphy-Theodore, (419 683-5351 ext 45850 or murphy.julie@crestline.k12.oh.us), and provide the following information:

Child’s name

Address

Child’s Birthdate

Parent(s) name

Email or Phone number

Kindergarten and PreSchool screening dates and times will be shared at a later date. Pre-registration forms can also be downloaded from the district website and Facebook page.

2:48 p.m. -- Richland County Children Services Board to host emergency meeting April 6

The Richland County Children Services Board will hold an emergency board meeting on Monday, April 6, at 3:30 p.m. for purposes of discussing the Agency’s COVID-19 response policy.

A conference call number is being utilized so that social distancing can be followed. To call into the meeting, interested individuals should dial the conference call number 425-436-6341. When prompted, enter access code 858603.”

Thank you for your understanding and continued support.

11:30 a.m. -- Richland Soil & Water Conservation District postpones APril 14 meeting

Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic, Richland Soil and Water Conservation District (Richland SWCD) has postponed the Tuesday, April 14 Rain Garden and Barrel Workshop.

The Richland SWCD Spring Pond Fish Sale pick up originally scheduled for Friday, April 24 has been cancelled. The next pond fish sale will be held in the Fall. Orders are due by Friday, Oct. 9 and pick up is Friday, Oct. 16.

For more information on Richland SWCD programs and services, please visit www.richlandswcd.net or call 419-747-8686.

Thursday, April 2

11:30 a.m. -- Richland Soil and Water Conservation District announces cancellations, postponements

-- The Pond Fish Sale hosted by Richland Soil and Water Conservation District with an order by date of April 17 has been cancelled. 

-- The Rain Garden and Barrel Workshop with Richland Soil and Water Conservation District originally scheduled for April 14 has been postponed.

-- The Clear Fork FFA Alumni and Richland Soil and Water Conservation District Tree Seedling Sale originally scheduled for April 3 and 4 is cancelled.

Wednesday, April 1

5:05 p.m. -- Galion Kindergarten screening postponed

Kindergarten screening for the Galion City School District was originally scheduled for April 22 and 23, but will be postponed until further notice.

As soon as new dates are set, that information will be released.

2:41 p.m. -- CACY services remain open

CACY services are still in full operation as an essential mental health service for Richland County. Although our office lobby is currently closed to public walk-ins, we are happy to communicate with you via email or telephone. For a quicker response, please email any prevention educator directly or call the main telephone number (419-774-5683) and leave a message. For general questions, please email andersont@cacyohio.org.

We have put together several online lessons/ resources for youth as well as parenting support. See the attached handout with a list of resources which will be available upon request.

9:56 a.m. -- Playground equipment off-limits at Mansfield parks

Effective April 1, all playground equipment within the Mansfield City Parks is closed to public use. Our Parks will remain open for the use of the greenspace. We encourage you not to use the playground equipment and be mindful of hand rails, and picnic tables.

Activities and events may change as we continue to evaluate what is in the best interest of public health. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the Parks office at 419-522-9801.

We will continue to monitor this situation as Governor DeWine and the Ohio Department of Health provide daily updates. Any changes to this policy will be release immediately to members of the public.

We thank you for your patience and we urge everyone to take their own precautionary measures to ensure the well-being of your health and the entire Mansfield community.

9:27 a.m. -- President Trump approves Ohio disaster declaration

FEMA announced that federal emergency aid has been made available for the state of Ohio to supplement state, tribal and local recovery efforts in the areas affected by the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic beginning on January 20, 2020 and continuing.

Public Assistance Federal funding is available to the state, tribal and eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency protective measures (Category B), including direct federal assistance under Public Assistance, for all areas in the state of Ohio affected by COVID-19 at a federal cost share of 75 percent.

James K. Joseph has been named as the Federal Coordinating Officer for federal recovery operations in the affected area. Additional designations may be made at a later date if requested by the state and warranted by the results of further assessments.

Tuesday, March 31

4:57 p.m. -- Ohio updates application process for energy assistance programs

The Ohio Development Services Agency (Development) and Community Action Commission of Erie, Huron & Richland Counties, Inc., (CACEHR), are working to help keep Ohioans safe during this time of emergency. Recently, Governor Mike DeWine declared a state of emergency regarding COVID-19, and Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton, M.D., MPH has issued orders to limit social interactions to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Effective immediately, Ohioans who are enrolling in the Percentage of Income Payment Plan Plus (PIPP) for the first time, applying for Home Energy Assistance Winter Crisis Program, or have limited income, are no longer required to visit a local Energy Assistance Provider in order to complete an application. CACEHR Appointments may be completed over the phone during the scheduled appointment time rather than face-to-face.

Ohioans can visit www.energyhelp.ohio.gov to start their application and upload the required documents prior to their appointment. If a you do not have access to the internet and/or cannot upload your documentation, the local Energy Assistance Provider can complete your application over the phone. For a list of required documentation or to schedule an appointment call, 419-901- 9539.

“Working with our local providers, we have been providing Ohio families with the support they need to manage their energy bills, and now this support is even more important,” said Lydia Mihalik, Director of the Ohio Development Services Agency. “The online application, in a normal scenario, makes it easier to apply and reduces the length of an in-person appointment, but now it is providing a bridge to assistance during an incredibly difficult time.”

Development will also extend the Winter Crisis Program (WCP) until May 1, 2020 to align with the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio’s extended Winter Reconnect Order and the regular Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) will be extended until June 1, 2020.

Development’s Interactive Voice Response phone lines will not be available, however Ohioans may continue to call 1-800-282-0880 and select option 2, to be transferred to their local Energy Assistance Provider.

The Home Energy Assistance Winter Crisis Program helps income-eligible Ohioans pay their heating bills and can assist with fuel tank placement, fuel tank testing and furnace repair. Ohioans must have a gross income at or below 175% of the federal poverty guidelines to qualify for WCP and HEAP assistance. For a family of four the annual income must be at or below $45,062.50.

Ohioans must have a gross income at or below 150% of the federal poverty guidelines to qualify for PIPP. For a family of four the annual income must be at or below $38,625.00.

Ohioans that have a regulated utility and have been issued a disconnect notice are eligible for a one-time WCP benefit if they have not already received a WCP or regular HEAP benefit.

For more information about the features of the Winter Crisis Program locally and what is needed to apply, contact Tim Brown, tbrown@cacehr.org or Ike Hickman, ihickman@cacehr.org at 419-626-4320. Additional information can also be found at www.energyhelp.ohio.gov or by calling 1-800-282-0880.

1:19 p.m. -- Columbia Gas of Ohio supportings Richland County United Way

Contributing to local charities, American Red Cross through NiSource Charitable Foundation

Columbia Gas of Ohio announced today that it has committed to supporting COVID-19 relief efforts in Northeast Ohio through local contributions from the NiSource Charitable Foundation.

Local organizations receiving donations include the Elyria Salvation Army, Second Harvest Food Bank of North Central Ohio, Lorain County United Way, Richland County United Way, Alliance Community Pantry and The Greater Cleveland Food Bank.

This announcement is in addition to a $275,000 contribution to local chapters of the American Red Cross in Ohio, part of an overall donation from the NiSource Charitable Foundation for $1 million across the company’s seven-state territory.

These organizations are among a broader list of local charities across the state that Columbia Gas is supporting, to help provide critical care to those who are facing significant challenges during the COVID-19 health crisis.

“During this heightened time of concern, we want our customers to know that their safety and wellbeing is of utmost importance to us,” said Dan Creekmur, president of Columbia Gas of Ohio. “Local charities across the state are helping our most vulnerable neighbors who are struggling to meet their basic needs. We are proud to be one of many community partners who are helping to provide Ohioans with relief during this pandemic.”

The NiSource Charitable Foundation is the charitable foundation supported by NiSource Inc. (NYSE: NI), the parent company of Columbia Gas.

For full details of the company’s COVID-19 response, visit ColumbiaGasOhio.com/COVID-19.

11:59 a.m. -- Social Security benefits will be paid on time

Andrew Saul, Commissioner of Social Security, reminds the public that Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefit payments will continue to be paid on time during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The agency also reminds everyone to be aware of scammers who try to take advantage of the pandemic to trick people into providing personal information or payment via retail gift cards, wire transfers, internet currency, or by mailing cash, to maintain Social Security benefit payments or receive economic impact payments from the Department of the Treasury.

“Social Security will pay monthly benefits on time and these payments will not be affected by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Commissioner Saul said. “I want our beneficiaries to be aware that scammers may try to trick you into thinking the pandemic is stopping or somehow changing your Social Security payments, but that is not true. Don’t be fooled.”

The Department of the Treasury will soon provide information about economic impact payments under the recently enacted law, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, or CARES Act. Treasury, not Social Security, will be making direct payments to eligible people. Please do not call Social Security about these payments as the agency does not have information to share.

The agency continues to direct the public to its online self-service options whenever possible. Local offices are closed to the public but are available by phone. People can find their local field office phone number by accessing the Field Office Locator.

To allow available agents to provide better phone coverage, the agency is temporarily changing the National 800 Number hours starting on Tuesday, March 31, 2020. The hours will change from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. local time to 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. local time. The agency is experiencing longer than normal wait times on the 800 Number and asks the public to remain patient, use its online services at www.socialsecurity.gov, or call their local office.

Please visit the agency’s COVID-19 web page at www.socialsecurity.gov/coronavirus/ for important information and updates.

11:45 a.m. -- NECIC closing office for COVID-19

NECIC will make the stand to be a part of the solution, and close its offices until further notice. In light of the COVID-19 situation, we want to be sensitive to the needs of our employees as well as our community members. Our building may not be available, but our services still are! All staff, however, will remain available during regular working hours via phone, email, and video conference meetings, to meet your needs during these unprecedented times.

We also encourage jobseekers to apply on our website at www.temp2higher.org or call our office at 419-522-1611. We will continue to find work for our jobseekers.

The best way to stay informed is www.necic-ohio.org or our Facebook page.

Monday, March 30

4 p.m. -- Richland County JFS offering one-time assistance payments

Richland County Job and Family Services will implement a COVID-19 supportive service payment to assist qualifying families with non-recurring, one-time benefit assistance for basic needs such as rent, mortgage and utility costs.

"With the knowledge available to our agency at the time and with the best intentions, Richland County Job and Family Services are implementing these changes to assist those affected by COVID-19, specifically," Executive Director Sharlene Neumann said.

Eligible applicants will include the following: a) A family with a minor child (under the age of 18 or 18 and attending high school); or b) A pregnant individual; and c) A family or pregnant individual with an income at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level; and d) A family in which a parent or legal guardian of a minor child or pregnant individual has been recently unemployed as a result of COVID-19 (the employer has closed its facility; the employer has reduced staff until further notice; ineligible for unemployment/employer not covered; self-employment impacted by the virus).

An eligible family may receive up to $1,500 in supportive service benefits. A pregnant individual may receive up to $1,000 in supportive service benefits.

Benefits will take the form of vouchers to cover rent, mortgage or utility payments up to the maximum amount allowable or actual costs, whichever is lower.

Applicants for the COVID-19 supportive service payment program must complete a PRC application, provide verification of “unemployed status” (letter from employer, etc.) and copies of Social Security cards for all household members.

The COVID-19 supportive service payment program will be effective immediately and will be in effect through May 31, 2020 (March, April, May), contingent upon the availability of funding.

All federal and state laws applicable to the prevention, retention, contingency (PRC) program must be met.

The COVID-19 supportive service payment program will not count toward the county PRC limits of one event (or bundled event) per 12-month period and the maximum per 12-month period dollar amount (varies based on services).

However, families/pregnant individuals receiving COVID-19 supportive service payments cannot receive general PRC benefits while participating in the  program.

Reisdents can apply by downloading the application online at www.rcjfs.net (Under the COVID-19 tab. The application will be accepted by MAIL, DROPBOX, FAX number 419 774-5830 or email at Richland during Richland-documents@jfs.ohio.gov Walk-ins are discouraged due to the COVID-19.

12:32 p.m. -- Richland County Children Services Board to meet March 31

The Richland County Children Services Board will meet Tuesday, March 31, at 3:30 p.m. A conference call number is being utilized so that social distancing can be followed.

To call into the meeting, interested individuals should dial the conference call number 425-436-6341. When prompted, enter access code 858603. The system will then ask you to state your name, after which you will officially have joined the meeting. Thank you for your understanding and continued support.

12:30 p.m. -- Housing authority to distribute applications as requested

Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Housing Authority will distribute applications to the public as requested. An application can be requested by phone, email, in writing, fax etc. EMAIL Requests to: mansfieldmha@embarqmail.com.

Application request forms will be placed at the drop box for families to complete stating how they would like the application to be sent (mail, email or fax).

When families call to request an application the PHA will ask the family what method they would like to receive the application. The applications will be mailed, faxed or emailed as soon as possible.

9:53 a.m. -- BWC waives employer program requirements amid COVID-19 concerns

Due to the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) on Ohio’s business community, the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation (BWC) is waiving several requirements for employers participating in programs that lower their premiums as a reward for creating safer workplaces and doing BWC business online and on time.

“This is one more way we can answer Governor Mike DeWine’s call for state agencies to help Ohioans and the business community through this difficult time,” said BWC Administrator/CEO Stephanie McCloud. “We’re looking at everything we do, and I’m sure more action will follow in the coming days and weeks.”

BWC is waiving all safety education and training requirements for this policy year — July 1, 2019, to June 30, 2020, for private employers; calendar year 2019 for public employers — for participants in the following programs:

Drug Free Safety Program.

EM Cap Program.

Grow Ohio.

Industry Specific Safety Program.

One Claim Program.

Policy Activity Rebate Program.

Discounts offered through these programs will be applied automatically. Additionally, the annual report deadline submission for Drug Free Safety Program participants has been extended to June 1, 2020. More on these programs can be found at bwc.ohio.gov.

The waivers follow Governor Mike DeWine’s signing Friday of Ohio House Bill 197 granting the state numerous provisions designed to mitigate COVID-19’s impact on Ohioans. It also follows BWC’s announcement last week that its private and public employer members could defer their monthly premium installment amounts due for March, April, and May this policy year until June 1, 2020, at which time the matter will be reconsidered.

For more on COVID-19 as it relates to BWC, visit this Frequently Asked Questions page. For the latest on COVID-19, visit the Ohio Department of Health website coronavirus.ohio.gov, or call 1-833-4-ASK-ODH.

9:50 a.m. -- Richland County Children Services remains open

Our daily lives have changed recently because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Gov. Mike DeWine has implemented a 3-week spring for students and issued a Stay-at-Home order for Ohio residents in an effort to control the spread of the virus.

Many organizations have temporarily ceased or reduced operations, and new laws have been enacted to ease the effects on displaced workers and business owners. One thing that hasn’t changed, however, is the essential work being done in our community by the employees of Richland County Children Services (RCCS). 

“We are open and we’re taking calls. Our caseworkers are investigating reports and operating out in the community,” said Nikki Harless, RCCS Executive Director.

The vast majority of children involved in child welfare cases live at home. Parents are often ordered to participate in certain programs (or they request to do so voluntarily), while caseworkers make regular visits to check on the situation in the home to ensure child safety.

RCCS will likely experience staffing challenges in the coming months due to COVID-19, and so a plan has been enacted to ensure that there are still “eyes on” children regularly. 

“We have put procedures in place to ensure the safety of both our clients and our staff,” Harless said.

Extra precautions include caseworkers taking their temperature before leaving their homes and calling clients before visits to find out if anyone in the family is ill or may have been exposed to the virus. 

While the safety of children must still be verified, alternative methods such as social distancing and teleconferencing are being utilized whenever it is appropriate to do so.

The Agency has also reduced the number of staff operating in the building from 96 to 25 at any one time and has adopted strict cleaning and sanitizing protocol for all common areas. Visitation between children and their parents at the Agency has been restricted to phone calls and Skype/FaceTime technology in order to limit exposure to our clients and staff.

“This a stressful time for everyone, especially parents. We want them to know that they’re not alone and that there are organizations and resources available to help them. We are all in this together to help prevent child abuse and neglect,” Harless said.

That includes neighbors and other family members who may suspect that something is not right.

“Many people are uncomfortable making a report to Richland County Children Services, but it is often the first step in addressing the needs of the child and their family. Please help us protect the children in our community by reporting suspected abuse. If you see injuries or bruises, or if you see a child suffering from neglect, please contact us. We’re here to help,” Harless said.

To report child abuse or neglect, please call Richland County Children Services at 419-774-4100. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Saturday, March 28

10:21 p.m. -- Ashland Emergency Management Agency seeks Personal Protective Equipment

Please help get the word out regarding the need for (PPE) Personal Protective Equipment. Any one that can provide even one of theses items, please donate these items to the Ashland County Emergency Management Agency, at 1763 State Route 60,

Ashland, Ohio 44805

Items needed;

1. N-95 Mask

2. Ear loop Masks/Surgical Masks

3. Gloves/ sterile/ non-sterile

4. Goggles

5. Dispo Gowns

6. Face visors

Please keep items in their original containers

Please deliver these items Monday through Friday from. 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Friday, March 27

4 p.m. -- Honda Indy 500 date moved to Aug. 7-9

INDYCAR has announced that The Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course originally set for Aug. 14 to 16, has been moved to one week earlier on the calendar to Aug. 7 to 9.

This shift is in support of the NTT INDYCAR SERIES’ efforts to run as many of its points championship races as possible in 2020. Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course moving up its date also opens up the summer calendar further for the Indianapolis 500 to run on Aug. 23.

This rescheduled date is subject to the ongoing guidance and mandates of national, state and local authorities regarding public gatherings. The health and safety of all associated with this event will remain the priority of Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

Previously purchased tickets to The Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio will be valid and honored on the rescheduled dates of Aug. 7-9, 2020. Email info@midohio.com for any questions on ticket purchases and additional information."

2:37 p.m. -- Shelby playgrounds closed until further notice 

In compliance with the Governor's Order “public access playgrounds” in Shelby will be closed until further notice.

Within that order, there is allowance for periodic “outdoor activity". However, Social Distance Requirements, as defined by the Ohio Department of Health, are to be strictly obeyed.

The Shelby City Health Department is encouraging citizens to stay at home as much as possible in order to protect and preserve the health and wellbeing of family, friends, and neighbors. The exercise of wisdom and restraint by everyone can be the difference maker in our Community.

- Mayor Steven L. Schag

10:01 a.m. -- ‘Two Days in May’ Canceled Due to COVID-19 Pandemic

The 2020 Two Days in May Conference on Victim Assistance, previously scheduled for May 21 and 22 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center, has been canceled due to the ongoing COVID-19 public health crisis.

Two Days in May is an annual training event where victims’ advocates from around the state receive updates about best practices, trends and developments in the field; network with colleagues who also care about victims; and honor those who are doing exceptional work. More than 1,200 people attended the conference in 2019.

Training alternatives will be announced at a later date.

Thursday, March 26

6:53 p.m. -- Avita Health System accepting medical supply donations

BUCYRUS / GALION / ONTARIO -- Avita Health System has announced it is  accepting donations of needed medical supplies.

Bucyrus, Galion, and Ontario Hospitals are working diligently to conserve and procure personal protective equipment  in an effort to keep patients, employees, and the community safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Avita’s staff is  available to coordinate the donation of items from individuals or organizations.

To adhere to the Ohio Department of Health’s order that requires all Ohioans to stay in their homes to prevent the spread of COVID-19, arrangements can be made for hospital staff to pick-up donations.

There will also be drop-off areas available at our facilities that will allow individuals to donate items without leaving their cars. To make arrangements for pick-up or drop-off of donated items, please send an email to tmartin@avitahs.org or call 419-468-0727.

To maintain staff and patient safety, the condition of donated medical supplies should be new and unopened. Much needed medical items include, but are not limited to:

-- N95 Masks

-- Tie surgical masks

-- Masks

-- Face Shields

-- Gowns

-- Medical coveralls

-- Exam gloves

-- Surgical gloves

-- Hand sanitizer

Avita Health System’s team is dedicated to the health and safety of the community. Avita will continue to monitor hospital operations, assess the needs of the community, and take necessary COVID-19 precautions as the situation develops and new information emerges.

To answer questions and address concerns about COVID-19, Avita’s Coronavirus Information Hotline is available from 8:00 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily at 419-468-0800.

For information about Avita’s latest COVID-19 precautions, visit avitahealth.org.

5:30 a.m. -- Avita Health Systems limiting patient entrances

BUCYRUS / GALION / ONTARIO – To ensure every patient entering Bucyrus, Galion, and Ontario Hospitals is assessed for fever and other COVID-19 symptoms, Avita Health System is limiting patient entrances to one per hospital. This temporary precaution will take effect today and continues until further notice.

The decision to reduce patient entrances to one per hospital is part of a continued effort to protect patients, visitors, employees, medical staff, and the community from COVID-19 exposure and to limit potential spread of the illness.

Avita is assessing every patient that enters the hospital by administering a temperature check and asking screening questions immediately upon entry.

Patients that present to the emergency department with a fever are given a mask, their hands are sanitized, and they are immediately roomed for further medical evaluation.

Patients that present to the hospital for clinic and ancillary services go through the same screening process and may be referred to their ordering physician for additional instructions or evaluation. Avita acknowledges that these precautions are inconvenient for patients and are asking for cooperation to ensure everyone’s protection.

The emergency entrances at Bucyrus and Galion Hospitals will be the only ones to remain open, as well as the main entrance at Ontario Hospital. The East (mall) entrance next to Ontario Hospital will close, but the doors that separate Richland Mall from the hospital

 

Wednesday, March 25

5:09 p.m. -- Richland County Juvenile Court announces restrictions

In response to the COVID-19 health emergency, Richland County Juvenile Court Judge Steve McKinley announced that effective March 24, the Court will remain open to hear only urgent and emergency cases. All other cases shall be continued to a later date. The Court will continue to conduct pretrials and supervision of youth by phone and facetime.

“We are making every effort to protect the health of our Richland County citizens during this emergency, while still providing them with access to juvenile justice in urgent matters,” Judge McKinley said.

Last week McKinley took other precautionary measures including health screening all who enter the building, restrictions to the detention facility, and implementing work-at-home status for certain staff when feasible.

4:30 p.m. -- City of Mansfield delays water meter replacement program

Mansfield Public Works Director David Remy on Wednesday announced the city-wide water meter replacement program has been delayed due to COVID-19.

"In the last several days, city water customers have received in the mail a booklet explaining the new water replacement project the city has embarked on," Remy said in an email.

"While the booklet indicates the project will begin in April and May, those dates have been altered by the current COVID-19 crisis and actual contact of customers and installation has been postponed until all restrictions, imposed by the Ohio Department of Health and the Governor's Office relative to COVID-19, have been lifted.

"Once those restrictions are lifted, the city will put out a notice as to when installation will actually begin. I encourage all customers to read and keep the booklet until installation at your residence or business is complete. While the booklet is intended to explain the installation process and answer as many questions as possible, individuals can still call the utility collection or public works director phone numbers listed in the booklet," Remy said.

2:59 p.m. -- Mansfield police respond to COVID-19 orders

The Mansfield Division of Police would like to take a moment to encourage our community to follow the Governor’s “Stay at Home” order which went into effect this past Monday at 11:59 p.m. This is an unprecedented time in our country’s history and the COVID-19 virus has presented us with challenges we have not faced in our lifetime.

We want you to know that our officers continue to serve the community in a professional manner while performing our duty to serve, while facing the same obstacles that you face. We continue to respond to calls for service and have implemented safeguards to better protect not just our officers from contamination, but the general public as well.

We are following the state of Ohio safety recommendations to wash hands, use sanitizer and clean cruisers to help prevent the spread of this deadly virus. On calls for service, we are practicing “social distancing” as directed by the state of Ohio Health Department.

If a report can be taken over the phone without the officers personally engaging the public, we are doing so. While we are doing business as usual and enforcing laws, it is not our intent to proactively or randomly stop people to ask where they are going. It is our hope that our community realizes the magnitude of this virus and will abide by the emergency safety precautions put into place.

While it is not our primary focus to impose the “Stay at Home” order by the Governor, it is a law and violations can be enforced; however, we prefer to educate rather than cite.

 Officers will not be stopping motorists for the sole purpose of determining compliance with the stay at home order.

 If our officers respond to reports of groups of people congregating or businesses operating outside the requirements of any of the orders, they will use discretion to educate those groups about the importance of complying with the order.

 Each incident will be handled on a case by case basis. As we work to abide by these best practices, we ask for your patience and understanding as well as to abide by the safety measures that have been put into place to combat the spread of COVID-19. Please STAY AT HOME unless it is necessary to go out.

If you do find it necessary to go out, please limit your contact with others and follow preventive measures by washing your hands often and/or using sanitizers. Let’s work together to limit exposures and follow the directives put in place so we can move past this epidemic that is sweeping our world.

2:45 p.m. -- New water meter installation postponed in Mansfield 

In the last several days Mansfield's city water customers have received in the mail a booklet explaining the new water replacement project the city has embarked upon.

While the booklet indicates the project will begin in April and May, those dates have been altered by the current COVID-19 crisis and actual contact of cusmers and installation has been postponed until all restrictions, imposed by the Ohio Department of Health and Governor's Office relative to COVID-19, have been lifted.

Once those restrictions are lifted, the city will put out a notice as to when installation will actually begin.

"I encourage all customers to read and keep the booklet until installation at your residence or business is complete," said Public Works Director Dave Remy.

"While the boklet is intended to explain the installation process and answer as many questions as possible, individuals can still call the Utility Collection or Public Works Director phone numbers listed in the booklet.

2:27 p.m. -- Crawford Park District Board March 26 meeting to be live streamed

The Crawford Park District Board of Park Commissioners special meeting, set for Thursday, March 26 at 10 a.m., will be live streamed via YouTube. You can view it by following the link below. It will be titled “Bd Meeting of the CPD, 3-26-2020.” 

If you wish to view the live stream of the meeting, it is recommended opening the link one-half hour prior to the start of the meeting. For additional information, contact the Crawford Park District office at 419-683-9000.

1:40 p.m. -- Renaissance to offer creative educational activities resources 

As area teachers, students, and families deal with school closures and a unique way of learning for many, the Renaissance Education Department has created the "QuaRENtine Education Initiative" which will offer a variety of educational activities designed with creativity in mind.

The series, coordinated by Renaissance Resident Teaching Artist Dauphne Maloney, is designed to provide a wide range of engaging and fun theatre games, along with writing prompts and exercises, and other activities that foster collaboration, learning and creativity.

Maloney, trained by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., typically conducts in-school workshops for area students, as well as educational workshops hosted by the theatre. The recent closure of Ohio’s schools has meant that many scheduled workshops have been cancelled, in accordance with Governor Mike DeWine’s Executive Order.

“The Renaissance Education Department has been grateful to have had the opportunity to use its resources to provide service to area educators, administrators, parents and students,” Maloney said. “Until recently, the majority of those opportunities has involved face-to-face interaction.

"With the more traditional structure of education changing for many — even if only for a short time — we’d like to continue to be a resource to our educational partners by offering a little bit of fun to add to their daily lessons.”

Beginning Wednesday, March 25, the Renaissance website will provide a collection of writing prompts, as well as improvisational theatre “games.” All the material provided can be used by educators, as well as parents and students. Maloney suggests that the theatre games can also be fun for families looking to break up or enhance a day of traditional, core subject matter.

Material for the website will be updated, and expanded upon, regularly to include new material and resources for other activities and creative exploration.

For more information on Creative Educational Activities Resources or any Renaissance Education programs, visit www.rentickets.org.

12:37 p.m. -- Northwest Ohio Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association debuts new dial-in support groups for caregivers

Family members who are caring for their loved ones with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease now have new ways to gain support starting Friday, March 27.

The Alzheimer’s Association Northwest Ohio Chapter has started a weekly dial-in support group specifically dedicated to caregivers. Telephone support groups provide emotional, educational and social support for caregivers through regularly scheduled meetings. Held via telephone to accommodate individuals who are unable to travel to a meeting site, these groups help participants develop coping methods and encourage them to maintain their personal, physical and emotional health.

“Support groups are a way for caregivers to not feel so alone, and provides an opportunity to learn from others who are also caring for someone with dementia,” according to Julia Pechlivanos, Executive Director of the Alzheimer’s Association in Northwest Ohio. “Whether you are a caregiver at home, or you have a loved one who you cannot visit right now, support groups can help you cope with the challenges of caregiving under our current circumstances.”

All support groups are led by trained facilitators with experience in dementia caregiving.

Groups are scheduled for:

Friday, March 27 at 1 p.m; Wednesday, April 1 at 10 a.m.

Thursday April 9 at 10 a.m.

Tuesday, April 14 at 1 p.m.; Tuesday, April 21 at 1 p.m.

Thursday, April 30 at 10 a.m. 

Advance registration is required, and participation is limited. To register, individuals should call 1-800-272-3900. To learn about other Alzheimer’s Support Groups, go to: alz.org/nwohio.

The Alzheimer’s Association is the premier organization and advocate for families dealing with Alzheimer’s disease. The organization’s 24/7 helpline - which is 1-800-272-3900 - connects individuals to a live person. The Association supports families through support groups, education programs, referrals to community organizations, help with enrollment in clinical trials and information that can help people better understand the stages of the disease.

The Association also has social workers who can provide individualized education and planning, and an online community resource finder that can help people identify housing options, medical services or community services. For more information, go to alz.org/nwohio.

9:29 a.m. -- OhioHealth Mansfield and Shelby hospitals announce medical supply donation sites

OhioHealth Mansfield Hospital and OhioHealth Shelby Hospital are announcing the opening of temporary donation sites to provide a safe, convenient way to donate needed medical supplies while honoring the Governor and the State’s directives on social distancing and group gatherings.

These drive-up, drop-off collection sites are located left of the main entrance of Mansfield Hospital, 335 Glessner Ave., and outside the surgery entrance of Shelby Hospital, 199 W. Main St. The sites will be open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday, March 25 through Friday, March 27 and Monday, March 30 through Friday, April 3. Future collection times and locations may be announced at a later date.

To donate, please send an email to: supplydonation@ohiohealth.com and OhioHealth will contact you to finalize the donation. If you would like to donate but are uncomfortable leaving your home, pick-up arrangements may be made using the email above.

OhioHealth is accepting donations of the following new, unopened medical supplies:

o N-95 Masks

o Face Shields

o Surgery Masks

o Procedure Masks

o Medical Eyewear/Glasses

o Isolation Gowns

o Medical Coveralls

o Exam Gloves (S,M,L)

o Hand Sanitizer

o Soap

o Bleach

o Toilet Paper

o Biohazard Bags

o Disposable Lab Coats

o Nebulizers

OhioHealth has also opened collection sites in Marion, Athens, Circleville and in and around Columbus.

9 a.m. --Mansfield police will not be ticketing people who are out in public

Mansfield Mayor Tim Theaker on Wednesday issued an email saying the city's police officers have not been instructed to ticket residents for being out in public during the statewide COVID-19 "stay-at-home" order.

"However, we do need to remember the state and city are still under the 'stay at home' order and that all non-essential businesses should be closed. We want to emphasize that restaurants may still be open for carryout. Please continue to support our restaurants with you carryout order," Theaker said.

Tuesday, March 24

7:30 p.m. -- Telehealth provides a way to connect, stay safe and sober

A client shared, “Thank you for helping us through this. I was laid off and had more time on my hands and I was worried if I didn’t have face-to-face meetings, I would lose my accountability and relapse. Being a part of an online group has helped me stay accountable and continue my recovery.”

Healing Hearts Counseling Center LLC., a Behavioral Health agency that offers addictions services, including Medication Assisted Treatment, and mental health services announced that all offered services will be transferred to a HIPAA compliant online platform. Due to the current shelter-in-place order, Healing Hearts is offering clients individual, group, and medical services from the comfort of their own home using an online platform.

The online platform we are using can be used from either cell phone or laptop. If clients do not have access to an internet connection, the app also offers an option to dial in, which enables everyone to stay connected regardless of their personal circumstance. Healing Hearts has also provided clients with a unique username and password to access information through their website. Healing Hearts is offering phone assessments and is able to guide new clients through the intake process so that connecting to our doctors, clinicians, and case managers is easy, fast, and stress-free.

The Executive Director, Alexis Witte, shared, “As a Health and Wellness professional, the agency has been working on creating a virtual community for our clients who need our support today during this stressful period of time.” Our clients have been very excited about connecting through this online platform. We are very proud of them. They are asking about each other’s health and families and providing emotional support to one another.

It is the goal of Healing Hearts to ensure safe and responsive care. Thus, we are providing:

· Twice daily (one morning and one evening) groups 5 days a week and 1 on Saturday

· Either phone or online platform individual sessions for addiction and mental health

· Telehealth for doctor’s visits

Individual accommodations depending on each case. If you would like more information please contact Maja-Lisa Anderson Lee, BA, MA, LPCC at 419-528-5993 or email at Maja.healinghearts@gmail.com.

3:15 p.m. -- NAACP Mansfield meetings will be held by teleconference through April

As directed by Ron Moton, President, NAACP Mansfield, effective immediately

No face-face meetings during the months of April and May. All meetings will be held via teleconferencing.

The Executive Committee meeting will be held on Monday, April 20th, 2020 at 5:30 PM and the General Membership Meeting will begin at 6:30 PM on that same day. The call in information is: Dial in Number: 712-770-5505. Access Code: 806034

1:13 p.m. -- Mid-Ohio reschedules Acura Sports Car Challenge for Sept. 25-27

The International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) and the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course announced today that the 2020 Acura Sports Car Challenge at Mid-Ohio originally set for May 1-3, 2020, has been rescheduled to Sept. 25-27, 2020.

The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship and IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge series are confirmed to run on the new September weekend. Additional series updates, broadcast information and event schedules will be announced as they become available.

The rescheduled date is subject to the ongoing guidance and mandates of national, state and local authorities regarding public gatherings. The health and safety of all associated with this event will remain our priority.

Previously purchased tickets will be honored on the rescheduled Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course dates of Sept. 25-27, 2020. Email for additional information at info@midohio.com for questions on ticket purchases, or visit midohio.com/imsafaq for further details.

10:05 a.m. -- Hope Pantry in Mansfield provides bagged groceries

Hope Pantry in Mansfield is providing bagged groceries from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.

“Since our ministries are being dramatically stretched, especially without the blessing of our many volunteers, we also ask for your financial support,” Rodney Schuster says. "Rest assured, Catholic Charities will continue to follow the example Jesus gave us by serving the poor and healing the sick in these challenging times.”

Individuals and families wanting to assist or those needing assistance are encouraged to reach out to the Catholic Charities office nearest them: 419-524-0733 - Mansfield.

6:30 a.m. -- Salon 19 Salon Spa extends PPE drop-off site hours

Melissa Cary, owner of Studio 19 Salon Spa, has announced her facility at 19 E. 4th St. will offer more hours to allow the public to drop off medical personnel protective equipment.

The salon, ordered closed last week due to the COVID-19 outbreak, will accept donations Tuesday and Wednesday from noon to 3 p.m. The masks, gloves, hand sanitizers, etc. will be taken to OhioHealth Mansfield Hospital and also the local Emergency Management Agency.

Drop-off of PPE can be done curbside. For more information, call 429-524-1911

Monday, March 23

4:39 p.m. Shelby closes City Hall 

In order to comply with the Ohio Department of Health Director's orders, I am modifying the emergency declaration dated March 19, 2020. Shelby City Hall will now be closed to the public starting Tuesday, March 24, 2020. This closure will remain in effect until the orders of the Director are lifted. City Hall staff will be available during 8 AM-4 PM to answer phone calls.

Income tax filings will be accepted by mail only. Residents can obtain birth certificates by downloading an application from the city's website and mailing it to Shelby City, 43 West Main Street, Shelby, OH 44875. The certificate will be mailed back to you. Death certificates will be issued by appointment only. Zoning documents and applications should be mailed to City Hall.

We apologize for the inconvenience during this time, and I thank you for your understanding.

-- Steve L. Schag, Mayor

3:51 p.m. Crawford County tweaks recycling schedule

Beginning this week, until further notice the recycling center will be closed on Thursdays and Fridays. We will no longer be assisting the public with their recyclables, with the exception of electronics, tires, and appliances. A trailer will be available on the east side of the recycling center to place your recyclables.

The gate will be open Monday through Friday 6:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturdays 8 to 10 a.m.

If someone is using the trailer when you arrive, please use proper social distancing.

Unless it is absolutely imperative to unload your recyclables, please stay home and follow the governor's Stay At Home order.

2:09 p.m. Ontario city offices closed until April 6

Per the Governor's orders, the City of Ontario's offices will be closed until April 6. If there is an emergency please call the Ontario Police at 419-529-2115.

Along with the order, all of the playground areas, dog park, tennis courts, pavilions, play-scape, basketball courts, disc golf, and soccer fields in our City Parks are closed, but the parks will remain open.

1:59 p.m. Friendly House to close March 26

With Governor DeWine’s “Stay At Home” order The Friendly House will be closing all facilities and programs, including Daycare and After School Programs at the end of business Wednesday, March 25 and will reopen as soon as it’s safe to do so.

At this time, Friendly House is moving forward with all plans for summer programming at the facility as well as Hidden Hollow Camp and Happy Hollow Day Camp.

The closure also includes the Open House events for Hidden Hollow Camp scheduled for April 18, and for Happy Hollow Day Camp scheduled for May 3. These events will not be rescheduled.

1:31 p.m. Richland Public Health suspends immunizations and TB testing

Due to the Governor’s order to stay at home, Richland Public Health clinic will be:

· Suspending routine adult and routine pediatric immunizations and TB testing at the Richland Public Health Clinic until April 6, 2020.

· Pediatric flu shots are available by appointment only.

If you have questions about immunizations needs or TB testing, please call 419 774-4700.

1:03 p.m. OhioHealth implements temperature screening process

Because of the evolving situation surrounding COVID-19, OhioHealth is implementing a temperature screening process beginning Monday, March 23, at 5 p.m.

All OhioHealth associates, care providers, patients and those visitors (who fall under exceptions, i.e., end of life situations) coming into an OhioHealth care site will be required to have their temperature taken as part of the COVID-19 screening process. If the temperature is above 100 degrees, that person will not be allowed to enter the building.

Monday, March 23, at 5 p.m.

Screening stations will be put in place at all entrances for the following care sites to screen all associates, providers and patients:

· All OhioHealth hospitals and medical office buildings attached to hospitals

· This may mean access point changes

Tuesday, March 24, 7 a.m.

Any associate, provider or patient coming into any of the following locations will be required to have their temperature taken as part of the COVID-19 screening process.

· All OhioHealth ambulatory locations

· OhioHealth Physician Group locations

· All Freestanding Emergency Departments

· All outpatient oncology offices

· Kobacker House

11:43 a.m. YMCA's Fran Child Care to provide temporary Pandemic Child Care

YMCA Fran’s Child Care (750 Scholl Road) and Ontario Y Child Care (2200 Bedford Blvd) locations will open to provide Temporary Pandemic Child Care for the children of “essential service employees.” Both centers, conveniently located near hospitals, are licensed through the Ohio Department of Job & Family Services.

Each center is equipped to care for infants as young as 6 weeks, toddlers, preschool, and school-age children. The hours of operation will be 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. More details will be available on the Y’s website, www.mansfieldy.org and scroll down to Pandemic Care “Get info” to fill out the form.

Families in need must contact Velma Bond at 419-522-3511 x244 or via email at vbond@mansfieldy.org. Please send enrollment forms via email. In person enrollment will be available at the Mansfield Area Y, 750 Scholl Road, from 10am – 2pm on Wednesday and Thursday this week.

Please disperse this to the community how you see fit. I will be available to answer questions regarding the service day or night.

Thank you and stay healthy!

9:38 a.m. Crawford County removes recylcing bins

Due to the CDC and NIAID findings, all recycling trailers have been removed until further notice. We are still accepting recyclables at the recycling center Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. as long as your items are sorted.

6:30 a.m. -- Richland County Democratic Party cancels exec committee meeting

The Richland County Democratic Party has cancelled the regularly scheduled April 9 executive committee meeting. The officers of the party urged members and everyone to comply with the state director of health’s “Stay at Home” order.

In addition, the party has suspended rental of the headquarters facility until further notice. To keep informed regarding the Richland County Democratic Party, visit the Party’s website at www:Richlandcountydemocrats.com

Sunday, March 22

5:24 p.m. -- Plymouth-Shiloh Local School District: Student lunch program update during shut down

Due to the Governor’s “stay at home order” issued today there are going to be changes to our student lunch program. Starting tomorrow we will only be distributing food on Monday of each week. This is in consideration of our employees’ safety and the safety of their families.

The program will continue to operate as the previous week. You will need to register for food pick up each week. We will continue to use pick up points throughout the district to distribute the food. We will attempt to provide each family as much food as possible through this program, however we do not feel we will be able to provide meals for the entire week with only one distribution. Thank you for your continued understanding and flexibility during these difficult times.

3:52 p.m. --  Catholic Charities HOPE Food Pantry Update

Beginning Monday, March 23, the HOPE Food Pantry hours are changed. The pantry will be open Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri, 8:30 am-12:30 pm for prepackaged drive thru service only. Please call 419-524-0733 ext 230 for more information.

Saturday, March 21

11 a.m. -- Temporary Pandemic Child Care option available

Temporary Pandemic Child Care License is a new rule which sets the process and requirements of the temporary pandemic child care license. This temporary licensure will allow approved programs to serve children whose parents are employed providing health, safety and other essential services as defined by the Director of the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services in consultation with the Director of the Ohio Emergency Management Agency.

There is no application fee and these programs will not be required to be rated in Step Up To Quality in order to provide publicly funded child care.

Payment for these programs will be determined through an agreement process with the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.

When approving programs for temporary licensure ODJFS must use discretion regarding the number of licenses approved based on need and pandemic health concerns. As a result ODJFS will evaluate programs based on location, capacity, and the number of children currently being served with parents employed to provide health, safety or other essential services.

What is a temporary pandemic child care center license?

A temporary pandemic child care center license is a short-term license to provide child care services to children whose parents are employed providing health and safety services as defined by the Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS).

Additional Info

Per ODJFS “The licensing application submitted for Step-By-Step Child Care Inc., located at 1289 Ashland Road, Mansfield, has been approved to operate as a temporary pandemic child carevcenter.”

During this time of uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, Step by Step childcare would like tovinform the community that there is extra capacity available at our facility. We have addedvadditional staffing for this period of time. We do accept ODJFS childcare benefits.

Additional procedures have been implemented beyond our normal routines in our facility.vParents are no longer allowed past our normal reception area when dropping off or picking up children. Upon arrival, employees and children are washing their hands and having their temperature checked before working in their classroom. We are frequently disinfecting and sanitizing often-touched surfaces such as door handles, countertops, gates, tables, chairs, toys, restroom surfaces, offices, food equipment, and break rooms.

While we have always cleaned and sanitized, you may notice increased measures being taken during our open hours. Deep cleaning and sanitizing will also occur after hours using recommended sanitizers from the CDC.

While our employees already practice proper handwashing techniques during work hours we have encouraged them to consider being even more vigilant.

Again, the health and safety of our children, parents, and the Step by Step team are our top priority and we are committed to doing our part to help keep your family safe.

All pandemic licensing rules are being followed. Please call to speak with an employee of Step by Step Childcare about setting up an appointment for enrollment.

Friday, March 20

8:15 p.m. University Hospitals updates visitor policy starting Saturday, March 21

To protect staff, patients, and the community during the COVID-19 pandemic, UH Samaritan Medical Center is adopting new restrictions on patient visitations at all UH Samaritan facilities. Effective Saturday March 21 at 7 a.m., UH Samaritan’s visitor policy will change as follows:

Patient Visitors:

 Inpatients with confirmed COVID-19 – No visitors will be allowed

 General medical floors – No visitors will be allowed

 Seidman Cancer & Infusion Center Patients – No visitors will be allowed

 Birthing and Women’s Unit inpatients – visitors are limited to the same two adult visitors for the duration of the patient’s hospital stay. Only one visitor will be allowed to spend the night with the patient. These visitors will be screened for symptoms of respiratory illness and temperature greater than 100.0 degrees F upon entrance to the Birthing & Women’s Unit, and will not be allowed to enter the facility if they screen positive.

 Surgical patients - one visitor will be allowed on the day of surgery only and will be screened. Surgical patient visitors will not be allowed to enter the facility if they screen positive.

 Ambulatory Health Centers, Physician Offices, Emergency Room and Urgent Cares – only one visitor will be allowed for the duration of the appointment/visit and will be screened.

Patient visitors will not be allowed to enter the facility if they screen positive

Visitor Screening:

 Temperature screen must be less than 100.0 degrees F and

 Must be flu symptom-free: no cough, no runny nose, no diarrhea, no shortness of breath. Any visitor that screens positive will not be allowed to enter the facility. UH Samaritan has also initiated Retail Pharmacy curbside pick-up for prescriptions. Arrangements can be made by calling the Samaritan Retail Pharmacy directly at (419) 289-9636.

The UH Samaritan Hospital Cafeteria and Gift Shop are closed to the public at this time.

The Red Cross is facing a severe blood shortage during the COVID-19 outbreak, and donors are urgently needed. Red Cross Blood Drives will be held at the UH Samaritan Administrative Services Building, 663 East Main Street, Ashland, every Friday in April (4/3, 4/10, 4/17, and 4/24) from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Schedule an appointment by using the free Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-REDCROSS (1-800-733-2767).

2:50 p.m. Crawford Park District Board to host special meeting on march 26

The Crawford Park District Board of Park Commissioners will be holding a special meeting on Thursday, March 26 at 10 a.m. The meeting is to discuss financial matters within the Crawford Park District budget. The meeting will take place at the Lowe-Volk Park Nature Center, 2401 State Route 598, Crestline. 

For more information, please contact the Park District Office at 419-683-9000.

1:08 p.m. RCT: Stanton Transit Center closed

Based on recommendations and guidance from the CDC, the Governor’s office and the Ohio Department of Public Health, to limit the gathering of people in groups of more than 10, the Stanton Transit Center will be closed to the public.

Please dress accordingly for the weather if you have to wait for a bus. Also please continue to keep social distance and safety precautions when riding the buses.

Richland County Transit is committed to you and your safety.

1 p.m. Catholic Charities is open on a limited basis.

Catholic Charities is open on a limited basis. Call 419-524-0733 for information on prescription/medical bill assistance, rent/mortgage assistance, and guardianship services. All appointments are by phone only.

The HOPE food pantry is open for drive thru service. Call 419-524-0733 for more information.

Noon Black Belt Pro Fitness announces free, virtual training

For as long as Ohio's school are closed, Black Belt Pro Fitness will offer their award-winning martial arts & fitness curriculum free to the community online. To take part, you have to sign up here and they will be in touch with you regarding a schedule and streaming information. Classes are available for both children and adults. 

9:37 a.m. Richland County Children Services cancels events

In the interest of safety to our families and community partners, all public kick-off events have been cancelled due to the threat of the COVID-19 virus. The 7th annual Billboard and Calendar Contest for third -grade students throughout Richland County has also been cancelled. Richland County Children Services will observe National Child Abuse Prevention Month with the following activities:

Pinwheels for Prevention at the Richland County Courthouse Wednesday, April 1, RCCS staff will be placing 1,260 Blue Pinwheels on the front lawn of the Richland County Courthouse, 50 Park Ave E, Mansfield, OH 44902. The 1,260 Blue Pinwheels represent every report of abuse or neglect received by the Agency in 2019. The Blue Pinwheels are a reminder that every child deserves a safe, happy and permanent home.

Wear Blue Day Wednesday, April 8. Wear Blue Day is an annual statewide event to spread awareness on the important issues of child abuse, neglect and dependency. On this day local businesses, offices, schools, agencies, factories, retail outlets and media partners are asked to Wear Blue to show unity against child abuse and neglect. Participants can take pictures of themselves, their group, classmates or co-workers wearing blue and send them via email to Brigitte.Coles@jfs.ohio.gov for publication on the agency’s website and Facebook page. 

For more information about child abuse prevention programs and activities go to richlandcountychildrenservices.org. Please call the Richland County Children Services 24-hour child abuse hotline at 419-774-4100 to report child abuse and neglect.

Thursday, March 19

7:58 p.m. Avita Health System no longer permitting patient visitors

BUCYRUS / GALION / ONTARIO – In a continued effort to protect patients, visitors, employees, medical staff, and the community, Avita Health System will no longer permit visitors at Bucyrus, Galion, and Ontario Hospitals starting Friday, March 20 until further notice. There are limited exceptions to the visitor restrictions, including:

 Patients receiving end-of-life care.

 Patients under the age of 18.

 Patients with disabilities who need assistance.

 Patients undergoing emergency surgery.

 Maternity patients are limited to 1 support person for the entire duration of their stay.

Also starting tomorrow, March 20, Avita will be limiting the number of entry points at Bucyrus and Galion Hospitals to reduce potential COVID-19 exposure and inhibit traffic throughout the facilities.

The main “lobby” entrances at both hospitals will be locked, as well as the Pre-Admission Testing entrance and South entrance at Galion Hospital.

The entrance that connects Ontario Hospital to Richland Mall was locked earlier in the week and will remain locked. All other entrances, including entry to the emergency departments at all three hospitals, will remain open.

To answer questions about COVID-19, Avita’s Coronavirus Information Hotline is available 7 days a week from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 419-468-0800.

Avita Health System’s team of experts are dedicated to the health and safety of the community. Avita will continue to monitor hospital operations, assess the needs of the community, and take necessary COVID-19 precautions as the situation develops and new information emerges.

2:54 p.m. MindSprouts creative writing program deadline extended at The Ren 

In accordance with Governor Mike DeWine’s Executive Order, the Renaissance has rescheduled, postponed or cancelled events through May 8, 2020.

As our area teachers, students, and families deal with school closures, the Renaissance Education Department will continue its annual MindSprouts Creative Writing program, part of the Mechanics Bank Education Series and with support by Altrusa International, for students in kindergarten through 12th grade.

Typically, area K-12 teachers are invited to schedule a free in-class, “jump start” workshop with Renaissance Teaching Artist Dauphne Maloney, trained by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C.

However, since many previously scheduled workshops cannot be held due to school closures, the deadline for entries has been extended to Wednesday, April 15, 2020.

The annual MindSprouts Creative Writing contest invites students to submit one composition in one or more of the following categories: short story, play, or poem. This year’s contest theme is “Magical Mysteries!” Top submissions from each grade band in the MindSprouts contest are sent to a celebrity panel for judging, then adapted for the stage and showcased at the Renaissance in May.

Past judges for the contest have included SNL writers Tina Fey, Rachel Dratch, Jeff Richmond, and the Renaissance's own Artistic Director, Michael Thomas. The MindSprouts 2020 Showcase, originally scheduled for May 14, 2020, has been cancelled and will instead be presented as a virtual showcase with a date to be determined. Certificates for top submissions will be awarded via mail, or at the student’s school at a later date.

All submissions to the MindSprouts contest must correspond to the theme: “Magical Mysteries!” The contest is open to any public, private or homeschooled student in grades K-12. All interested students may submit individually, or students may submit one collaborative work from a group of up to three students.

All submissions must be received by the Renaissance no later than April 15 to be eligible for inclusion in the contest. Submissions will be accepted via mail and email. Submissions should be mailed to: Dauphne Maloney, Renaissance Education Department, 138 Park Avenue West, Mansfield, OH 44902. Email submissions can be sent to: dauphne@mansfieldtickets.com.

For more information on the MindSprouts program/submission guidelines or any Renaissance Education programs, visit RenTickets.org.

2:40 p.m. HEAP/PIPP no longer taking face-to-face interviews

Community Action Commission of Erie, Huron, and Richland Counties, Inc. (aka HEAP/PIPP) will no longer conduct face-to-face interviews until further notice. This is by order of the Ohio Development Services Agency following the State of Emergency declared by Governor Mike DeWine due to COVID-19.

If you have a scheduled appointment, please be available for a phone interview at the time for which it was scheduled. An Intake Specialist will call you and conduct the interview and provide information on how to get all of your supporting documentation to us to complete your application for assistance.

CACEHR will NOT be conducting walk-in appointments or home visits during this time because of the restriction for face-to-face interviews.

The PUCO has also ordered that utilities formulate a plan to work with customers to avoid disconnect because of this issue. Please be aware that this does NOT mean to stop paying your utility bill.

Our staff will do everything possible to ensure you are still helped with your utility needs. Thank you for your understanding and cooperation during this time to ensure health and safety of yourselves, our staff, and other customers.

12:49 p.m. Social Security offices closed, but benefits to continue

By Andrew Saul

Commissioner, Social Security Administration

I want you to hear directly from me how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting our services. The first thing you should know is that we continue to pay benefits. Be aware that scammers may try to trick you into thinking the pandemic is stopping your Social Security payments but that is not true. Don’t be fooled.

To protect you and help stop the spread of this coronavirus, we cannot accept visitors in our offices at this time. There are several other ways you can get help. Many services are available online. If you have a critical need that you cannot address online, we can help you over the phone.

Please visit our Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) page to find out what services we are continuing and which ones we are suspending, how to contact us, and important information about deadlines we are extending to ease the burden on you and medical providers during this pandemic.

You can subscribe to receive email or text message notifications when we update our Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) page. Please share this information with your family and friends to help us spread the word.

12:40 p.m. Salvation Army serving those impacted by coronavirus (COVID-19)

The Salvation Army of Mansfield, located at 47 South Main St. Mansfield, OH, continues to serve those in the community during the Coronavirus pandemic.

“We understand that the need for food, counseling, emergency assistance and programming will continue to increase during this global crisis, and we stand ready to serve,” said Captain Andrew Betts, Commanding Corps Officer for The Salvation Army of Mansfield. “Safety is our top priority for our clients and staff, therefore, in compliance with state and local authorities, we have made adjustments in how we are delivering our programs, but we will continue to meet needs for as long as we can.”

The Mansfield Corps will continue to host their monthly Feeding Week, next week, from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Hot meals will be available for carry out. Regarding social services programs, these will also still be active.

“Anyone in need of assistance can come to the entrance of the Dewald Community Center from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.," Betts said. "They will receive pick up instructions for supplies. We will also continue our emergency services, such as rent and utility assistance, to help support all of those in in need during this crisis.”

Appointments for emergency service assistance are available by calling (419) 525-2912 on Mondays at 1 p.m.

The Salvation Army is known as one of the top agencies in the world in helping communities through disasters and in times of crisis.

“Operating during times of disaster, concern and tragedy, is something each of our Salvation Army officers are prepared and trained to do,” Betts said.

The Salvation Army corps community centers across Ohio can help individuals with emergency utility and rent assistance and provide fresh and non-perishable food item.

For the most up to date information on program changes and expanded offerings, contact your local Salvation Army Corps. To find a location in your area, visit www.SalvationArmyOhio.org or call 216-861-8185.

11:53 a.m. OhioHealth installs no-visitor policy on Friday

Because of the quickly evolving situation surrounding COVID-19, OhioHealth is implementing a NO VISITOR policy effective Friday, March 20, at 7 a.m.

We will make limited exceptions for:

 End-of-life patients

 Patients with disabilities who need assistance

 Patients under 18 - both parents will be allowed to visit their child

 Maternity patients can have one support person for the duration of their stay

 There will be no time limits on approved visitors

Care sites impacted:

All OhioHealth care sites will be impacted by this policy, including:

 Hospitals

 Urgent Care facilities

 Freestanding Emergency Departments

 OhioHealth Physician Group offices

 Medical Office Buildings

 And more

OhioHealth Hospitals:

 OhioHealth Riverside Methodist Hospital

 OhioHealth Grant Medical Center

 OhioHealth Doctors Hospital

 OhioHealth Grady Memorial Hospital

 OhioHealth Dublin Methodist Hospital

 OhioHealth Hardin Memorial Hospital

 OhioHealth Marion General Hospital

 OhioHealth O’Bleness Hospital

 OhioHealth Mansfield Hospital

 OhioHealth Shelby Hospital

 OhioHealth Grove City Methodist Hospital

 OhioHealth Berger Hospital

11:19 a.m. The Renaissance Theatre announces 13 is postponed

Mansfield Youth Theatre's production of 13 is currently being rescheduled to a later date. In light of this, the Media Rehearsal scheduled for March 23 at 6 p.m. is cancelled

Wednesday, March 18

10:51 p.m. Glam boutique closed unti further notice

GLAM boutique at 1346 Lexington Ave will be closed until further notice. Keeping our customers & staff safe is our #1 priority. Please check our social media pages Facebook @glamlifemansfield and Instagram #glamlifemansfield for any updates.

We love and appreciate all of you and are praying that this will pass quickly. Thank you everyone for your wonderful support.

9:30 p.m. OSU Mansfield Job Fair cancelled on April 8

The 2020 Spring Job & Internship Fair, scheduled for Wednesday, April 8 from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. in the Campus Rec Center, has been cancelled. Instead, we will help you recruit, using tools and resources quickly available to everyone, to include email and other forms of digital resources.

In order to help you meet your recruiting needs, we will create a week-long schedule of communications to students, focusing on certain industries each day. In the communications, we will tell the students that if they are interested in applying that they should prepare their resumes and cover letters then email them to you after they are reviewed through the career offices. This schedule of communications will run after April 8. By breaking down the available postings into shorter daily emails by industry and position type, we hope that larger numbers of students will be able to better respond to the varieties of open opportunities.

If you would like to create a short video introduction to your company or organization highlighting the positions you are recruiting for, we would be happy to share your video link with the students using the targeted email approach mentioned above. If you decide to create a video, please email the link to Pam at Schopieray.4@osu.edu The deadline to do this is April 8, 2020.

Other options to broaden your recruiting opportunities include College Central Network for NC State College students and alumni and Handshake for Ohio State students and recent alumni. Both offer the option to extend your posting(s) to other colleges and universities that use these platforms. Here are the links for those two.

4 p.m. OhioHealth to allow one visitor per patient per day

In an effort to protect our patients, visitors, physicians and staff from COVID-19, OhioHealth is implementing a more restricted visitation policy than was originally announced on Monday. The new policy will be effective immediately.

Visitor guidelines:

· Patients will be limited to one per day

o One exception – both parents will be allowed to visit with their child

· Visitors will not be allowed to wait in lobbies or cafeterias

· Visitors must be 18 years or older

· Maternity patients will be limited to one support person during their entire length of stay

· In-person Behavioral Health visits will no longer be permitted due to the common space these require

· Visiting hours at OhioHealth Mansfield Hospital and OhioHealth Shelby Hospitals are 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. All other OhioHealth hospitals are 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Overnight visits will not be permitted with the exception of end-of-life situations

· We will make limited exceptions for end-of-life patients and for those with disabilities who need assistance

Visitor screening:

Visitors to all OhioHealth hospitals, outpatient care centers and physician offices will also be screened and will not be granted entrance if any of the following applies:

· Exhibiting Flu-like symptoms

· Fever within the past 24 hours

· Cough or shortness of breath within the past 14 days

· Contact with a confirmed COVID-19 patient within the past 14 days

· International travel within the past 14 days

Care sites impacted:

All OhioHealth care sites will be impacted including:

· Hospitals

· Urgent Care facilities

· Freestanding Emergency Departments

· OhioHealth Physician Group offices

3:58 p.m. Swan Cleaners environmental cleanup to be rescheduled

Due to COVID-19 public meeting restrictions, Swan Cleaners Public hearing scheduled March 20, from 3 to 3:30 p.m. is cancelled. Re-schedule date to be announced at a later date.

3:47 p.m. Mansfield to suspend issuing parking tickets

During the current COVID-19 crisis, the city of Mansfield wants to show its appreciation and thanks to all who continue to support downtown merchaints. Beginning on Wednesday, March 18, the city of Mansfield will suspend issuing parking tickets at meters in downtown Mansfield until further notice.

Many downtown merchants remain open, offering take-out meals and refreshments. Some have even added delivery options.

We encourage all to continue to follow the guidelines set forth by the Ohio Department of Health. Together we will work through these challenging times and will emerge as an even stronger community.

2:30 p.m. Lowe-Volk Center closed through April 12

In light of recent events regarding COVID-19, the Crawford Park District will close the Lowe-Volk Nature Center until April 12. All programs and events are also cancelled until the same date. We will evaluate the situation at that time to determine if we will lengthen the closing and cancellations. All parks and trails will remain open sunrise to sunset.

During typical school closings, we see an increase of parents and grandparents bringing their children to the Lowe-Volk Nature Center. With schools being closed for at least three weeks, we anticipate a similar increase in attendance. However, based on current knowledge of the virus, the decisions at the state level, and for the benefit and health of our community, we need to do our part.

This decision was not easy. We pride ourselves in being a go-to for families to come and enjoy our facilities. While your Nature Center will remain closed, please take the opportunity to enjoy the wonderful trails of your park system. Staff will still be carrying out the day-to-day operations of the Park District. If you have questions, comments, or would like to report a possible trail issue, you can still call the Park District office at 419-683-9000. Thank you for your understanding.

2 p.m. St. Peter's to broadcast Sunday mass at 10 a.m.

Mansfield St. Peter’s Parish announced Wednesday that it will air a televised Sunday Mass for the Mansfield community starting this Sunday, March 22, on WMFD-TV. The telecast is in addition to streaming Mass on its website and social media channels.

On Monday, the Ohio Catholic Conference suspended all public Masses through Holy Week and Easter due to the COVID-19 virus. Catholic churches across the country have been working to offer Sunday Masses online to stay connected with the faithful during this penitential season of Lent.

However, St. Peter’s also wanted to provide an option for our parishioners who are older and may not readily have access to social media.

“What we are going through is unprecedented in our lifetime,” said St. Peter’s pastor, Father Gregory Hite. “I’ve never experienced forgoing Holy Week and Easter celebrations. I’m grateful that we can televise our liturgy on WMFD-TV. It allows us to continue our pastoral care not only to our parishioners, but for all the Catholic faithful in North Central Ohio.”

The Sunday Mass, which will originate from St. Peter’s Catholic Church, is being made possible through the generosity of local businesses and parishioners. They are covering the cost of the airtime for the parish.

“I’m always amazed at the generosity of our parishioner-owned business community,” said Jason Crundwell, St. Peter’s Director of Development. “Right away, I heard from several parishioner-owned businesses, and a several anonymous donors who wanted to support the broadcast. I’m confident as word spreads, we will have additional underwriters step up to help us deliver this vital ministry to the community through the suspension of public Masses.

WMFD-TV can be found on Channel 15 for Spectrum Cable subscribers in Mansfield and is available on most cable systems in North Central Ohio. It is also available over-the-air on Channel 68.

12:45 p.m. Richland County Treasurer's Office lobby closed to public

After careful consideration about COVID-19 concerns for public health, the Richland County Treasurer’s office lobby will be closed to the public.

Property taxes can be paid online at https://www.richlandcountyoh.gov/government/property/treasurer/index.php

Property taxes can also be mailed or placed in the night drop box located just outside of our office on the Northwest side of the county administration building (the Diamond Street side).

All questions can be answered over the phone 419-774-5622 or emailed to bhamilton@richlandcountyoh.us or mfinfgeld@richlandcountyoh.us

The Richland County Land Bank will also be closed to the public. Staff will be available over the phone 419-774-5623.

Questions can be emailed to ahamrick@richlandcountyoh.us or ahike@richlandcountyoh.us. Applications for properties can be obtained at www.richlandcountylandbank.org.

Tuesday, March 17

8:10 p.m. Resources available for Ohio employers facing layoffs, shutdown

All Ohio employers planning a mass layoff or shutdown due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic should provide the following mass-layoff number – 2000180 – and the second link below to an instructional sheet to their employees to speed the processing of unemployment benefits.

COVID-19-affected claimants with otherwise valid applications for unemployment will be awarded benefits. While claimants must still meet the weekly requirements that they be able and available for work, the requirement that they actively search for work while receiving benefits has been waived.

COVID-19-affected contributory employers will receive regular monthly charge statements, but these charges will be charged to the mutual account and not the employer’s account.

Reimbursing employers will follow existing charging requirements under Ohio Revised Code Chapter 4141.

For more information, please see the press release at the following link:

Press Release: http://jfs.ohio.gov/RELEASES/pdf/031620-ODJFS-Provides-COVID-Number.stm

Instructional Sheet: https://www.odjfs.state.oh.us/forms/num/JFS00671

8:05 p.m. Lexington parendatests encouraged to check student up

Lexington Schools parents, please check the Lex Web/Facebook pages for details of our updated plans to provide specific, weekly instruction to our students.

7:45 p.m. Assignments posted for Galion students

The Galion City School District has posted all work for students to complete over the next three weeks on the district website. For students or parents to access it, they should go to galionschools.org.

High school and middle school students are to enable Canvas notifications and to check their Canvas inbox, student email, and Canvas announcements daily for instructions on what to do.

Primary and intermediate students have digital packets available to download on the page. Files are separated by building, grade level, and class.

For Galion students and families to stay up to date on any new information, they can go to the Galion City School’s Facebook page, or they can go to the district website galionschools.org.

4:25 p.m. Renaissance Theatre announces rescheduled and canceled events

In accordance with Governor Mike DeWine’s Executive Order, we have rescheduled, postponed or cancelled our events through May 8, 2020.

The following events are rescheduled: Rock of Ages will be shown on May 22 and 23 at 8 p.m.

The following events are currently pending rescheduling: Mansfield Symphony Orchestra “Mash-up,” Daniel Tiger’s “Neighborhood Live!,” Kashmir: The Live Led Zeppelin Show, and Cabaret.

The following events are officially cancelled: Mansfield Symphony Youth Strings “Spring Concert,” Neos’ Carmina Burana, Fun Center Chordsmen, the film Singin’ in the Rain, and the film The Goonies.

We are cognizant of the impact that cancelling or postponing an event has on our patrons, particularly those who may not be able to attend a rescheduled event. With this in mind, patrons who have purchased tickets to a cancelled or postponed event will be contacted directly by a member of our Box Office staff to discuss their options. For up-to-date information, please visit RenTickets.org.

4:20 p.m. MOESC suspends operations and vents through April 3

On Thursday, March 12, 2020, Governor Mike DeWine announced that all K-12 schools in Ohio will be closed for a period of three weeks, from March 17, 2020, through April 3, 2020. Based upon Governor DeWine’s comments, as well as current circumstances, Mid-Ohio Educational Service Center administration has instructed the following to our MOESC personnel and operations.

Mid-Ohio Conference Center

● All MOESC student events have been either postponed or cancelled starting Tuesday, March 17 through at least Friday, April 3. Specific information on several events will be given below.

● Public access to the facility will be restricted during this period and any questions should be directed to Steve Earnest, Executive Director at 419-774-2503.

Mid-Ohio Educational Service Center Offices

● MOESC offices will remain open and operations will continue with the exception of fingerprinting services which will be temporarily suspended starting Monday, March 16th through April 3rd or until further notice.

Academic Challenge Meets

All MOESC-sponsored March Academic Challenge Tournaments have been postponed with the hopes that the May tournaments can happen. The 4th and 5th grade AC tournaments have been tentatively rescheduled for the evenings of May 12 (4th grade) and 13 (5th grade). In addition the high school AC tournament has been tentatively rescheduled for May 11. Clearly, this is still a fluid situation, so please await further announcements or plans regarding these May tournaments.

Artapolooza

The Artapolooza art festival which includes Cabaret Night has also been cancelled. Due to conference center scheduling and the inability to predict the future situation, MOESC is unable to reschedule this event for this year.

There is the possibility of rescheduling the middle school student art workshop for a date in May.

Students who are submitting art portfolios for review for a gifted identification may still do so. Given the uncertainty of school schedules, etc., there is not yet a new submission date established. More information regarding the new submission date will be released when it is known.

I know that we have a dedicated staff working hard to continue to serve their students, and I am proud of what they are doing to minimize disruption, while maintaining physical safety. Since this is uncharted territory for all of us, we thank you in advance for your understanding and flexibility during this difficult time. Anyone can also follow the most up-to-date information regarding any of our student events by accessing our website (moesc.net) or finding us on Facebook.

Mid-Ohio Educational Service Center provides specialized academic and support services to 10 school districts and over 17,000 students in Crawford, Morrow and Richland Counties. Client districts receive services from curriculum, gifted and special education consultants, speech pathologists, psychologists, special education teachers, occupational therapists and physical therapists.

4:17 p.m. Clear Fork Tree Seedling sale cancelled

Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) disease the Tree Seedling Sale hosted by Clear Fork FFA Alumni in partnership with Richland Soil and Water Conservation District (Richland SWCD) originally scheduled for Friday and Saturday, April 3 & 4, 2020, has been cancelled. For more information on Richland SWCD programs and services, please visit www.richlandswcd.net or call 419-747-8686.

3:32 p.m. Acura Sports Car Challenge cancelled at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course May 1-3.

This is an important update to race fans, competitors and all associated with the Acura Sports Car Challenge at Mid-Ohio event.

Following the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance regarding limiting public gatherings to no more than 50 people, the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) and Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course can confirm the Acura Sports Car Challenge at Mid-Ohio will not take place as previously scheduled from May 1 to 3.

This delays the start of the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course season opening and will impact the following IMSA-sanctioned series:

· IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship

· IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge

· IMSA Prototype Challenge

· Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama

Acura, IMSA, and Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course are in discussions to identify a new date later in 2020.

IMSA and Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course will promptly communicate any updates as further information is made available.

3:30 p.m. Mansfield Utility Collections lobby closed to the public

Due to concerns for the public health the City Of Mansfield Utility Collections “Lobby” will be closed to the public effective Monday, March 16, 2020 until further notice. The drive through window, night deposit box, phone payments as well as online services will still be available

Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact our office at 419-755-9785, fax at 419-755-9414, drive through window and secured drop box at 99 Park Ave East, west side of building, Mansfield, Ohio 44902 or through our online portal @ci.mansfield.oh.us. You may also continue to use The United States Postal Service.

3:28 p.m. Ohio Health cancels elective surgeries

After careful and thoughtful consideration and substantial input from medical staff leadership and administration, OhioHealth has made the difficult decision to cancel elective surgeries and procedures, effective at the close of business on Wednesday, March 18, 2020.

“These are simply unprecedented times for us as a country and especially for us as medical providers,” said Bruce Vanderhoff, MD, senior vice president and chief medical officer at OhioHealth. “As we brace for a possible surge of COVID-19 patients, we must do everything we can to preserve our resources and prepare our community, our facilities and our staff.”

Taking this step is in alignment with recommendations from the U.S. Surgeon General, the American College of Surgeons and numerous other public health experts.

Cancelling elective surgeries will:

· help protect our patients from possible exposure to the COVID-19

· increase inpatient bed capacity

· preserve personal protective equipment (PPE)

· free up equipment such as ventilators and equipment for critically ill patients

· and conserve the critically threatened blood supply.

What is an elective surgery?

An elective procedure is defined as one in which there is no immediate harm in deferring the surgery. Examples of this are joint replacements, bunions, cataracts, bariatrics, asymptomatic hernia, benign breast, benign endocrine, etc.

What is NOT an elective surgery?

If any of the following criteria are met, the surgery or procedure will NOT be postponed:

· Threat to the patient’s life if surgery is not performed

· Threat of permanent dysfunction of an extremity or organ system

· Risk of metastasis or progression of staging

· Risk of rapidly worsening to severe symptoms (time sensitivity)

“We know this will be hard for many of our patients and physicians,” continued Vanderhoff, “but we also know it is the right thing to do right now. The more prepared we are to handle any surge that could come along, the better chance we will have of protecting and caring for our entire community.”

3:26 p.m. Richland Public Health not accepting walk-ins for WIC, Immunizations or TB tests

Effective immediately, for the safety of our staff and clients, we will not be accepting walk-ins for WIC, Immunizations, or TB tests at this time. Please call us at 419-774-4500 to schedule an appointment.

Also, until further notice, all Neighborhood Immunization Clinics and Community Health Screenings are canceled.

3:12 p.m. Galion recycling adjusted

Beginning today, the Galion recycling trailer in East Park will be removed until further notice. With the extra precautions we are now taking due to the coronavirus, the situation with this trailer has been deemed too hazardous to sort through. Everyday, for the past 3 months, we have found some or all of the following in the East Park trailer compartments:

- General bags of trash

- Used pee pads

- Used Poise pads

- Used tampons & applicators

- Used kleenex, napkins, paper towels & toilet paper

- Containers full of diabetic needles

- Used Q-tips

- Adult toys

These items are sometimes loose and mixed in with the other recyclables. Other times, they are in separate bags and mixed with recyclables or general trash.

Galion City Schools is still scheduled to have their recycling collection on Thursday March 26th from 5pm - 7pm. Recyclables can also be brought to our center Monday - Friday 8am - 4pm.

3:08 p.m. Richland County board of elections meeting cancelled

Obviously the meeting of the Richland County Board of Elections which was originally scheduled to start this evening at 7:00 p.m. to start tabulating the results of the Election is no longer needed and is canceled.

Another meeting will be scheduled in the next few days, and a revised agenda will be sent out at that time.

1:02 p.m. Alzheimer’s Association Northwest Ohio Chapter switches to working remotely

In an effort to help stop the spread of COVID-19, the Alzheimer’s Association Northwest Ohio Chapter staff has switched to working remotely.

Based on guidance from state and local public health agencies, the Association’s staff started working 100 percent remotely to ensure continued care and support of local families. Alzheimer’s Association development, research, and advocacy efforts will also continue as the Chapter works to execute its mission at the highest possible level.

“The health and safety of our constituents, volunteers and staff remain our driver as we address the COVID-19 outbreak and as we continue to pursue our mission, today and in the longer term,” Julia Pechlivanos, Executive Director of the Northwest Ohio Alzheimer’s Association, said.

The Association will re-evaluate these measures on an ongoing basis and resume in person engagements as soon as possible, based on public health guidelines. Meetings and events, such as care consultations, will be conducted by phone or video conference whenever possible.

The Association’s HelpLine is available 24/7 for around-the-clock care and support. That phone number is 1-800-272-3900. During normal business hours, the public can also call the Alzheimer’s office at 419-537-1999. Individuals can go online for information at alz.org/nwohio.

12:56 p.m. Price is Right Live rescheduled for Aug. 30 in Columbus

The Price is Right Live has been rescheduled for Sunday, August 30, and is back on sale to the public.

Tickets already purchased for the previous date will be honored, and ticketholders need only to present them at the Palace Theatre on Aug. 30.

Ticket purchasers who prefer a refund can contact the CBUSArts Ticket Center via phone at 614-469-0939. Refund requests will be accepted through Thursday, July 30.

We appreciate your patience!

11:59 a.m. Nikki Glaser: Bang It Out rescheduled for Nov. 27

Nikki Glaser: Bang It Out has been rescheduled for Friday, November 27, and is back on sale to the public.

Tickets already purchased for the previous date will be honored, and ticketholders need only to present them at the Southern Theatre on Nov. 27.

Ticket purchasers who prefer a refund have until Tuesday, October 27, to submit a request. If the tickets were purchased through CBUSArts, a refund can be requested through the CBUSArts Ticket Center via phone at 614-469-0939. If the tickets were purchased through Ticketmaster, a refund may be requested via phone at 800-653-8000.

We appreciate your patience!

11:57 a.m. Crawford Park District Board of Park Commissioners cancels March meeting

The Crawford Park District Board of Park Commissioners has cancelled the monthly meeting for March. The meeting has not been rescheduled at this time. For more information, contact the Crawford Park District at 419-683-9000.

11:45 a.m. Shelby's Marvin Memorial Library to close

he Marvin Memorial Library in Shelby will close on Tuesday, March 17 at 8 p.m. for an indefinite period of time.

11:40 a.m. Crawford County changes recycling procedure

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, we are implementing a few changes to the recycling process. After speaking with the Ohio Department of Health, we are changing the following:

- When bringing your recyclables to the recycling center, leave them outside and ring the buzzer. The public will not be permitted inside the building. Please have your items properly sorted. If they are not, your recyclables WILL NOT be accepted.

- When using the recycling trailers: Do not place any recyclables in bags or in the wrong compartments in the trailers. We are significantly reducing the amount of items we are touching. If the bin is too contaminated, mixed up or has too many bags in it, the entire bin will go in the landfill. IF THE COMPARTMENT IS FULL, TAKE IT HOME AND BRING IT ANOTHER DAY OR BRING IT HERE. Otherwise, it will not be recycled.

Should you have any questions or concerns, please call us M-F 419-562-4169, contact us on Facebook or through email crawfordswmd@midohio.twcbc.com

Monday, March 16

11:15 p.m. Weldon, Huston & Keyser closed to the public

At Weldon, Huston & Keyser it is our priority to keep our employees, their families and our clients healthy. As the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues to spread globally we are trying to do our part to help reduce the spread of this virus in our local community. We will continue to monitor the coronavirus (COVID-19) and review the guidelines from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Although it is not known at this time when our office will be reopening, there will be someone checking voice mail messages and emails.

Please direct any voice mail messages and emails to Attorney Goldman.

Should you need to speak with her, please leave her a voice mail message and she will call you back when she is able.

Thank you and wishing you continued good health.

7:45 p.m. Social Security offices closed

All local Social Security offices will be closed to the public for in-person service starting Tuesday, March 17, 2020. This decision protects the population we serve—older Americans and people with underlying medical conditions—and our employees during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. However, we are still able to provide critical services.

Please read our press release to learn more, including how to get help from the Social Security Administration by phone and online. You can also visit our Coronavirus (COVID-19) information page to learn more and stay up to date.

Please share this message with your friends and loved ones.

6:15 p.m. Shelby YMCA closes

As the COVID-19 pandemic unfolds, our commitment to youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility will not waiver. Each Y is working closely with local, state, and federal authorities, as well as with one another to respond to the unique needs of communities.

Per Governor DeWine’s order to close fitness facilities, the Shelby YMCA will be closed beginning today, March 16 at 8:30 p.m. until further notice.

Being a relationship organization, this makes us very sad. We bring people together – large numbers of them, from all backgrounds and circumstances – and create personal connections. But the nature of this virus, and how it spreads, presents significant challenges to how we deliver our mission and strengthen community. We are sorry for all the personal hardships and inconveniences during this trying time. But we are at the front of this fight and will continue to work with all to help stop the spread of this pandemic.

We ask for your patience and continued support as we stand united in service during this unprecedented time.

Monthly membership dues will be put on hold for this month’s draft. Annual membership dues will be extended. However, for those that feel able, we encourage you to donate your dues to help us meet the needs of the community in creative ways. Contributions can be made online at https://www.mightycause.com/story/Shelbyymcacovid-19.

For more information, please contact Shelby YMCA.

5:41 p.m. Mansfield Area Y closes

Per Governor DeWine’s order to close fitness facilities, the Mansfield Area Y will be closing its doors at 6:00pm, Monday, March 16, 2020. As we are allowed, we will be continuing to provide child care services with these exceptions:

o Immediate family only for pick-up/drop-off

o No outside visitors or volunteers for programming allowed

o Children will not have access to the YMCA gymnasium and pool

4:45 p.m. Mansfield Metropolitan Housing Authority is closed

Mansfield Metropolitan Housing Authority is closed to the public during this COVID-19 impact. Employees are still working and available by telephone, email or utilizing our dropbox. Updates will also be posted on the Mansfield Metropolitan Housing facebook page. 419-524-0029.

4:30 p.m. Rinehart-Walters-Danner Insurance to be closed

Rinehart-Walters-Danner Insurance - Effective Tuesday, March 17, until further notice, our office will be closed to the public due to the coronavirus (COVID-19). While our office will not be open to the public, we will be conducting “business as usual” via phone, email and online.

4:15 p.m. -- Ontario City Parks to remain open 

All Ontario City Parks will remain open, but the restrooms will remain closed until further notice.

Effective Tuesday, March 17 at 11:59 p.m. the Community Room is closed to the public for at least the next 30 days. If you have an event scheduled for the Community Room we will work with you on getting it rescheduled or reimburse the rental and deposit fee. No new rentals are being scheduled until further notice.

All Ontario Recreation Department activities are cancelled until further notice.

City Council and Committee meetings scheduled for Wednesday the 18th are cancelled, decisions on future meetings will be announced at a later date.

3:55 p.m. -- Lucas Lions cancels March 19 meeting

Lucas Lions will not be meeting on Thursday, March 19. Stay home and stay well.

3:40 p.m. -- Plymouth-Shiloh School District asks families to complete Meal Service Survey on Facebook

Just a reminder for those families who would like their children provided with food services during the COVID-19 calamity days, please complete the Meal Service Survey on Facebook or the school website or call 419-687-8200 ext. 22105 and leave a message with a name and phone number. Thank you.

This e-mail has been sent to you by Plymouth-Shiloh Local School District. To maximize their communication with you, you may be receiving this e-mail in addition to a phone call with the same message. If you no longer wish to receive email notifications from Plymouth-Shiloh Local School District, please click here to unsubscribe.

To view the Plymouth-Shiloh Local School District privacy policy, please click here.

3:12 p.m. -- Richland County Children Services meeting cancelled

The March 16, 2020, 3:30 p.m. regular meeting of the Richland County Children Services Board in the board room of the Children Services building located at 731 Scholl Rd., Mansfield, OH 44907, has been cancelled. Thank you for your understanding and continued support.

3 p.m. -- Richland SWCD employees will work remotely

Due to concerns stemming from COVID-19, Richland SWCD employees will work remotely beginning Monday, March 16, 2020. The Board meeting originally scheduled for March 19, 2020, has also been cancelled.

You may reach us at RSWCD.Data@richlandswcd.net.

Stormwater permit information available at https://richlandswcd.net/services/water/stormwater/stormwater-documents-list.

Agriculture Pollution Abatement concerns may be reported by calling 614-265-6610.

2 p.m. -- Black Belt Pro Fitness & Richland Source postpone women's self-defense classes

Classes that were to be held on March 17 and March 19 are postponed. We hope to re-schedule at a later date. Black Belt Pro Fitness is currently working on providing free virtual martial arts classes to the community during this shutdown. Stay tuned for details on that. 

1:56 p.m. -- Pastures for Profit Grazing School postponed

Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) disease The Pastures for Profit Grazing School hosted by Richland Soil and Water Conservation District (Richland SWCD) and their partners originally scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday, April 1 and 2 and Saturday, April 4, 2020, has been postponed.

The rescheduled date will be posted as soon as it is available. 

For more information on Richland SWCD programs and services, please visit www.richlandswcd.net or call 419-747-8686.

1:44 p.m. -- Galion cancels Econocomic Development and Airport Committee meeting

The Economic Development and Airport Committee meeting scheduled for Tuesday, March 17, 2020.

1:42 p.m. -- Crestline Historical Society and Museum closes

All activities at the Crestline Historical Society/Museum will be cancelled until further notice. We will advise of reopening.

1:40 p.m. -- Humane Society of Richland County announces changes

Out of an abundance of extreme caution, and in an effort to keep our staff, community, and our animals safe and healthy, The Humane Society of Richland County is making the following changes, effective Monday, March 16th 2020:

Beginning today, we are suspending our regular open shelter hours. Our doors will remain closed as we work behind the scenes to keep our animals happy and healthy. We will be here and available by phone, email or facebook messenger during normal business hours to answer your questions and respond to reports of animal cruelty, neglect, and abandonment. During this time, we will also not be accepting volunteers unless they have scheduled with us in advance.

In addition, we will be taking adoption applications and surrenders by appointment only. Please call 419-774-4795 during our normal business hours to schedule a time. Our adoptable animals will be kept up to date and regularly added via our website, www.adoptourstrays.com, petfinder, and through our facebook photo albums. We will also begin to post live videos of our adorable adoptables to our facebook page. We encourage our followers to check our facebook page regularly and often for timely announcements and new additions. 

In addition to the above measures, we are asking the public to limit their donations to our current most needed items: Lysol wipes, paper towels, non-clumping cat litter, laundry detergent, and bleach. We encourage people who are interested in donating to do so via paypal, https://adoptourstrays.com/support-us/. We respectfully ask that you refrain from donating used bedding or towels to us at this time.

The changes we are making are temporary, and they are not meant to fuel any kind of panic. Managing Director Linda Chambers says, “We are simply trying to responsibly adapt to the recommendations that are being made by government to mitigate the spread of this virus. We also acknowledge that, as a small staff who works 7 days a week caring for animals, it will be impossible to care for these deserving animals if we don’t take care of ourselves as well. We apologize for any inconvenience this causes.”

On behalf of the Board of Directors and staff of The Humane Society of Richland County, we thank you so much for your understanding and continued support.

11:35 a.m. -- Mansfield City Council restricting seating

Mansfield City Council will meet as scheduled on Wednesday evening. But seating will be restricted in order to meet social distancing requested by Ohio Gov. DeWine.

The middle row of the council chambers will be closed. "Every other" seat in the other rows will remain vacant.

A maximum of 20 to 25 people will thus be able to attend the session. Council caucus begins at 7 p.m. with the legislative session to follow.

11:20 a.m. -- Richland County Prosecutor's Office implements new procedures

As a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, and for the health, safety and welfare of the public, law enforcement, and staff, the Richland County Prosecuting Attorney's Office has implemented the following procedures, effective immediately:

Hours and Questions: The prosecutor's office will be open from 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM, Monday through Friday. In addition to the main phone number, the prosecutor's office has established a contact form on the main page of our website that will be monitored during regular business hours. If the main line is busy, please feel free to utilize this online form for a prompt response.

Office Access: Prior to visiting the office, please call in and verify that in-person presence is necessary. Many matters will be handled via phone. Access to the secured portion of the office will be restricted to employees only. Arrangements have been made for private meeting spaces that are not within the employee-only area. Telephone conference remains the preferred method of communication if in person meeting is not mandatory.

Court Hearings: If you are scheduled to appear as a witness in any hearing for our office, please call the main office number prior to the hearing to confirm whether a hearing is going forward.

Diversion: Diversion candidates are to report via phone at the main number at 419-774-5676 until further notice. Diversion payments should still be made and individuals on diversion should contact the office for direction.

Teleconferencing: The prosecutor's office will be utilizing phone and video conferencing in lieu of routine meetings that usually take place in office. This includes prosecutor pretrial conferences and meetings with county clients.

Environmental Health: Routine cleaning has increased and specific procedures are being followed to reduce and contain the transmission of disease.

If you have any questions, please call the prosecutor's office at 419-774-5676.

11:15 a.m. -- Mansfield/Richland County library closing tonight

Following the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Richland Public Health, Mansfield/Richland County Public Library will be closing all 9 locations as of Monday, March 16, at 8 p.m. until Monday, April 6.

In addition, First Call 211 lobby walk-in services will be closing Monday, March 16 at 4 p.m. until April 6. First Call 211 phone services will remain open as scheduled for emergency assistance.

Library customers have until the close of business Monday, March 16 to pick up any items that may have already been placed on hold. All due dates for currently checked-out library materials have been extended to April 15. We ask that you do not return any items to local branches until the library re-opens.

Mansfield/Richland County Public Library is committed to providing online resources and services throughout these branch closures. Resources can be accessed through your MRCPL library card. Patrons can also sign up for eCards at https://www.mrcpl.org/services/front-desk/get-a-digital-services-ecard to begin utilizing these resources at any time. In addition, all branches of MRCPL have enabled 24/7 Wifi services.

"As the public health situation changes hourly, we commit to keeping you informed of any changes to our scheduled events. Please check our social media pages and https://www.mrcpl.org/covid-19 for updates," the library said.

11:05 a.m. -- NECIC and Temp2Higher are open by scheduled appointment only, still working with job seekers

NECIC and Temp2Higher are open by scheduled appointments only. We are not accepting walk-ins at this time.

We are continuing to work with jobseekers. The first step is to register online at www.temp2higher. Once registered-you can contact us via Phone; Facebook Message or Text to 419-522-1611. We will conducting interviews over the phone.

ALL Staff are available via phone and email:

Temp2Higher

Tionna Perdue 419-522-1611 ext 102

tionna@temp2higher.org

Farm/Garden:

Justin Ocheltree 419-522-1611 ext 110  

justin@necic-ohio.org

Mona Kneuss 419-522-1611 ext 116

mona@necic-ohio.org

NECIC:

Edward Akinyemi 419-522-1611 ext 127

edward@necic-ohio.org

Nyasha Oden 419-522-1611 ext 112

nyasha@necic-ohio.org

Tony Chinni 419-522-1611 ext 103

tony@necic-ohio.org

Leona Smith 419-522-1611 ext 114

leona@necic-ohio.org

Deanna West-Torrence 419-522-1 611 ext 115

deanna@necic-ohio.org

Robyn McNulty 419-522-1611 ext 126

robyn@necic-ohio.org

Payroll/Fiscal/Admin:

Matt Ayers 419-522-1611 ext 121

matt@necic-ohio.org

Beth Reitler 419-522-1611 ext 107

beth@necic-ohio.org

11 a.m. -- Richland County Regional Planning closed to public

MANSFIELD -- Until further notice, Richland County Regional planning is closed to the public.

"We ask that if you should have any needs from Richland County Regional Planning, please call 419-774-5684 or email rcrpc@rcrpc.org," the organization said.

"We are taking every precaution to prevent the spread of COVID-19 to the public and our employees. Most needs can be fulfilled via phone, email and US mail. We will make sure your need is taken care of promptly. While this situation is an adjustment for all, our goal is to keep everyone safe and healthy. Thank you for understanding and your assistance."

9:50 a.m. -- Richland Carrousel Park is closed.

The Richland Carrousel Park is closed. "It is a sad, but necessary day, to keep everyone as safe as possible. See you at the Carrousel at a future date. Like us on Facebook for future information."

9:50 a.m. Downtown Improvement Advisory Board meeting for March 19 canceled

The Downtown Improvement Advisory Board meeting scheduled for Thursday, March 19, 2020 has been canceled. A meeting notice will be sent out prior to the next meeting.

9:30 a.m. Mansfield Playhouse postpones activites

The Mansfield Playhouse will be making the following adjustments in order to stay compliant to the Governor's current order and the CDC's most recent recommendations with concerns over the COVID – 19 virus.

All events and activities at the Mansfield Playhouse are now postponed until further notice. This includes all rehearsals, auditions, events, or performances of any kind.

Please visit our site at www.mansfieldplayhouse.com or Mansfield Playhouse @ Facebook for any further updates.

9:05 a.m. Fun Center Chordsmen forced to cancel annual show

The Fun Center Chordsmen has announced the cancellation of their annual show, “Road Trip,” scheduled for Saturday, April 4 at the Renaissance theatre.

In accordance with Governor Mike DeWine’s ban on all public events with more than 100 in attendance, the Chordsmen have, along with numerous other public activities, cancelled their performance. There are no plans to reschedule the show as attempting to obtain an adequate venue seems unlikely. The Chordsmen will continue their show tradition next spring.

The Chordsmen will honor refunds for advanced ticket purchasers.

The Fun Center Chordsmen is a male a cappella chorus whose members love to sing close barbershop harmony. The chorus has members from Richland and surrounding counties. Guests are always welcome. More information is available at www.funcenterchordsmen.com

9:03 a.m. Modern Woodmen Fraternal Chapter closes social activites.

Modern Woodmen Fraternal Chapter closes activities at Pizza Hut and Brown Derby Road House cancelled for March and April.

Sunday, March 15

5:11 p.m. - All non-emergency Richland County Domestic Relations Court hearings are cancelled through April 10.

5:07 p.m. - Phoenix Brewing Company offers home delivery service

Some people say that our delivery truck actually delivers happiness. We don't know about that, but we do know that starting next week, it will begin delivering beer to you at home. By order of Governor DeWine, all bars and restaurants, including taprooms, in Ohio will be closed indefinitely at 9pm this evening. We will still be able to provide walk-up to-go sales and will begin offering home delivery service this week. More information is coming as we finalize our home delivery service areas and adjust our taproom hours for walk-up to-go sales. The new schedules will be released tomorrow morning along with procedures and web links. We understand how disappointing this is, especially with St. Patrick's Day just around the corner, but we also understand the severity of the situation. And while we might not be celebrating in person, we can still raise a glass together through social media! Keep safe, and we will see you soon.

5:04 p.m. - 

• The Richland County Democratic Party has postponed its Jefferson Jackson Dinner.

• Plymouth Shiloh Schools will be on a 2 hour delay Monday, March 16th. Staff should report at their regular time.

Saturday, March 14

3 p.m. Columbia Gas suspends shut-offs for nonpayment due to coronavirus

At Columbia Gas, safety is at the forefront of everything we do and this extends to the health and wellness of our customers and employees.

Financial Assistance Available

We know this could be a time of financial hardship. So, we've voluntarily suspended shutoffs for nonpayment in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, we're offering to customers who indicate either an impact or hardship as a result of COVID-19 our most flexible payment plans, and we will suspend late payment charges until May 1.

Manage Your Account Virtually

We know you may be staying home more, and you can easily manage your Columbia Gas account online at ColumbiaGasOhio.com or over the phone at 1-800-344-4077.

For Your Safety

If you need service that requires our employees to enter your home, you may notice we're taking a few additional precautions.

· We'll be asking for anyone in your home with a contagious illness to please keep their distance as we're working so we can help prevent spreading illnesses and continue to provide service to you and all of our other customers.

· We won't shake your hand. We promise, it's not you. It's another way to keep everyone safe.

· You may notice our gloves, shoe coverings, disinfectant wipes or other protective gear; don't be alarmed. Our team carries these items to preserve the condition of your home and the homes of other customers.

Like you, we're carefully monitoring COVID-19 and following CDC guidelines. As always, we are committed to continuing to provide you will excellent service.

Looking for the latest COVID-19 information? We recommend the CDC's website.

2:51 p.m. Spectrum is offering free broadband and WiFi access to homes with students.

The offer only applies to new Spectrum customers who do not already have a Spectrum broadband subscription.

See complete details at this site.

2:45 p.m. Richland County Job & Family Services, Ohio Means Jobs Center to remain open

The Richland County Job & Family Services (171 Park Ave East) and the Ohio Means Job Center (183 Park Ave East) offices will remain open during their normal working hours of 8 a.m. to  4 p.m. For your safety and the safety of employees, if you choose to come into the office, you will be instructed to use hand sanitizer before you approach the receptionist area.

Alternate options to conduct business with RCJFS include: 1. Applying online at www.benefits.ohio.gov 2. Call the shared services number at 844-640-6446 option 2 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. 3. By email at Richland-ContactUs@jfs.ohio.gov 4. Website at www.rcjfs.net or www.ohiomeansjobs.net 5. Fraud Hotline at 419-774-7867 6. Adult Protective Services Hotline 419-774-5473 7. Agency phone number is 410774-5400 8. Fax number is 419-774-0051 9. Facebook-use messager 10. Exterior dropbox to submit documents

12:30 p.m. Sonshine Band concert at Trinity Methodist church rescheduled

Because of the coronavirus pandemic the Sonshine Band concert scheduled for March 22 at Trinity United Methodist Church, 1592 Grace St., Mansfield, has been rescheduled for 6 p.m. April 26 at the church.

12:30 p.m. Richland Academy of the Arts suspends upcoming performances

The health and safety of Richland Academy of the Arts students, families, staff and faculty is our highest priority. We are closely monitoring updates from the CDC. We are also heeding the advice of local and state health and governmental officials as this situation evolves.

Based on their recommendations and expertise the Richland Academy of the Arts will suspend all classes and lessons from March 14, 2020, through April 5, 2020. During this time the building will be closed. 

As of now we plan to resume on Monday, April 6, 2020. We will remain flexible as relevant information continues to be shared and will be used to inform decision making.

Once classes resume the scheduled weeks of classes will include the weeks of:

April 11, 2020-April 18, 2020 (Our previously scheduled Spring Break)

May 11, 2020

May 18, 2020

The following performances and special events have been suspended until further notice:

March 29, 2020: Music Recital

April 1, 2020: Summer Registration

April 4, 2020: Academy Salutes, Annual Cabaret Show & Auction Fundraiser

April 18, 2020: Little Black Box Theatre Performance

An announcement regarding ticket sales for the dance recitals will be made available as the situation evolves.

We will provide information on individual class schedules and other updates as we know more. If you need to speak with someone please contact us by calling 419-522-8224 or by email at mcooper@richlandacademy.com.

Friday, March 13

10:15 p.m. Friendly house to remain open with these changes

We are attempting to align our decisions with the idea of “flattening the curve” of the virus spread so that our hospital systems can be responsive to those who are in need. As a community, we are all responsible to help slow the virus spread while serving the community in a healthy way.

As the situation in our community evolves, we must also update how we are responding. Thank you for your continued support as we continue to serve you and the community as a whole. After discussion with members of the Friendly House Board of Managers and with consultation with Richland Public Health, Friendly House will continue to remain open with the following changes to our policy and procedures.

Effective immediately, the Golden Age Luncheon scheduled for April 6 is cancelled. All extra affiliated activities such as Girl Scouts and Bible Study are also cancelled. The ACE program Fun Day scheduled for March 28 is cancelled.

All basketball league practice and play at Friendly House is cancelled. PAL Mentoring will continue to follow Mansfield City Schools schedule and is postponed for three weeks.

Spring Swim Lessons will continue as scheduled. If your child is scheduled for Swim Lessons and you would like to postpone your class, please contact the office at 419-522-0521. Adult Water Exercise and Lap Swim will also continue as scheduled. Friendly House Preschool and Day Care is scheduled to be deep cleaned and disinfected on Saturday, March 14.

The remainder of Friendly House will undergo the same cleaning and be completed before the After School Program begins on Monday, March 16 at 3 p.m.

Due to the cleaning of the building, the Friendly House After School Program will not be open on Monday until 3 p.m. The Preschool and Day Care will open at 6:30 a.m. on Monday. Friendly House Preschool and Day Care as well as the After School Program will continue to operate with changes in the following procedures.

All parents and/or guardians that drop off a child at Friendly House will be required to answer questions from the CPAA Community CarePort COVID-19 Risk Screening Tool. The child that is being left at Friendly House for care, will also have their temperature taken by an infra-red thermometer.

If answers to the screening tool are disqualified OR if the child has a temperature over 100.4 degrees, for the safety of the Friendly House community, you will not be allowed to leave your child at Friendly House. We strongly encourage parents and guardians to have an open and honest conversation with their children regarding appropriate behavior during this quickly evolving situation.

While your child is at Friendly House, during this Pandemic, their movements between areas of Friendly House will be limited. Please discuss their responsibility to listen to staff instructions as our main goal is to keep them safe so you are able to continue to go to work.

As the situation in our community changes, we may also change our policy and procedures as necessary. If anything changes over the weekend, we will update you as soon as we are able.

Please continue to follow us at https://www.facebook.com/thefriendlyhouse/ for updates and on this page. Also, make sure to sign up for REMIND. Text @fhpre20 to 81010 for Preschool Announcements and text @afsp1920 to 81010 for After School Program Announcements. Thank you again for your continued support.

8:30 p.m. Visitation limited to Richland County Jail inmates

Richland County Sheriff Steve Sheldon reports in compliance with Governor DeWine’s order made today that visitation for inmates at the Richland County Jail is suspended until further notice.

This comes as the result of concerns regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19). As of today, Ohio has found 13 positive cases of the coronavirus, along with 50 negative cases and 159 cases still pending.

7:30 p.m. Richland County Sheriff records bureau limits public access

To be consistent with ongoing community precautions related to the Coronavirus Disease 2019, beginning Monday March 16, 2020 the Richland County Sheriff’s Office will be limiting public access to the Records Section to Tuesdays and Thursdays between the hours of 8 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Services such as; Concealed Weapons Permits, background checks, fingerprinting and in person public records requests will only be processed during the aforementioned times. Sex Offenders, Arson Offenders and Violent Offenders should continue to report as currently required.

Public records request may be directed to the Records Section by phone, 419-774-5881 Ext. #3, or by email, RCSO_Records@richlandcountyoh.gov. Staff will contact you upon completion of the request. If possible, all records requests shall be fulfilled by email.

All Law Enforcement operations will continue without public disruption.

5:30 p.m. Richland County Children Services to address events schedule

Richland County Children Services will release new information on Wednesday, March 18 regarding events planned in observance of National Child Abuse Prevention Month.

If you have any questions or concerns call 419-774-4168.

4:25 p.m. Bellville Opera House cancels event

Opera in the Bellville Opera House, slated for March 27 and 29 has been cancelled.

4:15 p.m. Mansfield Playhouse delays Frozen Jr. auditions

The Mansfield Playhouse will be making the following adjustments in order to stay compliant to the Governor's current order with concerns over the COVID – 19 virus.

Auditions for Frozen Jr. originally scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday, March 17 and 18 respectively will be postponed for one week to March 24 and 25. In order to keep the numbers of attendees to a minimum and reduce risks, all auditions will by appointment only. Those that would like to audition must call the box office at 419 522-2883.

Available hours will be from 5 to 6 p.m., 6 to 7, and 7 to 8 p.m. Participant numbers will be no more than 25 per hour and will only be allowed one support person to accompany.

The Mansfield Playhouse asks that all participants visit the Mansfield Playhouse Facebook Page to download and print an audition form to and complete the necessary information to be submitted at the time of appointment to help expedite the process.

At this time, we will only be doing vocal auditions and call-backs will be held for specific character roles. Vocal audition pieces should show a good selection of vocal range and be no less than 32 bars of music. More information on casting will be provided at the time of auditioning.

Please visit our site at www.mansfieldplayhouse.com or Mansfield Playhouse @ Facebook for any further updates.

4 p.m. Mansfield Christian postpones open house and pancake breakfast

Mansfield Christian's annual open house and pancake breakfast has been postponed to a later date.

3:50 p.m. Temp 2 Higher cancels Elder program

In light of the COVID-19 situation, we want to be sensitive to the needs of our employees as well as our community members. We are taking the necessary precautions to keep our office safe and clean. However, we recognize that even with our best efforts there are inherent risks and you may choose to avoid personal contact and we support that.

Our goal is to make a conscious effort to reduce in person social interactions. We are cancelling the Elder program until further notice. We are cancelling all other large group meetings and will contact impacted attendees as needed. Some staff will be working remotely and our office is open on an appointment only basis.

All staff remains available during regular working hours via phone, email, video conference and scheduled in person meetings. We encourage jobseekers to apply on our website at www.temp2higher.org or call our office at 419-522-1611. We will continue to find work for our jobseekers The best way to stay informed is www.necic-ohio.org , FB page and by calling the office at 419-522-1611

2:45 p.m. Mansfield Art Center taking coronavirus precautions

Out of an abundance of caution for the health and well-being of our visitors, volunteers, and staff, we have decided to postpone classes, workshops, and programs starting Monday, March 16 until April 6, 2020. We are making every effort to reschedule programming and will announce new dates once finalized.

The Art Center’s exhibitions and gallery shop will be open for regular hours Tuesday through Sunday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The Regional High School Exhibition and the Mansfield K-8 Art Show starts March 22. The opening reception is rescheduled for Sunday, April 19 from 3 to 5 p.m.

We take the safety and wellbeing of our staff, volunteers, and guests seriously. Mindful of the concerns surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19), we are committed to being responsive, heeding guidance on preventative measures from the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as well as state and county guidelines.

We thoroughly clean spaces throughout the MAC, and are taking extra steps to disinfect high-touch areas such as tables and chairs, handrails, doorknobs, and elevator.

While we would love to see you at the MAC this spring, if you are sick, we urge you to stay home and avoid close contact with others, as recommended by the CDC and local health authorities.

2:15 p.m. NCSC open to staff only March 16 & 17

In light of recent developments concerning the COVID-19 virus in Ohio, and based on the recommendations from Governor Mike DeWine’s office and public health officials, North Central State College is working on moving in-person classes to online.

North Central State College will be open for faculty and staff only with no classes on Monday and Tuesday, March 16 and 17. CCP courses taught by high school faculty will continue their regular schedule at this time.

Students will return to campus on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday March 18 to 20 so faculty and staff can determine whether each student has access to a computer or internet outside of the college. If students do not have access to technology, packets will be prepared with assignments, exhibits, lecture notes, etc.

We have decided to curtail holding face-to-face classes beginning Monday, March 23, 2020. This means we will transition to Canvas, Zoom, and electronic formats. At the same time, we are committed to ensuring the success of every student enrolled at NC State. During these times, college offices will remain open. The safety and well-being of our students, faculty, and staff remain of the utmost importance, and the College will make adjustments as necessary following state recommendations. 

Courses that cannot be moved online will have alternate plans that will be communicated to students. This change is being made in the best interest of public health while ensuring the continuity of student education.

Infectious disease experts including the Centers for Disease Control, the World Health Organization, and the Ohio Department of Health agree that proper hand hygiene and social distancing will be most effective in controlling the spread of COVID-19. Social distancing is simply actions that reduce large gathering of people to slow the spread.

The College intends to scale up support to students, faculty and staff to provide resources for those who may be unfamiliar with online education or other alternative delivery methods.

Currently there are no known members of the North Central State College who have tested positive for COVID-19. Plans are in place to ask faculty and students about their travel as they return from spring break. 

Furthermore, North Central State is suspending all non-essential out-of-state travel, and may be approved on as-needed basis through the President’s Office. In addition, in-state travel will be addressed on case-by case basis through the division vice-presidents.

“NC State is taking the necessary steps to preserve safety and public health that are in the best interest of our students and employees,” said Dorey Diab, President of North Central State College. NC State students are able to access updates to campus information regarding the COVID-19 online at: https://www.ncstatecollege.edu/coronaresponse.

Students and employees are highly encouraged to follow the health guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19 including: 

· If you are sick, or have mild symptoms of fever or cough, stay home.

· Seek medical attention if you are seriously ill.

· Wash your hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

· Hand sanitizer is less effective than washing. Make sure it contains at least 60%alcohol.

· Cover your mouth when you sneeze or cough using a tissue and dispose of it properly.

· Avoid touching your face, eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.

· Avoid close contact with people whether they appear sick or not.

· Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

· Get a flu shot if you have not already done so.

· Avoid shaking hands.

“The safety of our North Central State students, staff, faculty, and community is of the utmost importance,” said Dr. Dorey Diab, president of NC State. “We will follow the state recommendations and work to be as flexible as possible to make these temporary changes as smooth as possible for all involved. Communication will be key, and I encourage students to keep an open line of communication with their faculty members and employees with their supervisors, and check-in frequently for the latest campus updates.”

1:45 p.m. Easter Bake Sales schedule updated at Mansfield St. Peter's

The Mansfield St. Peter's pierogi sale will still happen on Saturday, March 14, as scheduled from 9 a.m. until noon. The Cabbage Roll Pre-Sale will continue as planned on Thursday, March 19, from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. in the high school cafeteria, since the perishable goods were already on campus. 

We are canceling all other Easter Bake Sale prep events, and the sale scheduled for April 6 and 7.

At St. Peter’s School

 All school-related extracurricular activities are canceled starting Friday, March 13 until April 3.

 Students will report to school on Monday, March 16, so students can pick up materials and assignments for remote learning during the extended break. Parents will receive additional information through their Alma notifications and Spartan Alerts.

 Our school facilities will be closed to non-essential personnel starting at 3:30 p.m. on Monday, March 16, except for the Franciscan Activity Center, which will be open on Election Day for voting.

St. Peter’s Parish

 All parish ministries and meetings are canceled as long as the school closures are in effect. 

 The Parish School of Religion Classes has been canceled for the rest of the year.

 Lectors and Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion should contact Angie Dillon or call the Parish Center office if they are unable to attend Mass.

During the extended closure of the school, the Parish Center Office will be open only from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.  If additional changes are needed, we will update our parishioners and parents through our website, social media channels and the local media.

1:13 p.m. City of Mansfield Income Tax Office closing to public, effective Monday

Due to concerns for public health, the City of Mansfield Income Tax office will be closed to the public, effective Monday March 16, until further notice.

Finance Director Linn Steward encourage taxpayers to mail their Mansfield tax returns. There is a very helpful interactive return that provides instructions and calculations that can be found on the city website. To find any Income Tax information just click the yellow box on the left of the city homepage E-File/Tax Forms. There is also an option to E-file.

Tax Forms will be available on the 1st floor of the Mansfield Municipal Building and are available to print out on the city website. The filing deadline is April 15, 2020 without a federal extension. If the IRS extends the federal due date without an extension past April 15th the City of Mansfield will do the same. The Income Tax Department staff can be reached by telephone at 419-755-9711 7:30 am to 4:00 pm Monday through Friday.

1:12 p.m. City of Mansfield suspends recreational activities

Although Richland County does not have a confirmed case of COVID-19 we are taking precautionary measures to reduce the risk of COVID-19 at your public facilities.

Effective today March 12, all City of Mansfield recreational activities and programs will be suspended until further notice. This includes, but is not limited to, all family craft nights, art in the park, Park Runs being held in the pavilion at North Lake Park, park pavilion rentals and any and all Ocie Hill activities and events. Activities and events may change as we continue to evaluate what is in the best interest of public health. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the Parks office at 419-522-9801.

We will continue to monitor this situation as Governor DeWine and the Ohio Department of Health provide daily updates. Any changes to this policy will be release immediately to members of the public.

We thank you for your patience and we urge everyone to take their own precautionary measures to ensure the well-being of your health and the entire Mansfield community.

1 p.m. Little Buckeye Children's Museum to close March 13, 2 p.m.

After careful consideration, and in collaboration with our Board of Directors, the Governor, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Department of Health, and other business operations, the decision has been made to close Little Buckeye Children's Museum due to the current global health crisis, and with concern for the health and safety of our patrons and staff, effective at 2 p.m. on Friday, March 13, 2020.

The museum will remain closed until further notice, and decisions for re-opening will be made based on guidance from the CDC and the Ohio Department of Health.

All private parties and group trips scheduled before Monday, March 30, 2020 will be canceled effective immediately. If you have a party or group trip scheduled before March 30th, we will be in touch with you today, March 13, to determine your desired course of action, either a full refund or rescheduling at a later date.

We care deeply about the health and safety of our guests, as well as our team members, and feel this is in the best interest of everyone. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. Thank you for understanding-- your continued support means the world to us.

12:30 p.m. The 2020 Mid-Ohio Home Show has been cancelled

12:20 p.m. YMCA adjusting operations, policies and staffing models

Attention Y Members, Guests, Participants and Staff:

The YMCA Board of Directors and leadership team has been monitoring the ever-changing dynamics of the COVID-19 virus and listening to the advice of Federal, State and Local government and health officials. Based on what we learn, we will be making regular adjustments to our policies, operations and staffing models.

Many of the operational decisions we are making are in alignment with the idea of “flattening the curve” of the virus spread so that our hospital systems can be responsive to those who are sick in a timely and reasonable manner. We have a role to play in slowing the virus spread while serving the community in a healthy way.

Thank you for your patience and commitment as we monitor and respond to this health crisis.

IMMEDIATE CHANGES TAKING PLACE

Based on what we have learned from health and government officials and other YMCA’s, we are making policy and operational changes to prevent the spread of illness. At this time, our YMCA will remain open. Our child care programs (Infant – Pre-K) will also remain open.

The following are operational changes effective Saturday, March 14 at 6 a.m.

• Beginning Saturday, March 14, all group fitness classes and programming, including but not limited to youth sports, all chronic disease classes, swim lessons, water fitness, free and paid group fitness classes, will be cancelled for the remainder of the month.

• Sales of YMCA Guest passes will be prohibited through the end of the month.

• Y Members bringing guests is prohibited through the end of the month.

• Sauna and Steam room will remain closed through the end of the month.

• Our Child Care centers (Infant – Pre-K) will remain OPEN with these exceptions:

o Immediate family only for pick-up/drop-off

o No outside visitors or volunteers for programming allowed

o Children will not have access to the YMCA gymnasium and pool.

12:15 p.m. The Crawford Partnership postpones 2020 State of the Vision

We have decided to postpone State of the Vision 2020 until further notice. After careful consideration, we believe this is in the best interest of our attendees, vendors, and the community as a whole. We hope to reschedule SOV for later this spring but will take into consideration the ongoing prevention and response recommendations from local, state, and national authorities.

We are offering the option to hold your registration for the rescheduled date (to be determined), as well as the option to cancel your registration. Please email the Crawford Partnership partnership@crawfordpartnership.org or call our office at 419-563-1809 to let us know how you would like to proceed no later than Friday, April 3. If no action is taken, we will default to carrying your registration to the backup date for now.

Our team is working diligently to postpone and modify our planning and preparation for the event, we appreciate your patience as we work to keep public health and community safety our top priority.

More information on COVID-19 can be found on these websites: https://odh.ohio.gov or https://www.cdc.gov. We’ll communicate additional information and our plans to reschedule as soon as possible.

For more information please contact the Crawford Partnership by email partnership@crawfordpartnership.org or call 419-563-1809.

11:47 a.m. The Shelby Senior Center cancels events

The Shelby Senior Center will be cancelling all activities from Tuesday, March 17 through April 6 with the exception of March 17 voting.

11:08 a.m. Mosaic Mansfield cancels services, events

As many of you know, yesterday afternoon Gov. DeWine issued an order to ban all gatherings of over 100 people. While this ban does not apply to churches, we certainly believe it to be prudent, wise and responsible for us to follow his recommendation with abundant consideration for not only our fellow broken pieces, but each of the communities from which we gather every Sunday. We are called to follow Jesus in his concern for the marginalized, the weak, and the vulnerable and we feel that by ceasing to gather for a short season, we can best embody these commands of love.

Services: While we won’t be gathering in person for the foreseeable future, we will continue to gather together digitally for a time of worship and time spent in God’s word. Our livestream will be at its usual time, and our notes will be available online. You can find the stream on our Facebook every Sunday morning at 9:00am or catch it at a more convenient time for you and your family on our Facebook pages as well as our website at Mosaicmansfield.com/watch.

Other Events: This also means, for the time being, that all other Mosaic-related events and gatherings whether within the church or in homes are canceled. This includes our upcoming Marriage Event, Financial Peace University Classes, Small Groups, Ping Pong, Art Night, and Meals. 

This situation is constantly evolving and we will be striving to adjust as we receive more information. So keep your eyes peeled for updates as we make adjustments.

Prayer/Support: Thankfully, we live in a time where care, communication and prayer can happen even at a distance. We will be checking in on everyone as we are able and certainly invite you to submit any requests for prayer online via our website. mosaicmansfield.com/prayer

11 a.m. MRCPL Locations remain open with restricted services

As concerns about COVID-19 grow, Mansfield/Richland County Public Library is following the guidance of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and taking precautions to make sure our staff and customers are safe and healthy.

We have reached out to local public health officials at the Richland Public Health and are monitoring advisories from the Ohio Department of Health.

As of 10 a.m. today, March 13, all nine of our library locations (link to https://www.mrcpl.org/branches) are open for normal business hours. In addition, our First Call 211 services are open as usual for emergency assistance. We are practicing recommended social distancing, encouraging frequent hand washing, and request that you stay home if you are ill.

All in-person Library programming events are currently canceled through April 3.

In addition, all meeting and study rooms at all locations will be closed through April 3 in order to prevent the transmission of illness. You cannot reserve a meeting room to use between now and April 3. We will reassess the situation at that time, so please stay tuned for more details by checking our COVID-19 information page https://www.mrcpl.org/covid-19.

Our Library branches are cleaned regularly. We have also added disinfectant wiping of all high-touch surfaces (door handles, self-check stations, computer keyboards, etc.) to our cleaning procedures. As an added level of precaution, we have temporarily removed all toys, puzzles, games, etc. from our public areas to ensure we can regularly clean those spaces.

We encourage customers to wash their hands immediately upon entering the Library (or use hand sanitizer) and again after using Library computers or any other high-touch surfaces.

We want to reinforce that if you are not feeling well, you need to stay home. All residents should implement the personal prevention protection methods used to prevent flu and other infectious diseases as recommended by the CDC:

● Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; dry hands with a clean towel or air-dry hands.

● Use alcohol-based hand sanitizer when soap and water are unavailable.

● Cover your mouth with a tissue or sleeve when sneezing or coughing.

● Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.

● Stay home when you are sick.

● Avoid contact with people who are sick.

As the public health situation changes hourly, we commit to keeping you informed of any changes to our scheduled events.

Since Mansfield Richland County Public Library's opening in 1889, the first 700 books, and the first set of the Congressional Record, the library has been a source for free access to knowledge, information, and resources in Mansfield. That will never change. We are a bridge connecting people to the knowledge and resources they might not otherwise have access to.

In the global and digital age, we also recognize the importance of being rooted in our community offering innovative resources, programming, and events specifically for our customers. Through our interactive website, www.mrcpl.org, we are now able to provide access to resources for our library card holders 24/7 in

addition to our 9 traditional locations. MRCPL is a center for people of all ages to come together to

have fun, learn, grow, craft, seek knowledge and understanding, connect, and engage!

9:30 a.m. Pathway Training for Partners postponed

United Way of North Central Ohio has announced that Pathway Training for Partners has been postponed. However, the application period will open as planned.

In order to help protect the health of the community and in compliance with the executive order issued today by Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, we are postponing our Pathway to Funding: How Donor Dollars Lead to Change training meetings. The meetings were scheduled in Marion County for March 23, in Wyandot County for March 24, and in Crawford County for March 25, and will be rescheduled when possible.

The 2020-2021 Community Partner Grant application period will open on March 16, as planned. The online application will be available at unitedwaynco.org.

Recognizing the additional stress and time constraints that partner and prospective partner agencies are under as they respond to the outbreak, we are working to extend the application period without repercussions to the funding cycle. We’ll be posting a new application/funding cycle timeline as soon as it is finalized.

9:15 a.m. Neos Dance Theatre suspends programs

Neos Dance Theatre has suspended programs due to COVID-19 precautions and Ohio State mandates to limit large gatherings.

March 12, 2020 Neos Dance Theatre has postponed two public performances scheduled for March 21 in Ashland and March 28 in Mansfield.

In Ashland, Ohio M.A.D.E. in Ashland was to premiere on March 21 at Archer Auditorium. In Mansfield, Ohio Carmina Burana was set for March 28 at the Renaissance Theatre. Both will be rescheduled if possible.

As a small non-profit arts organization with a company of young dancers, Neos is asking ticket holders to considering donating their tickets back to the organization and making an additional tax-deductible donation. Donations can be made at neosdancetheare.org/support.

Classes at Neos Center for Dance in Oberlin are canceled and tentatively slated to resume April 3.

Neos encourages all participants, students, collaborators, donors, sponsors, and audience members to check out www.neosdancetheatre.org, Facebook page Neos Dance Theatre, and E-mail for updates.

For immediate questions and concerns, contact info@neosdancetheatre.org.

Thursday, March 12 

9:15 p.m. -- Coronavirus update from Catholic Bishops of Ohio

Dear Friends in Christ,

This afternoon, Governor Mike DeWine issued an executive order regarding the avoidance of large mass gatherings to help limit the spread of COVID-19 in Ohio.

Even though religious gatherings are expressly excluded in the order, the Catholic bishops of Ohio, out of concern for the common good and the physical as well as spiritual well-being of all of the people of Ohio, have agreed to cooperate with the governor's direction to create "social distance."

To that end, we dispense the Catholic faithful who reside in Ohio and all other Catholics currently in Ohio from the obligation of attending Sunday Mass for the weekends of March 14-15, March 21-22 and March 28-29.

Out of charity and concern for our brothers and sisters in Christ, we encourage all the faithful, in particular those who are sick, experiencing symptoms of illness, or are at risk of illness seriously to consider refraining from Mass attendance.

As much as possible, we would like to see parish Mass schedules remain unchanged to allow the faithful to offer worship to almighty God and receive the great grace of the sacraments during this trying time; however, we recognize that this may not be possible because many of our senior priests may themselves be at risk. We ask for understanding and flexibility in this regard.

Please join us in praying for all who are suffering from illness or disease of any kind, and for an easing of the tension caused by this situation. May Our Lady of Lourdes, Health of the Sick and Mother of Mercy, intercede for us, and may the Holy Spirit continue to guide and protect us all.

Respectfully,

Most Rev. Dennis M. Schnurr, chairman, Catholic Conference of Ohio, Archbishop of Cincinnati

Most Rev. Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Archdiocese of Cincinnati

Most Rev. Robert J. Brennan, Bishop of Columbus

Most Rev. Jeffrey Monforton, Bishop of Steubenville

Most Rev. George V. Murry, S.J., Bishop of Youngstown

Rev. Donald P. Oleksiak, Diocesan Administrator of Cleveland

Most Rev. Daniel E. Thomas, Bishop of Toledo

7:30 p.m. -- Richland Academy Rade Show 2020 update

The health and safety of Richland Academy of the Arts students, families, staff and faculty is our highest priority. We are closely monitoring updates from the CDC. We are also heeding the advice of local and state health and governmental officials as this situation evolves.

Based on their recommendations and expertise the rade show 2020 will proceed with audience restrictions as stated by Governor Mike DeWine this afternoon concerning mass gatherings:

We appreciate the fact that OSU at Mansfield is allowing us to continue our performance with the following exceptions:

The only audience members permitted to attend include those providing transportation of their dancer or immediate family

LIVE Streaming of the performance on Richland Academy & OSU-Mansfield Facebook pages will be available Saturday, March 14 at 7:00pm

DVD’s of the performance will be available for purchase

We will make every effort to provide students with the opportunity to perform this show with a live audience at a later date.

 We would like to thank OSU at Mansfield Dean Norman Jones, Dr. Joe Fahey- Theatre Department Chair and Seth Morrison- technical support for their assistance. Finally, thank you to our families for your patience.

Friday, March 13, we will re-assess our class schedule and keep families and the public up to date with information.

If you purchased tickets for this performance, please see the refund options below:

Please consider my refund a donation to Richland Academy of the Arts

I would like my ticket purchase to be credited to a future performance

I would like to receive a refund via check (any online fees charged by TuTuTix will not be refunded)

(In order to process any of the above requests, please fill out the attached document below and email it to pmadore@richlandacademy.com)

For more information regarding updates please visit richlandacademy.com or contact us at 419-522-8224 or info@richlandacademy.com.

6:48 p.m. -- Ohio bans mass gatherings of more than 100

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine today announced Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton, M.D., MPH has signed an order to prohibit mass gatherings in the state of Ohio.

Mass gatherings are defined as any event or convening that brings together 100 or more persons in a single room or single space at the same time such as an auditorium, stadium, arena, large conference room, meeting hall, theater, or any other confined indoor or outdoor space.

This would include parades, fairs, and festivals.

Mass gatherings does not include normal operations of airports, bus and train stations, medical facilities, libraries, shopping malls and centers, or other spaces where 100 or more persons may be in transit. It also does not include typical office environments, schools, restaurants, factories, or retail/grocery stores where large numbers of people are present, but it is unusual for them to be within arm’s length of one another.

This order will take effect immediately and will remain until the state of emergency declared by the governor has been rescinded or modified.

Other announcements made today by Governor DeWine:

At the urging of the nursing home industry, the Ohio Department of Health will soon update its current order limiting visitors to nursing and assisted living homes to reflect that no visitors will be admitted.

Fore more information on Ohio’s response to COVID-19, visit coronavirus.ohio.gov or call 1-833-4-ASK-ODH.

4:12 p.m. - The Kiwanis Joe Zuber Pancake Day postponed

The Kiwanis Joe Zuber Pancake Day on Saturday, March 14 has been postponed. Please save your tickets for a future day to be announced.

4:03 p.m. - Renaissance Theatre cancels events

Following the Executive Order of Governor Mike DeWine, the Renaissance Theatre will cancel the following events beginning March 12, 2020: Rock of Ages (March 14-15), Mansfield Symphony Orchestra “Mash-up” (March 21), and Mansfield Symphony Youth Strings “Spring Concert” (March 22). 

The Renaissance will be working on rescheduling these events. The Renaissance will also be contacting all current ticket holders to personally discuss their options and give them information on the rescheduling of the performance.

For up-to-date information on these and other events, please go to RenTickets.org or follow the Renaissance on Facebook and Instagram. As with most industries, phone calls and email volumes are up dramatically, so we ask for your patience as we work to address everyone's needs. We also ask that you hold off on inquiries and requests that are not time-sensitive.

3:42 p.m. - Northwest Ohio Scholarship Fun extends deadline

In light of the current state of the country and the pending EdChoice legislation, the Northwest Ohio Scholarship Fund has extended its waiting list application deadline to Friday, May 29, 2020 for the 2020-2021 school year. NOSF awards need-based scholarships for private school tuition and homeschool expenses for grades K-8. To learn more go to https://nosf.org/ or To Apply https://nosf.org/i-want-apply

2:33 p.m. - Lexington cancels parent-teacher conferences

Lexington Local Schools is canceling parent teacher conferences preK-12 scheduled for tonight 3-12-20.

2:32 p.m. - Business Expo cancelled

After much thought and consideration, the Richland Area Chamber & Economic Development has decided to cancel the 2020 Business Expo, the Expo Eve After Hours, as well as the Lunchwise Wednesday luncheon scheduled for March 19, 2020. This is out of an abundance of caution.

We love the work we do here, and we believe in the importance and value of it – but it is not worth the risk. We will continue to monitor the situation and make announcements about additional events when or if there is a need. (Of course, we will refund those who registered.) - President Jodie Perry

2:04 p.m. -- Ashland University student reports testing negative for COVID-19

An Ashland University student who public health officials identified as a Person Under Investigation for COVID-19 has reported to the University that the test result was negative.

The student was part of a group of AU students who attended last month’s Conservative Political Action Conference event in National Harbor, Maryland. One of the CPAC attendees – not an AU student – later tested positive for the virus.

The student was the only one in the AU group who became symptomatic. The others, who also were contacted by the Ashland County Health Department, followed the guidelines for self-quarantine.

None of the students in the group is currently on campus.

11:38 a.m. - Sherrod Brown closes D.C. office

U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown’s (D-OH) office released a statement following media reports that a Senate staffer has tested positive for COVID-19:

"The health and safety of Ohioans is Senator Brown’s highest priority – that’s why after learning that a staff member in another Senate office tested positive for coronavirus, Senator Brown will join Governor DeWine in leading by example, temporarily closing his Washington D.C. office. Brown and his staff will work remotely to continue to serve Ohioans. The Senate Sergeant at Arms will close the entire Capitol complex to outside visitors today to protect them from the spread of the virus. Senator Brown and his office are following the recommendations of the CDC, D.C. Health Department, and Ohio Department of Health to practice social distancing, and will be self-monitoring. Neither Brown nor his staff are experiencing symptoms at this time." 

Brown’s physical D.C. office will remain closed until further notice but open to serve Ohioans by phone, and will be in consistent contact with the Senate’s Attending Physician and medical authorities to determine when it is appropriate to reopen the office.

10:52 a.m. - 2020 OSU Mansfield Alumni Awards event suspended

The 2020 Alumni Awards: Success Mansfield 2020 event, which was scheduled for Friday, March 20 at Westbrook Country Club, has been suspended. The health and well-being of our Ohio State Buckeyes and friends are of the utmost importance, and in light of the coronavirus outbreak, we have chosen to suspend the event. Refunds will be provided via the original method of payment to those who registered for the event. For additional information contact: Kristen Traynor-Mytko at 419-755-4053 or email traynor-mytko.1@osu.edu

10:50 a.m. - Crawford County postpones Sports Hall of Fame banquet

Because of concerns over the coronavirus, the Crawford County Sports Hall of Fame Induction Banquet, scheduled to be held March 28, 2020, is being postponed until further notice. Reserved tickets and purchased tickets will be honored at a later date, TBD. We would rather be safe than sorry.

10:37 a.m. - United Way cancels annual dinner

Due to the continued impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and in order to ensure everyone’s safety in the community, the United Way of Richland County is canceling its Annual Dinner that was due to be held today at 5 p.m. at Mid-Ohio Conference Center. Any refund inquiries should be made with the United Way of Richland County.