Regional COVID-19 updates: 1 death in Oregon, 43 more cases

Coronavirus

Updates for Oregon and SW Washington for April 27, 2020

This story will be updated throughout the day

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Here is the latest information from April 27, 2020, in Oregon and Southwest Washington in the ongoing coronavirus pandemic:

Oregon reports 1 new COVID-19 death

A 91-year-old woman from Washington County has died from the coronavirus. The Oregon Health Authority reported that she first tested positive for the virus on April 17, and later passed away on Saturday, April 25th. Her death marks the state’s 92nd fatality from the coronavirus.

Additionally, the OHA reported that 43 more people have been diagnosed with the virus. Those cases were discovered in the following counties: Coos (2), Deschutes (2), Linn (5), Malheur (1), Marion (11), Multnomah (12), Washington (9), Yamhill (1).

Washington cases continue to rise

On Monday, the Washington state Department of Health reported that the state’s death toll from the coronavirus had reached 765. That figure had climbed by 16 since Sunday’s report.

Additionally, cases of the virus in the state rose by 165, reaching 13,686 in total.

Oregon City Commission approves relief grants

On Monday, the Oregon City Commission approved $200,000 in small business relief grants to help curb the financial impacts of the coronavirus. The grant funding will come from the city’s general fund and will go to eligible small businesses within city limits.

Businesses that have been in operation for at least one full year, with up to 15 full-time employees (including the owners) that can prove loss of income due to the pandemic will be eligible to receive funds. Any business that is eligible for the program can get up to $3,000 in reimbursement grants.

The city will begin accepting applications on Monday, May 4 at 9 a.m., and funds will be dispersed on a first-come-first-serve basis.

BOLI adds unpaid furlough days for management

In anticipation of impending budget woes due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Bureau of Labor and Industries announced on Monday it will be instituting one unpaid furlough day per month for managers within the agency. The furlough days will last through June of 2021, which is the end of the current budget cycle.

The Labor Commissioner said in a statement that the bureau will have a better idea of future budget cuts needed after the May budget forecast.

“In any scenario, I will continue to prioritize service to Oregonians – to workers who are wronged or face discrimination or harassment; to employers who need guidance; and to apprenticeship programs that will be critical as we rebuild our economy when the time comes,” said Labor Commissioner Val Hoyle in a statement on the state budget.

Portland State University executives to take pay cut

As the school sees significant revenue losses in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, Portland State University’s top executives will be reducing their salaries.

On May 1, Interim President Stephen Percy will take a 15% pay cut for the next six months. Other senior executives like vice presidents, general counsel, deans, vice provosts and the athletics director will take reductions ranging from 7.5% to 10% of their salaries.

“I am deeply grateful for the extraordinary commitment and energy that everyone at PSU is investing to support our students and our institution throughout this crisis,” said Percy in a statement released on Monday. 

Emergency Household Stabilization program shut down after 30 minutes

The program aimed to assist Oregonians who’ve lost income due to the COVID-19 pandemic stopped taking applications less than an hour into its launch.

Qualified households were able to submit an application beginning Monday at 10 a.m. However, about 30 minutes into the process, officials with the COVID-19 Emergency Household Stabilization Funds could no longer take on any new cases due to the high volume of applicants.

Continue reading: Emergency Household Stabilization Fund closes in less than an hour

Timberline offers ‘Season Pass Credit’ for following season

Timberline announced Monday it is offering a Season Pass Credit for those who had their ski and snowboard seasons cut short.

The resort said the credit can be applied to 2020/21 Timberline or Fusion Season Pass products.

The credit will not be in effect until Season Passes go on sale in September. Confirmation of the credits will be emailed to 2019/20 pass holders “in the coming weeks,” according to Timberline.

Salem Health Foundation receives $10,000 donation

The Salem Health Foundation received a $10,000 donation from the Oregon Community Credit Union to provide support for those on the front lines. The money will go towards meals, training and access to stress management tools.

“This is a heartening example of support,” said Jim Bauer, Salem Health chief development officer. “This gift will go directly to efforts that support health care employees.”

Pink Flamingos pop up

You may have noticed pink flamingos popping up in spots around Portland. On Monday, they were spotted wearing masks outside Portland Adventist Hospital.

They’re the brainchild of a Portland business, Think Pink Flamingo Flocking

Rogue Ales & Spirits pivots to hand sanitizer

Rogue Ales & Spirits has alcohol and a still. They’ve partnered with Columbia Distributing to make hand sanitizer for first reponders and others who need it.

Rogue President Dharma Tamm said Columbia Distributing “donated beer for us to distill into hand sanitizer.”

“This is a win-win for everyone because we are able to turn excess beer into a life-saving product that is widely needed right now,” said Columbia Distributing Senior VP Mike Specht.

Rogue and Columbia’s ‘Helping Hand Hand Sanitizer’ is made by distilling donated beer and adding 80% ethanol, glycerin, hydrogen peroxide and distilled water and is available at
buy.rogue.com

Rogue Ales & Spirits is now using beer to make hand sanitizer, April 2020 (Courtesy: Rogue Ales & Spirits)

Emergency Household Stabilization Funds applications available Monday

Applications for the Emergency Household Stabilization Fund are available beginning Monday.

The applications for the Emergency Household Stabilization Fund will be available beginning at 10 a.m. The Portland Housing Bureau stated that $1 million has been reallocated to the COVID-19 Emergency Household Stabilization Fund for households that have seen income lost throughout the pandemic.

Limited cash assistance will be sent to at least 2,000 households to help cover various expenses such as groceries, rent, utilities, and medical expenses. Out of the fund, $200,000 will be available to the public, with $250 sent to each household through the application. Remaining funds will be distributed through internal resources, according to PHB.

Once the application goes live, people can apply online.

Continuing Coverage: Coronavirus

Updates from April 26, 2020

Oregon death toll creeps near 100

The Oregon Office of Emergency Management reported four new deaths Sunday related to the novel coronavirus. Additionally, 58 new cases were confirmed.

The new coronavirus cases were diagnosed in the following counties: Benton (1), Clackamas (3), Coos (4), Deschutes (2), Jefferson (1), Josephine (1) Linn (3), Marion (4), Multnomah (29), Polk (1), Umatilla (1), Washington (7), Yamhill (1). In total, the state has reported 2,311 cases of COVID-19.

Of the four recently reported deaths, two were residents of Multnomah County: a 70-year-old man and a 75-year-old woman.

A 93-year-old woman in Marion County succumbed to the virus on Saturday, April 25. She was diagnosed just the week before on April 18.

A 51-year-old man in Wasco County also died from the virus on Friday, April 24. The OHA said he first tested positive on April 19 and later passed at the Mid-Columbia Medical Center.

The state’s death toll from COVID-19 now sits at 91.

Washington cases, deaths continue to rise

On Sunday, Washington state’s Department of Health reported that a total of 13,521 cases of the coronavirus had been diagnosed in the state.

COVID-19 has claimed the lives of 749 Washington residents.

Of those reported figures, Clark County accounts for 297 cases and 18 deaths from the coronavirus. So far, Cowlitz County has only seen 39 cases and has zero reported deaths.

Gov. Brown apologizes for unemployment delays

Late Sunday morning, Governor Kate Brown took to Twitter to acknowledge the frustrations of the thousands of Oregonians who are struggling with their unemployment claims.

“I hear your frustration. I’m sorry for the delays,” Brown’s tweet read, in part.

In the two-part thread, the governor mentioned that the state’s Employment Department is currently processing “an unprecedented 333,700 applications.” The department has also increased staffing from 106 to 520 employees, with plans to hire almost 300 more.

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