City of Alexandria Provides COVID-19 Updates; Phase Three Begins; Small Businesses Receive ALX B2B Grants
For Immediate Release: July 1, 2020
The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) remind everyone that you are safest at home. Older adults, persons with underlying medical conditions, and pregnant women are at greater risk for severe disease and are advised to minimize potential exposures as much as possible. Please keep at least 6 feet of distance from others. Everyone is required to wear a face covering in most indoor public settings. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19.
Bar Areas Remain Closed as Phase Three Begins Today
As Virginia enters Phase Three of the Forward Virginia blueprint today, Executive Order 67 provides for an easing of some restrictions on individuals and businesses. While gatherings of up to 250 are now permitted, it is still important to maintain 6 feet of distance and wear face coverings when around others in public. Restaurants are now permitted to provide indoor dining as long as each party is seated at least 6 feet apart. Bar seats and congregating areas must remain closed except for through traffic. Virginians are still encouraged to continue teleworking from home if possible; wash their hands frequently; practice physical distancing; and get tested immediately if symptoms of COVID-19 are experienced.
What’s New for City Operations in Phase Three
City operations continue to resume in Phase Three, all with modifications consistent with guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to stop the spread of COVID-19.
Farmers’ Markets - Beginning July 4, farmers' markets in Alexandria will be permitted to resume on-site transactions, on-site food preparation and non-food vendors. Customers are strongly encouraged to wear face coverings and use pre-ordering and contactless payment options when available. Market Managers must continue to comply with the Operating Conditions and Market Set-up guidance, which are subject to change based on public health guidance.
Department of Recreation, Parks and Cultural Activities (RPCA) - Most RPCA programs are now operational, with modifications in accordance with Phase Three guidelines. Outdoor picnic shelters are now open and other amenities, such as playgrounds, are open with modifications to capacity and schedules. The Interactive Fountain at Potomac Yard Park remains closed in accordance with Phase Three guidance for interactive water play features. For additional information about phased recreation reopenings, visit alexandriava.gov/Recreation.
Libraries - Patrons may now place holds on items by logging in to their accounts at alexlibraryva.org and scheduling curbside pickup appointments. Staff-Assisted Materials Selection (SAMS) is a service available for specific materials requests that are unavailable through the online Library catalog. SAMS may be coordinated by phone or email. Libraries will be closed on Friday, July 3, in observance of Independence Day.
Alexandra Small Businesses to Receive $3.5 million from ALX B2B Grants Program
The Alexandria Economic Development Partnership (AEDP), in partnership with City government, will distribute $3.5 million in relief to more than 300 small businesses throughout Alexandria that were impacted by the economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Grants will range in amounts from $10,000 to $20,000, depending on the size of the business. AEDP will notify all applicants and list the grantees online. Applicants had the opportunity to self-report their race and ethnicity, and 38% of the recipients who volunteered the information identified as Hispanic or Latino, Black or African American, or Asian American. The City and AEDP are working on next steps for future rounds of this grant program and will continue outreach to minority, veteran, and women-owned businesses.
No New COVID-19 Cases and No New Fatalities Added in Alexandria
The cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in Alexandria is now 2,325, including 57 fatalities. Detailed data, including data on age, race and ethnicity, is available through links at alexandriava.gov/Coronavirus. The virus that causes COVID-19 is spread both by people who are symptomatic and by those who do not know that they are infected. Everyone is safest at home. This is especially true for those in high-risk populations (such as older adults, persons living in long-term care facilities, and those with serious underlying medical conditions). If you must go out, please maintain 6 feet of distance from others, wear a cloth face covering, and always carry hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol with you. Everyone must do their part to stop the spread.
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This news release is available at alexandriava.gov/116440.