The Atlanta Journal-Constitution is committed to providing our readers with the most comprehensive coverage of the deadly coronavirus.
This blog will be updated throughout Friday, March 20, with news and details of COVID-19 in Georgia.
1:45 p.m.: The piecemeal approach cities are taking to impose restrictions
1:30 p.m.: The Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation announced $5.4 million in funding for immediate and long-term recovery assistance to organizations providing support in Georgia and Montana to the COVID-19 global pandemic, the organization announced Friday. The AJC Sports team has the story.
1 p.m.: It started a few weeks ago with what state Sen. Brandon Beach figured was a bout with recurring sinus problems. It ended with a coronavirus diagnosis that triggered calls for the entire Georgia legislative branch to self-quarantine. Greg Bluestein talks with the senator.
1 p.m.: Fulton County Schools gave out more than 30,000 meals over two days this week at six sites, but the district has now decided to expand the program to 21 locations. Ben Brasch has the details.
11:45 a.m.: U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s announcement that Americans have an extra three months to file their income taxes is good news for some Georgians, but it could deal a temporary blow to already iffy state finances. James Salzer tells you how the state could be affected.
11:30 a.m.: Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms has drafted an administrative order that effectively allows restaurants and bars to sell alcohol through takeout and delivery service, according to a tweet she posted Friday morning. Stephen Deere has the details.
10:15 a.m.: The DeKalb library system decided last week to close all of its branches due to the spreading virus. To make up for the closures, J.D. Capelouto reports, librarians are now hosting “virtual storytime” every weekday on Facebook Live.
8:30 a.m.: With a little less than two weeks to go on Gov. Brian Kemp’s mandate that schools stay closed until March 31 to stave off the spread of the coronavirus, metro Atlanta school districts are putting plans in place to go into next month. Arlinda Smith Broady has the details.
7:30 a.m.: New national statistics show that despite Georgia seeing a nearly 50% increase in cases Thursday, 29 states had a higher percentage increase in confirmed cases, with New York’s 2,870 cases making up nearly half of the new cases in the U.S.
7 a.m.: Arielle Kass reports Gwinnett County is delaying some tax collections in response to the coronavirus outbreak, so companies can have more cash on hand as many businesses struggle.
6:30 a.m.: As the death toll and cases rise in Georgia, the coronavirus outbreak has forced Atlanta’s police force to rethink how they function and interact with the public. That includes cleaning workspaces, having nonessential staff work from home, and forgoing vacation time, Raisa Habersham reports.
- A sharp escalation in coronavirus deaths and illnesses signals that Georgia is entering a dangerous new phase of the outbreak, Alan Judd reported. State officials said Thursday that 10 Georgians have died from COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus — an increase of six since the previous day. In addition, the state medical examiner’s office said it is investigating five other deaths that may be linked to the pandemic.
- Days after the Athens-Clarke County Commission declared a state of emergency due to the coronavirus pandemic, the city enacted an even more extensive order — a mandatory “shelter in place” policy, Zachary Hansen reported.
- Rapper Lecrae helps install sinks so homeless Atlantans can wash hands
- THURSDAY’S TOP STORIES
- U.S. Rep. Drew Ferguson is under self-quarantine until March 27
- The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Georgia increased to 287, with 10 deaths
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