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Testing continues in Delta County

ESCANABA — Delta County was still free of confirmed coronavirus cases as of Tuesday afternoon, according to county officials.

Delta County Administrator Emily DeSalvo said Public Health, Delta and Menominee Counties has submitted two dozen specimens from Delta County to a state lab for testing.

“There are 24 people in Delta County (that) have been tested,” she said.

Out of the specimens submitted to the state lab, 10 have tested negative for the virus. Tests for the remaining 14 are pending.

In a previous report issued Friday regarding coronavirus, Delta County officials stated 15 specimens from the county had been submitted for testing by Public Health.

As commercial and private labs are now capable of testing for coronavirus, the press release stated more Delta County residents may have pending tests than the county is aware of. Any providers using a private lab for coronavirus tests were encouraged to submit information to Public Health.

Officials also issued a reminder that – while the numbers it listed were accurate as of Tuesday afternoon – these numbers could change at any time since test results continue to be processed.

In other coronavirus-related business in Delta County, DeSalvo said the county has been temporarily altering its operations in keeping with Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s “Stay Home, Stay Safe” executive order, which went into effect Tuesday.

“We are abiding by the governor’s new executive order,” she said.

The executive order requires activities in Michigan not necessary to sustain or protect life to be temporarily suspended.

A number of Delta County departments classified as “essential” will continue serving the public on a limited basis. These departments include:

– County Clerk’s Office/Register of Deeds

– Administration/Finance

– Treasurer’s Office

– Child Advocacy Center

– Veteran’s Services

– Delta County Airport

– Maintenance/Housekeeping

– Emergency Management

– Prosecutor’s Office/Victim’s Services

– Delta County Sheriff’s Office/Jail/Road Patrol/Search and Rescue

Other county departments, including Equalization/Building and Zoning, are officially closed. However, DeSalvo said even these departments are still helping the public to some extent.

“I know the department head is still coming in and answering calls and emails,” she said of the Equalization/Building and Zoning department.

In both closed and open departments, as well as all county courts, DeSalvo said county employees who can provide their services remotely are doing so.

“We are following the governor’s order and we are having them work from home,” she said.

Along with these changes, Delta County is suspending some services considered “nonessential” at this time, including marriage license applications and CPL certifications. The county hopes to reintroduce these services after Gov. Whitmer’s executive order expires, which is set to happen at 11:59 p.m. on Monday, April 13.

“We have our fingers crossed that at that time we would be able to reopen and conduct business as normal,” DeSalvo said.

In the meantime, DeSalvo urged Delta County residents to follow the executive order.

“Protect (your) family and your health at this time,” she said.

Delta County plans to issue press releases with up-to-date information on the coronavirus pandemic every Tuesday and Friday afternoon. For more information on coronavirus in Michigan, visit www.michigan.gov/coronavirus.

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