More COVID-19 restrictions expected to be lifted Friday
Published 10:03 am Wednesday, March 10, 2021
Warren County has seen a dramatic drop in new COVID-19 cases in recent weeks, so much so, that local leaders are considering removing more restrictions on businesses and organizations as soon as Friday.
Mayor George Flaggs Jr. said he would announce the full details of the city’s revised civil emergency orders during a press conference Friday, but he is considering removing additional restrictions from bars, restaurants, gyms and more.
“At this point, though, we will likely keep the mask mandate in place for a bit longer,” Flaggs said, noting that next week marks spring break for all of the county’s schools.
Tuesday, the Vicksburg Warren School District and Porter’s Chapel Academy both reported no COVID-19 activity within their classrooms last week. For VWSD, it marked the first time since late September that they had not reported any virus activity or need to quarantine students or teachers due to possible exposure.
The city’s current civil emergency order, which is set to expire April 15 unless amended by the Board of Mayor and Aldermen — which is expected — does require anyone entering a business or public building to wear a mask or face covering. Warren County has a similar order which is set to expire on April 5.
With new case numbers remaining low — with the exception of an unexplained spike Thursday when 20 new cases were reported — Warren County has seen a good start to March’s numbers. Through Wednesday, the county had reported just 22 cases. Thursday’s report pushed that number to 42.
The downward trend in cases also comes at a time when the number of residents who have received either one or two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine continues to climb. As of Thursday, state health officials reported that nearly 14,000 doses of the vaccine have been administered to Warren County residents — which outpaces many neighboring counties. And, with the increasing availability of the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine, the number of residents having access to and receiving full vaccination will continue to climb.
“Getting the vaccine out is job number one,” Dr. Dan Edney, the state’s chief medical officer said. “The vaccination is how we are going to get ourselves out of this pandemic.”