Stevens County goes two weeks without a confirmed COVID-19 case, Commission files request to enter Phase 2 of economic reopening

Staff Writer

The last confirmed case of COVID-19 in Stevens County was reported by Northeast Tri County health district on April 22, making today (May 6) two full weeks without a reported case in the county.

The Northeast Tri County Health District in partnership with the Stevens County Commission filed a request May 5 for a variance with the state Department of Health to allow Ferry, Pend Oreille and Stevens counties to move into Phase 2 of the economic reopening outlined by Gov. Jay Inslee.

Officials are hoping the application, which includes safety plans for treatment and containing new COVID-19 cases, will be signed off this week.

Although Stevens has not yet met the benchmark of having no new cases in three weeks that was set by Inslee to request a variance, the health district serves all three counties and Ferry has only had one case and Pend Oreille two, so officials were allowed to proceed. The last Stevens County case, the ninth, was reported April 22 and there has been one death from the disease.
The majority of counties in the state can move into Phase 2 on June 1, which there can be limited gatherings of no more than five people, limited non-essential travel, and in-store purchases at retail stores. In addition, hair salons and barbers can open, and restaurants can operate at 50% capacity with table sizes no larger than five.

Phase 1 began on May 5 with outdoor recreational activities like hunting, fishing, hiking and golfing resuming. Auto sales, landscaping, car washes, housecleaning and pet walking has resumed, along with existing construction under specific guidelines. Essential business are open and retail sales are curbside only, However, all gatherings are still prohibited and travel is limited to essential trips only.