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As of Tuesday evening, there are now 519 confirmed cases of the new coronavirus spread across 15 Maine counties, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
Two new deaths were reported by the Maine CDC Tuesday, leaving the total loss of life at 12. Additionally, 99 Maine residents who have been hospitalized with COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus, while another 176 people have fully recovered from it.
Here’s the latest on the coronavirus and its impact in Maine.
—At a 2 p.m. press conference, Gov. Janet Mills said that the coronavirus will likely force the state to delay the congressional and legislative primaries that were scheduled for June 9 while eyeing July 14 as her preferred date for a rescheduled election.
—As the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the state keeps rising, arenas in Portland and Bangor will host the state’s first temporary medical units to treat people for the new coronavirus and expand the health care system’s capacity.
— A southern Maine town wants the state to disclose the addresses of people who have tested positive for COVID-19 so its emergency service providers can serve them better and protect themselves against it. Currently, the state only identifies cases by gender, age range and county.
Watch: Why the Maine CDC breaks down coronavirus cases by county, not town
—A new federal program guaranteeing loans to small businesses, which was co-authored by Sen. Susan Collins, looks to be days away from exhaustion. Collins has called for at least $200 billion more to be added.
—Frontline health care workers across Maine fear that the worst is still ahead. We talked with 13 health care professionals about their anxieties, their predictions, and the bright spots that they’ve seen so far.
—Health care workers aren’t the only ones worried about the coming weeks and months. Maine as a whole is planning for a worst-case coronavirus scenario, and it’s hard to predict what happens next.
—Growing numbers of renters, both commercial and residential, are struggling to pay rent as the economic impact of the pandemic continues to be felt in Maine. Gov. Janet Mills plans to issue an executive order to ban some evictions, saying that “this is not the right time for any landlords to be evicting anybody.”
—Another economic consequence of coronavirus is a record number of Mainers filing for unemployment. The surge of applications crashed the state system that is designed to make payments on the first of the week. Labor officials say the system has been upgraded to handle more claims, but added that payments could still be delayed.
—Thousands of flights across the U.S. have been cancelled due to the pandemic, and many passengers are attempting to get their tickets refunded. Airline passengers whose flights are canceled or significantly delayed should receive refunds, the Department of Transportation has said in a statement, but don’t count on your money back just yet.
— Grieving families in Maine, with family members lost to both COVID-19 and other causes, are finding it difficult to mourn their loved ones with current social distancing protocols and bans on large gatherings.
—With all the fear and apprehension in the air right now, a group of people in Camden decided to try and lift people’s spirits. The iconic Mt. Battie star is shining bright, even though it’s April. This is the first time in 54 years that the star has been on display outside of the holiday season.
— Globally, there have been 1,413,415 confirmed cases of the coronavirus and 81,200 deaths. The US has 386,817 confirmed cases with 4,009 deaths in New York City alone, according to John Hopkins University. In New England, New Hampshire has had 715 cases and 9 deaths; Vermont has 575 cases and 23 deaths; Massachusetts has 15,202 cases and 356 deaths; Connecticut has 7,781 cases and 277 deaths; and Rhode Island has 1,082 and 27 deaths, according to the New York Times.
Watch: Maine CDC, Gov. Janet Mills press conference, April 7