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As of Tuesday morning, there are now 499 confirmed cases of the new coronavirus spread across 15 Maine counties, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
No new deaths were reported by the Maine CDC Monday, leaving the total loss of life at 10. Additionally, 92 Maine residents who have been hospitalized with COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus, while another 158 people have fully recovered from it.
Here’s the latest on the coronavirus and its impact in Maine.
— The Maine CDC will provide an update on the coronavirus in Maine later today. The BDN will livestream the briefing.
—Only one county — Piscataquis — has no confirmed cases of the virus, though it is likely there. The lack of confirmed cases is likely the result of the county’s low population density and the limited testing for the virus that has obscured the full extent of the coronavirus outbreak.
— A member of the Maine State Police has tested positive for COVID-19. The member’s duty included work at the Maine Turnpike Weigh Station in York, along the northbound lanes.
— A civilian employee at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Kittery died Sunday from complications associated with COVID-19, according to WGME. It was unclear whether the deceased was a Maine or New Hampshire resident, which would affect whether the employee was listed as a Maine or New Hampshire COVID-19 death.
— Bates College will hold its commencement online this year, the college’s president said Monday.
— A week after Maine’s annual commercial baby eel fishing season got under way, prices for the lucrative catch are the lowest they have been in the past 10 years. The start of Maine’s elver season this year was delayed to give state fishery officials time to work out new rules aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19
— Teachers have to present learning material differently for special-education students, because they don’t necessarily learn the way other students learn.
— Students studying respiratory therapy at Southern Maine Community College are getting some valuable on-the-job training because of the coronavirus.
—Bangor Schools, responding to parents overwhelmed by homeschooling and the grading involved, have moved to a simpler pass-fail system for all take-home work.
— “Wearing a mask does more to protect others than it does to protect you. Essentially, you should wear a mask in case you are carrying the coronavirus and don’t know it yet,” the BDN editorial board writes.
— The Maine Department of Health and Human Services office in Rockland is expected to open on Tuesday after it was closed Monday for a thorough sanitizing because an employee tested positive for COVID-19.
— Portland businesses are calling for a rent freeze after some landlords refuse to budge. As of Monday morning, many have signed onto a letter to the Portland City Council asking for a rent freeze as the coronavirus puts them in a difficult situation: Their businesses are closed, but they must pay rent unless they get reprieves from landlords.
— Mainers seeking unemployment will need to do so in an alphabetical fashion. The Maine Department of Labor said that it is taking the step due to “unprecedented numbers” of unemployment calls.
— In response to a growing concern that COVID-19 could be transmitted from humans to wildlife, the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife has decided to take extra precautions while handling wild animals and will temporarily cease handling any bats for research.
— “Getting a fair and accurate Census count is vital to supporting those in our communities who will struggle to make ends meet in the long shadow of our present crisis,” Robert W. Glover, an associate professor of political science and honors, and Kevin Fitzpatrick, a third-year political science student at the University of Maine, in today’s opinion guest column.
— Globally, there have been 1,359,358 confirmed cases of the coronavirus and 75,945 deaths. The US has 368,449 confirmed cases with 3,485 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 543 cases and 23 deaths; Massachusetts has 13,837 cases and 260 deaths; Connecticut has 6,906 cases and 206 deaths; and Rhode Island has 1,082 and 27 deaths, according to the New York Times.
Watch: Nirav Shah on whether you should use fabric masks