Ricketts Tells Town Hall Broadcast He May Know By May When COVID-19 Limits End

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) – Governor Pete Ricketts, Chief State Medical Officer Dr Gary Anthone, and state Education Commissioner Matthew Blomstedt joined NET, Nebraska’s public television and radio system, Thursday night for an hour-long tv/radio Town Hall on the coronavirus.

All 3 offered a combination of explanations, recommendations, and current best-guess estimates on a variety of aspects of the fight to slow the spread of the disease, “flatten the curve” for short.

Ricketts ended the show with a realistic but generally upbeat appraisal of where the state stands

As for when such moves as the 10-person gathering limit, bans on dining-in at restaurant bars, and social distancing recommendation will be lifted, Ricketts said he hoped to have a clear idea by May.

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The governor issued 2 new COVID-19 executive orders yesterday. One is intended to help restaurants and bars, among some of the hardest-hit businesses. It allows them to sell pre-made cocktails and other alcoholic beverages as long as they are sealed with a lid.

The other order expands access to childcare options during the pandemic – activating nonprofits, faith-based organizations, and schools to help provide the care that Ricketts says families need now.

It eases the licensing requirements to open and operate a temporary, non-residential child care in an alternative setting and will remain in effect until 30 days after the governor lifts the current COVID-19 state of emergency.

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