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Potholes, litter, derelict cars, clogged guts, traffic lights – these are just a few of the things the territory’s island administrators deal with daily as the de facto mayors of the Virgin Islands.
The launch of a new screening program at the U.S. Virgin Island’s airports discovered one COVID-positive person traveling to St. Croix, according to officials. Since Sunday, a total of 34 tests have been conducted, officials said.
The U.S. Virgin Islands returned to the “safer at home” protocols on Tuesday, easing restrictions on non-essential businesses, restaurants, beaches, churches, private and parochial schools, but keeping in place restrictions on bars and hotel check-ins for leisure travelers.
While health officials believe the ongoing stay-at-home order has been “effective” in slowing the spread of the coronavirus, the territory’s overall COVID-19 positivity rate and the number of current hospitalizations have prompted a one-week extension order.
The U.S. Virgin Islands will take advantage of an extra $300 a week in supplemental unemployment benefits to help ease the financial strain brought on by the ongoing public health crisis, Gov. Albert Bryan Jr. said during a Monday news conference.
New confirmed COVID-19 infections subsided a little over the weekend in the U.S. Virgin Islands even as the virus killed the 15th resident. There were five new cases from Sunday to Monday, five from Saturday to Sunday and 11 from Friday to Saturday, according to the V.I. Department of Health's updates.
With one week of safe-at-home down, officials said Monday that the second week of Gov. Albert Bryan Jr.’s ongoing order is “pivotal” as the territory has not yet begun to experience “the decline in positivity rates we were hoping to achieve,” the governor said.
Starting at 6 a.m. Monday, the territory is reverting back to “Stay at Home” status in an effort to quash the continued spike in positive COVID-19 cases on St. Thomas, according to Gov. Albert Bryan Jr.
In a candid plea Monday, Health Department Medical Director Dr. Tai Hunte-Caesar said irresponsible behavior within the USVI community is causing the spread of COVID-19 to the elderly and other vulnerable populations and needs to stop.
Because it lacks a clearly defined eye, meteorologists have had a hard time tracking what is now being called Potential Cycle 9, but officials say it is expected to strengthen and will begin impacting the territory late afternoon Wednesday into Thursday.