Franklin County goes green next Friday, Gov. Tom Wolf announced today.
Meanwhile, the state legislature is waiting on a court decision its latest effort to end the governor’s emergency declaration that brought local commerce to almost a standstill while dealing with the Coronavirus pandemic.
Both the Pennsylvania Senate and House passed a resolution (HR836) this week ending the emergency. Wolf has refused to acknowledge it and controversy remains over constitutional issues with the move. Both sides say they will seek court clarification.
Wolf credits his lockdown of the state with its business closures and stay-at-home orders with “flattening the curve” of COVID-19 cases. He claims it has saved lives.
“As counties reopen, Pennsylvania continues to see a steady decline in cases,” he said.
He calls it “a positive indicator” that his phased, measured reopening plan is working to balance public health with economic recovery.
“In Pennsylvania, not only did we flatten the curve, but we are continuing to keep case counts down even as we open our commonwealth,” he said. “We will continue to take a measured, phased approach to reopening that relies on science and health experts.”
He doesn’t mention the legislative resolution to end the emergency in today’s news release.
Franklin County cases
Franklin County has seen has seen 837 COVID-19 cases since early March, according to the Department of Health. DOH lists 810 of those as confirmed.
It also lists 42 deaths for Franklin County, many more than Coroner Jeff Conner’s most recent count, and more than WellSpan Health’s count, which includes out-of-county residents.
Conn reported 42 deaths earlier this week, of which only 34 were Franklin County residents. Seven were Cumberland County residents and one lived in Maryland.
Of the county’s 34 deaths, 26 were nursing home residents.
About 11% of the 4,901 COVID-19 tests WellSpan has done in Franklin County turned out positive. That’s 537 positives as of today (Friday). WellSpan also reports 36 COVID-19 deaths at Chambersburg Hospital, but those numbers include out-of-county residents.
DOH is supposed to be counting deaths according to place of residence, not the place where they died.