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Rockford to enforce strict rules on indoor dining

‘A virtual Thanksgiving sure as heck beats a Christmas in the ICU,’ McNamara said.
Published: Nov. 19, 2020 at 3:54 PM CST
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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - City of Rockford and Winnebago County officials provided an update on the COVID-19 pandemic in the region.

Mayor of Rockford Tom McNamara started with potential relief for small businesses. He talked about a $900,000 grant program that will aid restaurants and bars locally.

“We know that these dollars are simply not enough but we will continue to advocate for our local businesses at the state and federal levels,” McNamara said.

McNamara pleaded with the community to work together to slow the spread of COVID-19 in the region. He said the city of Rockford code enforcers will start to enforce strict rules when it comes to indoor dining in Rockford.

The mayor asked the community to hold off on big Thanksgiving celebrations.

“A virtual Thanksgiving sure as heck beats a Christmas in the ICU,” McNamara said.

The county added 234 new cases of COVID-19, for a total of 15,719 since the pandemic began. Seven new deaths were added, for a total of 192 in Winnebago County. The test positivity percentage over the last seven days in 18.9 percent in the county, 19.5 percent for Region 1.

There is a 97.0 percent recovery rate.

Dr. Sandra Martell of the Winnebago County Health Department spoke to the community directly. She started by providing an update on hospitals in the region.

“The system has surged to create additional capacity for COVID-19 and non COVID-19 individuals,” Martell said. “Our one system is caring for the most critically ill in the community.”

Dr. Martell reported the first outbreak in a school. She said Spring Creek Elementary School has multiple positive cases.

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