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Jacksonville mayor talks about upcoming storm season, provides COVID-19 updates

He said that as of right now, hospital bed occupancy levels are stable and he's encouraging people to continue to practice social distancing.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — On Tuesday Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry was joined by leaders of the emergency management team to brief the public on the city’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and how it may impact preparations for hurricane season.

He started off by talking about some of the recent concerns he's been hearing regarding COVID-19 test results.

"I've heard concerns bout turnaround for test results ... 60% of those tested at city sponsored sites getting results in two days," he said.

He said that as of right now, hospital bed occupancy levels are stable and he's encouraging people to continue to practice social distancing so that they stay that way.

"We have to continue to work to drive those numbers down, we can't grow complacent," he said. "We have to continue to practice social distancing to slow and stop the spread."

He also spoke about the cancellation of the RNC in Jacksonville, saying that it was a difficult decision for President Trump to have to make and that he's grateful for the continued support and commitment to the people of Jacksonville.

"I know many businesses looking forward to the convention but cancelling was right thing to do," Curry said. After being asked by a reporter, he said at this time there are no plans for any sort of grant for businesses who may have been impacted by the cancellation. 

Curry also spoke about Hurricane Season and how COVID-19 it's impacting preparations being made by the city. 

"We're prepared, we have been through multiple storms and hurricanes together in the five years I've been in office, we practice for crisis management...," he explained. "While a pandemic is nothing we have seen in our lifetime we have navigated it and are navigating it."

Emergency Operations Director Woodard said that the city is prepared to open additional shelters to accommodate for social distancing and those that have tested positive for COVID-19.

He says that normall they have anywhere from eight to 12 shelters available during a storm, but they have 29 available should they need to use the, 

"If people come to shelter that are COVID positive we will have to isolate them," he explained . "We have a good plan and are working with hospitals and nursing homes."

On Monday, Curry spoke with First Coast News about the decision to call off the RNC amid COVID-19.

You can see that full interview right here.

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