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St. Louis County Executive says reopening timeline coming soon, announces small business relief program

Page reiterated how different the county is when it comes to the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases when compared to the rest of the state

ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. — St. Louis County Executive Sam Page reiterated that the county is not ready to ease restrictions when it comes to the stay-at-home order. 

However, Page said he believes the county will have a timeline next week for when it can begin to reopen. 

"I think we'll put a timeline on it next week for sure," he said. "Mid-May has always been our target to reevaluate where we are.”

St. Louis County remains under a stay-at-home order until further notice.

Page has said the county differs from the rest of the state when it comes to the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases.

“We still have a lot of people that are very sick in our hospitals,” Page said.

Page said 40% of the confirmed cases in the state are in the county. He also said Missouri Gov. Mike Parson recognizes that the St. Louis area is different when it comes to the COVID-19 response due to having so many of the confirmed cases.

Page also introduced a relief program on Friday to help small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The small business relief program is made possible from the federal CARES Act. The county received nearly $174 million from the federal grant.

“This has kept a tight grip on our economy,” Page said.

The small business relief program will be for businesses that have been most impacted by stay-at-home orders. The grant can be used for reopening costs, any utilities and costs associated with social distancing changes.

The grant will provide each eligible business up to $15,000.

“Our goal is to focus on the businesses that have the most financial need in our community,” Page said. "These grants will be awarded based on the recommendation of the council member from each district, but also recommendations of mayors, if appropriate, in any municipality that represents a business who has applied for one of these grants."

All applications for the program are public information and will be on the transparency portal on stlcorona.com, Page said.

Click here for the application and more

"We will not solve all of their problems, but we believe this will help some," Page said. 

As of May 1, there are 3,253 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the county, 117 of those cases were reported in the last 24 hours. More than 1,000 people have been released from isolation and 165 people have died due to complications from the virus.

Page has been holding briefings on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 8:30 a.m. as the pandemic continues.

5 On Your Side will livestream the briefings on the 5 On Your Side app and KSDK.com. 

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