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3/27/20 10 PM Entire Show

Video credit: WAAY ABC Huntsville, AL
Published on March 29, 2020 -
Coronavirus non-essential businesses closing, lots of new content
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3/27/20 10 PM Entire Show

Here's what's developed on the coronavirus outbreak since 6 p-m.

Nasa is taking extra precautions... the marshall space flight center is closing all facilities -- suspending all travel -- and making employees work from home.

And fort payne will be closing down all city parks, playgrounds and open spaces until april 17th or until the latest state health order is lifted.

Here's where the latest numbers stand tonight.

637 confirmed cases across the state.

121 of those come from north alabama.

There are also 4 deaths.

The mobile county health department confirmed a 4th coronavirus death this morning ... the state department of health has yet to confirm it.

Businesses deemed non- essential are also preparing to shutdown.

You're looking at the walmart on memorial parkway... it's seeing an influx of customers now that shoppers will have to get most of their goods from grocery stores.

Thanks for joining us.

I'm najahe sherman.

And i'm dan shaffer.

Tonight there's a lot of uncertainty in the small business community as governor kay ivey gives dozens of industries little more than a day before they have to start functioning without customers in their stores.

Hillary dunham, mint julep market i would rather know the ending and be able to plan for it than not know at all and have to juggle and come up with the answer.

Today's revised health order is designed to slow the spread of the coronavirus around the state... but it leaves a lot of uncertainty for many business owners and managers.

Waay 31's will robinson-smith spoke with businesses around huntsville about how they're taking the news -- and how they are preparing for the next three weeks.

Hillary dunham, mint julep market when you don't know what the next day brings, it really makes it difficult to plan.

Hillary dunham has done what she can to put a plan in place at mint julep market.

The store that specializes in gifts for events and special occasions started doing curbside pickups and more online orders about two weeks ago to keep her customers and staff safe from the coronavirus.

Hillary dunham, owner, mint julep market it's terrible because this is what you work for.

This is your job and this is your passion and this is what you really love to do.

And it just...it's a hard, it's a hard, hard thing.

Up the parkway, comic book and collectible shop "the deep" als made the decision to move to curbside pickup.

The store full of colorful crusaders and villains falls under the category of "book store" in the new state order.

Manager nathan huddleston says with so much rapid change over the last couple of weeks, it's been hard to know how to adjust.

Nathan huddleston, manager, the deep it's kind of confusion.

I mean, like, every day is something different that we have to adjust, modify and go from there.

But for businesses, like the barbershop "fade factory," there is no curbside option.

Barber marcus williams says he tried to save as much as he could over the past few weeks.

Marcus williams, barber, fade factory just having to think about the steps i'm going to have to take to prepare myself and make sure i'm taking care of my family.

He does take some comfort in knowing that with barbershops and hair stylists shut down right now, when this all blows over, there will be plenty of business.

Marcus williams, barber, fade factory there's going to be a boost in the economy and there's going to be a boost in barbershops.

So i'm just ready for everything to get back on track, man.

I'm ready for everything to get back to normal because like you said, this is not normal.

That was willrobinson- smith reporting.

For now, these business owners have to get used to a new normal -- at least for the next three weeks.

That's when all eyes will be on montgomery to see if this health order expands further.

Reporting live in huntsville, will robinson-smith, waay 31 news.

In today's news conference, governor kay ivey once again stressed there is no need for a statewide shelter in place order.

But she says cities do not need her permission to issue their own shelter in place.

Grove hill is not gadsden, and decatur is not dothan.

That's why i support our mayors across the state that feel that they need to take additional steps if the situation on the ground warrants it, but i have a responsibility to look statewide.

In this case, one size does not fit all.

Today, waay 31 asked the mayor of madison how he will determine a shelter in place order is necessary for the city.

Paul finley, mayor of madison "the answer to your question is when we need to.

When we need to continue to take the next step we will.

We continue to defer to adph, to our medical professionals each and everyday.

In this situation or goal is to take care of our citizens in all facets and all assets."

Right now, madison county has the 4th highest number of confirmed coronavirus cases.

As hundreds of north alabama businesses prepare to shut their doors tomorrow to follow governor kay ivey's order to help stop the spread of coronavirus, many shoppers already have started visiting stores that get to stay open.

All these businesses the governor has determined to be non-essential - like salons, bowling alleys and department stores - have to close their doors at 5 p.m.

Saturday.

Businesses not on the list - like grocery stores - get to stay open.

Waay31's steven dilsizian joins us live now after talking to people about the new restrictions.

Coronavirus restrictions already had some local businesses making the decision to close, but this latest order from the governor makes it mandatory for the next three weeks.

Stores exempt from the non- essential list already were seeing a lot of customers, and now they are bracing for even more.

Amina petty - works at walmart "they're going crazy and they're buying up everything, like 400, 500 dollars" the health order forces non- essential businesses to close because of the coronavirus.

Andrew chancellor works on the arsenal, but has the tools to work from home.

He's thinking of those who can't and so will be job-less because of this new order.

Take sot: andrew chancellor - lives in madison county "the first thing that i thought about was, how many people are going to be displaced from work, that's kind of the big thing right there" petty still expects more people to flood her store, but is confident in the future take sot: amina petty - works at walmart "i think it will get better... i think the most high has us" grocery stores are an essential business and are not closed.

You can find a list of all the businesses deemed to be non-essential and closed from 5 p.m.

Tomorrow to 5 p.m.

April 17th on our website, waay tv dot com live in hsv -- sd -- waay31 news.

New information... the city of huntsville says the coronavirus is actually speeding up some road projects!

Contractors are still out working on road projects like cecil ashburn.

The city told waay 31 in some cases like zierdt and martin road... workers are able to work beyond the time frame because there is less traffic.

The city says contractors are responsible for making sure their crews are being safe while working.

The alabama department of transportation says the timeline for their road projects are also unchanged.

Crews are still out working on the project.

That means you shouldn't expect a longer delay on the highway 231 construction in morgan county.

New details.

Students are staying home because school doors will be closed for the rest of the school year.

Waay 31's sophia borrelli spoke to one family in north alabama who is staying positive - by celebrating the big milestones in a child's life.

Shawna champion, connor's mom: "kindergarten and second grade is a pretty big deal and we are going to miss out on that."

Shawna champion and her family are doing what they can to keep to a normal routine while school is closed.

Connor champion, celebrated 8th birthday: "one thing that i miss about school is art."

While practicing social distancing - it's hard to plan things - especially when it comes to celebrating a birthday.

Shawna champion, connor's mom: "yeah he was a little bummed that we didn't get to go out or anything but you know we're better safe here."

Shawna says that's when she got the idea to take this picture and post it to social media - to show how connor celebrated his special day.

Shawna champion, connor's mom: "went and got him stuff to make a birthday cake here at home."

The champion family celebrated at home instead of their normal routine of heading out to a restaurant.

Connor champion, celebrated 8th birthday: "decorate my cake."

Connor champion, celebrated 8th birthday: "we sang happy birthday and took a picture."

A picture of a not so normal birthday - but a new normal for kids all across north alabama.

Shawna champion, connor's mom: "i knew that it would be a birthday he would never forget and most certainly i would never forget."

In grant - sophia borrelli waay 31 news.

Classes are expected to start online next month.

Parents in rural parts of north alabama are concerned about thier children doing school work online.

That's because they don't get good internet service.

Farmers tele-communication cooperative is making wi-fi hotspots available for free to anyone who needs it.

Still, some are worried about the quality of education children will get at home.

Tabitha marie/ parent "there's no structure, i don't think when it comes to learning at home versus learning in school."

To find the locations in jackson, dekalb and marshall counties with free wifi hotspots, go to our website at waay tv dot com.

A historic stimulus bill passed... how it affects you -- and when you might get your stimulus check in the mail.

And law enforcement making changes... what officers are doing to free up space in jails.

Your full forecast, coming up.

New details on the 4 coronavirus deaths reported in alabama.

The mobile county health department reported its first death this morning.

He was a 66 year old man with underlying conditions who recently traveled out of state.

At this time, the state health department still hasn't confirmed the death in mobile.

The 3 other deaths are in north alabama.

At this time, we don't know any information about the person who died in madison county.

The jackson county commision identified the county's death as a courthouse employee.

A man in lauderdale county also died from the coronavirus.

His family identified him as 78 year old albert johnson trousdale.

He died in huntsville hospital yesterday after testing positive for the virus on saturday!

He left behind his wife of 63 years and a loving family - who couldn't be with him when he passed.

His family described him as a kind person who was there when you really needed him.

At this time, the family does not know when they will lay him to rest.

New tonight... law enforcement offices can now issue a summons and complaint instead of arresting people for misdemeanor charges.

That's according to a new state proclamation.

The governor hopes it would help prevent coronavirus in jails.

Officers will need to be authorized to issue summons and complaints.

The county or municipality would then have to set a fee that would equal the bail and court fees a person would face if they were arrested.

There are exceptions to the summons and complaints.

They don't apply to any violent crimes - if the officer believes a person poses a risk to public safety - if the victim is a child - and if the crime would require restitution to the victim.

That same proclamation extended the licensure period for all emergency medical service workers.

The extension will last throughout the current state of emergency.

Without this extension, the paramedics and other medical service workers whose license expired would be required to stop working.

New at ten.... you can no longer rent out a bike to ride in downtown huntsville.

Pace bike share suspended all rentals as a precaution to the coronavirus.

At this time, they do not know when you'll be able to rent out a bike again.

Tonight -- people across america are patiently awaiting their stimulus checks in the mail or by direct deposit.

Today -- president trump signed the historic two trillion-dollar stimulus package.

The bill passed the house today and the senate earlier this week.

It pumps much-needed money into pockets of the american people and the u-s economy that are struggling because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The bill is the largest emergency aid package in u-s history.

Here is what this legislation means for you.

Single americans will recieve 12-hundred dollars.

Married couples will get 24-hundred.

Parents will get 500-dollars for each child younger than 17.

Those payments will start to phase out for individuals making more than 75- thousand dollars a year - and would not apply to those making more than 90- thousand dollars.

Those thresholds are doubled for married couples.

Treasury secretary steve mnuchin wants to get the checks out in three weeks.

If the irs has your direct deposit information - you'll get the money sooner than a mailed check.

When the government did this in 2001 - it took 6 weeks for the i-r-s to send out checks.

In 2008 - it took about 3 months after the bill was signed.

Boeing could be getting a staggering 17-billion dollars from the government!

The aerospace giant qualifies because it's a "businesses critical to maintaining national security."

Boeing called for 60 billion for u-s aerospace companies that make planes.

But -- the company's c-e-o said he doesn't want the government to own a stake in boeing in exchange for taxpayer funded stimulus money.

"no one has an interest in retaining government equity in their company.

We want to pay everything back.

Everybody does.

And to think that's not our motive is sort of silly... i don't have a need for an equity stake.

If they force it we'll just look at all the other options, and we've got plenty."

Boeing said it is suspending pay for its c-e-o and board chairman until further notice.

New at ten.

Lockheed martin is stepping up to help out during the coronavirus pandemic.

The company will donate their planes and vehicles to help deliver supplies across the country.

They are also donating their facilities for supply storage, distribution and testing.

Lockheed martin will also donate 10 million dollars to non-profit organizations involved in coronavirus relief and assistance.

Students in the tennessee valley got a surprise visit during their online class... which m-v-p logged on to boost the student's spirits.

New at ten.

A university of tennessee class got a surprise digital visit!

The professor was teaching his communication class online.

When he pointed out a mr. thompson logged on late.

Turns out it was none other than former super bowl champion and tennessee alumnus peyton manning!

"i just wanted to drop in and say hello to all the fellow communication students "i just encourage you to keep a positive attitude" manning also told students to use their extra time to help out somebody in need.

While the humans are away, the puppies will play!

Take a look at your screen!

These adorable puppies got to visit the georgia aquarium this week.

The aquarium is closed to people because of the coronavirus outbreak.

The atlanta humane society was able to capture these precious moments of the puppies running around and playing at the aquarium.

Coronavirus canceling spring sports... we talk with one local senior about their season that ended too soon.

High school sports are called off for the rest of the year, leaving seniors across the country with a season that ended to soon.

Sports director lynden blake spent the day in stevenson, finding out whats next for one north jackson senior.

Carter gass has made a lot of memories on this baseball field playing for north jackson.

"it was awesome beating scottsboro."

His favorite memory from his short senior season was his career night on the mound.

"umm, definitely striking out 16 in against north sand mountain in the county championship.

There ain't nothing like meeting my senior catcher in the middle after a good win, he's the first one a i saw with big smile on his face."

Coronavirus cut gass's season short.

No more celebrations after big wins, no more long bus rides with teammates gass calls family.

"you call it brothers, but we are more than that."

What he'll miss most, is the atmosphere at jr rorex park.

"if you aint been here at a game, you can't put nothing on it, it's real special here."

Gass made the most of the games he had, recording 49 strikeouts "on a day like today he's going to throw 85, 87, he's a really good player."

North jackson baseball coach cole porter says he's doing what he can to get gass to the next level.

"i've contacted, 10 or 15 different college coaches, letting them know this guy is still on the market, "he's going to be just fine, he can overcome any adversity, whatever needs to be done, i'm excited to see what he's going to do in the future."

If gass has learned anything from this pandemic, it's this.... "one day at a time, don't take anything for granted."

You would think gass would be bitter, but he's not.

He's just thankful for the times in a north jackson uniform.

"i grew up since i was little, just dreaming about playing on this field, dreaming about senior year, and it's all taken away, but you got to appreciate what i've been through, and what the whole team's been through, and we'll just keep pushing forward."

Lynden look live sigout on cam for 24/7 coverage you can count on for local news, breaking news and severe weather go to waaytv.com.

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