Newark City Council restricts gatherings, eases parking
Following the recommendations from Governor John Carney and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Newark City Council approved an emergency ordinance aimed at reducing the spread of COVID-19.
The ordinance will be automatically sunset in 60 days unless extended by Council through normal ordinance procedure. The terms of the ordinance are:
- All public and private social gatherings shall not exceed 10 attendees.
- Law enforcement may order the dispersal of gatherings exceeding the maximum number of attendees.
- All bars, restaurants and taverns within City of Newark limits shall only provide take-out, drive through and delivery.
The City will also offer free parking in all municipal lots, and metered spaces on Main Street will be free, but with a 15-minute time limit to be used to quickly pick up items and meals from local retailers and restaurants. The 15-minute time limit will be enforced by the City to ensure parking availability.
Keeping Delaware Veterans Safe
US Senator Tom Carper said he was briefed by Veteran’s Affairs officials on the efforts of the Wilmington VA to care for veteran service members during the pandemic. Carper says the VA is “taking smart steps to reduce risks and increase safety.”
“But it takes an all-hands-on-deck effort to ensure health and safety, including at the individual level. While my colleagues and I work in Congress to make sure the VA and our other community hospitals and health care facilities have the resources they need to combat this pandemic, I encourage veterans and their families to familiarize themselves with and follow the VA’s protocols before visiting a facility. If you know a veteran who receives care at the Wilmington VAMC or at the Dover and Georgetown Community Based Outpatient Clinics, please share this information with them so that we can all help keep each other safe.”
Carper asks that Veterans follow these instructions from the VA:
VA asks that any veteran with symptoms such as fever, cough or shortness of breath should immediately contact their local VA facility. VA urges Veterans to call before visiting – you can find contact information for your closest VA facility. In Delaware, the VA has facilities in Wilmington, Dover and Georgetown.
DART to Operate a Reduced Service
Due to the presence of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Delaware, business closures, reductions in staffing and lower ridership levels, effective Wednesday, March 18, DART public transit services will operate on the following reduced service schedule until further notice. On weekdays, regular fixed route services will operate on a Saturday service schedule statewide, with additional service on Routes 15, 18, 43 and 301. DART’s regularly scheduled weekend service will operate normal service levels. For specifics, please visit www.DartFirstState.com.
In addition, Customer Service call center hours will be reduced to Monday through Friday, 8 AM to 5 PM. Riders can view real-time bus information by downloading the DART Transit app. All DART ticket stores will be closed until further notice starting on Wednesday, which includes the stores at 718 N. Market St., Amtrak Station, at DART Administration Buildings in Dover and Wilmington, and at the Lewes Transit Center. DART fares and passes can be purchased through DART Pass mobile payment app, online, or by paying cash on the buses. A list of other sales locations is available at Ticket Outlets.
Statewide Paratransit services will continue to operate normal hours, as will the Reservations call center.
To support Delaware Public Schools, DART is offering students free bus rides on regularly scheduled bus routes to access school meal programs weekdays from 10 AM to 2 PM until schools are back in session.
Delaware Transit Corporation (DTC) has implemented several additional measures to clean vehicles and facilities used by the public to help limit the spread of the illness.
For customers who ride our public transit service, all DART buses have and continue to be thoroughly disinfected.
DNREC Parks Stay Open
The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control continues to focus on taking a proactive and preventative approach to keep communities and employees safe in the midst of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, while maintaining operations and services as best as possible.
To encourage Delawareans to be active outdoors and to provide space for activity during the coronavirus period, no fees will be charged or passes required for entrance to Delaware State Parks and state wildlife areas, effective immediately until April 30.
- State parks and wildlife areas are open, and no entrance fees will be charged from now until April 30. All state park campsite, cabins, bathhouses, cottages continue to be open at this time. Buildings such as park and wildlife area offices and nature centers will close after the end of the day Tuesday, and programs and tours are canceled. Anyone visiting a park or wildlife area is encouraged to engage in responsible social distancing practices, avoiding groupings of people. People can find parks and wildlife areas listed online.
- As of Wednesday morning, sales of fishing licenses, hunting licenses, conservation passes for vehicle access to wildlife areas and boat registrations will occur online only or at any third-party vendors that remain open, instead of in person at DNREC’s Dover office. Annual park passes good for the entire season and surf fishing tags should also be purchased online only or at any third-party agents instead of at park offices or in the Dover office; purchased park passes will be mailed before April 30. The Department has provided convenient links to these resources on its homepage, available at delaware.gov.
- Commercial fishing license sales will continue at the Department’s main office in Dover by appointment only. Call 302-739-9916 to make an appointment.
- Applications and information provided for well, septic, air, water and other permits are being accepted by email, mail and phone, reducing direct interchange of documents.
- Hearings for permits, regulations and appeals are being moved to phone or video for public access. Details on how to access any hearings will be posted with the official hearing notices.
The Department remains open. Many office-based employees are working from home and remote locations or relocating within offices to create distance among individuals. Adjustments are being made to procedures for many parks, wildlife and field personnel to reduce interactions among employees and with the public.