UPDATE: Washington Pauses County Progressions To Phase Four

Jun 26, 2020

Sixteen Washington counties are in phase three of the state's reopening plan.
Credit State of Washington

UPDATE: Saturday 2:15 pm:

Washington Governor Jay Inslee says, due to the spread of Covid-19 in some parts of the state, he has ordered a pause in the process of moving counties in phase three of the coronavirus progression to phase four.

Eight rural counties are eligible to move to phase four, but Inslee says, due to the ability of people to move from county to county, that this is not a good time to allow counties to remove all Covid-related restrictions.

"Phase 4 would mean a return to normal activity and we can’t do that now due to the continued rise in cases across the state," Inslee said. "We all want to get back to doing all the things we love in Washington during the summer, and fully open our economy, but we aren’t there yet. This is an evolving situation and we will continue to make decisions based on the data."

“We have concerns, in general, given this increase in activity across the state of Washington, and we have to be aware of that on a statewide basis because people travel back and forth across county lines," Inslee said.

And they’re capable of taking the virus with them.

Inslee says the state doesn’t have a timetable yet for developing guidelines for counties that are ready to advance.

Garfield County remains the only one without a confirmed case yet. Ferry County has had one case, Lincoln two and Pend Oreille County three. Stevens County, which is a few days behind its neighbors, has had 16 confirmed cases, including four hospitalizations and one death.