April 16: 2 Kansas churches sue Gov. Kelly over religious gatherings

New York reports first coronavirus-related death in state
Posted at 5:33 AM, Apr 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-17 00:15:19-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The novel coronavirus, or COVID-19, continues to spread across the world, and in Missouri and Kansas.

41 Action News is keeping track of all closings and cancellations, as well as tracking where positive coronavirus cases are located.

We are also keeping track of which metro jurisdictions are under stay at home orders for the foreseeable future, only allowing for essential business and activities.

If you are a business finding unique ways to serve our community, check our KC Open for Business Facebook group to share your ideas.

Updates on the spread of the virus and how it is affecting the metro can be found below for April 16.

Today is One KC: A Digital Day of Giving. Local television and radio stations are partnering together to raise funds for the Kansas City Regional COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund. Please join us in supporting our city.

9:15 p.m. | Two churches and their pastors have sued Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly in federal court over her executive order, which limits religious gatherings.

9:02 p.m. | With Missouri's decision to waive requirements to make up now days, Lee's Summit R-7 schools announced May 22 will be the last day for virtual classes.

8:09 p.m. |University of Missouri Athletic Director Jim Sterk and five of the Tigers’ highest-paid coaches have agreed to voluntary pay cuts amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mizzou announced Thursday night that Sterk along with new football coach Eli Drinkwitz, men’s basketball coach Cuonzo Martin, women’s basketball coach Robin Pingeton, wrestling coach Brian Smith and baseball coach Steve Bieser will accept reduced salaries from May 1 to July 31 due to current economic challenges.

7:20 p.m. | Fourteen out of 369 people tested for COVID-19 during a random community sampling April 10 tested positive for the virus, a 3.8% rate. The Johnson County Department of Health and Environment conducted the tests, which will continue during the "the next several weeks."

6:15 p.m. | The Johnson County Board of Commissioners awarded a contract this week for up to $285,000 to purchase emergency personal protective equipment. Specifically, that will go toward 8,700 isolation gowns; 9,000 KN95 masks; 201,400 disposable medical masks; 3,072 face shields; and 441,000 gloves, according to a news release from the county. The supplies should be received around April 29.

6:05 p.m. | Johnson County officials say the first drive-thru testing clinic on April 10 resulted in 14 positive tests, or about 3.8% of the total number of processed tests. Everyone who tested positive was notified, and contact tracing has begun, according to the Johnson County Department of Health and Environment.

Testing in Johnson County will continue over the next several weeks, with an emphasis on essential workers and the general public, the health department said.

5:56 p.m. | Lee's Summit Mayor Bill Baird announced that an initial 30-day state of emergency, which was set to expire on Thursday, has been extended to May 15. Baird also issued a proclamation allowing certain businesses to engage in curbside alcohol sales.

5:05 p.m. | Riverbend Post Acute Rehabilitation in Kansas City, Kansas, says four more people have died from COVID-19 in the last day. The death toll now stands at 19. In all, 92 residents and 24 staff have tested positive, and 10 residents have been hospitalized.

In a letter on Thursday, Dr. Allen Greiner, chief medical officer of the Unified Government Public Health Department, said the highest risk remains for those who have spent time inside the facility or who have been in close contact with staff or residents who have been infected. Those who live in the area should not be at a higher risk than those elsewhere in Wyandotte County, Greiner said.

4:55 p.m. | On an 11-2 vote, the Kansas City, Missouri, City Council approved a resolution to close some streets to block traffic and open them for pedestrians and bicyclists to help maintain social distancing.

4:34 p.m. | Essential workers can be tested for COVID-19 on Friday through an invitation-only program sponsored by the Johnson County Department of Health and Environment.

First responders without symptoms, hospice workers and in-home care providers, including those who provide child care or work with people with disabilities, who have been invited can get tested from noon to 3 p.m. on Friday at Shawnee Mission Northwest High School, 12701 W. 67th St.

The event is not open to the general public.

3:38 p.m. | Jackson County Executive Frank White Jr. announced Thursday that the county's stay-at-home order will be extended through May 15 after consulting with county health officials. The order had been set to expire April 24.

3:29 p.m. | Need something to do during your COVID-19 quarantine? Check out the Kansas state treasurer's unclaimed property website or the Missouri state treasurer's unclaimed property website and see if you have money owed to you that you didn't even know about.

3:21 p.m. | In response to Kansas City, Missouri, extending its stay-at-home order until May 15, North Kansas City Mayor Don Stielow also has extended his city's stay-at-home order until 11:59 p.m. on Friday, May 15.

3:02 p.m. | Missouri Gov. Mike Parson has extended the statewide stay-at-home order through May 3, which aligns with Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly's announcement on Wednesday.

2:53 p.m. | Metropolitan Community College will host a free virtual concert for students featuring Grammy Award winner Rudy Currence at noon on April 22.

2:35 p.m. | On Thursday afternoon, new data shows Missouri has more than 5,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19. Both the state of Kansas and Kansas City, Missouri, have topped 1,600 cases, and Missouri and Kansas now have more than 250 combined deaths, including 85 deaths in the seven-county metro. Nationally, the U.S. has topped 30,000 deaths since Wednesday afternoon.

2:20 p.m. | The Washburn Student Government Association has donated $30,000 to Ichabods Moving Forward, a student emergency fund at the Topeka university, and $5,000 to the Student Victim Assistance Fund. Students enrolled in at least six hours of classes can apply for help from the fund.

2:05 p.m. | The Heart of America Shakespeare Festival will postpone the summer production of "The Tempest," originally scheduled for June 16 through July 5 in Southmoreland Park, until the summer of 2021.

2 p.m. | Kansas officials say in an effort to reduce stress on an overloaded system, residents should now apply for unemployment benefits on certain days of the week based on their last names. If your last name begins with A through M, you should file claims on Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. If you last name begins with N through Z, file on Mondays, Wednesdays or Fridays.

1:50 p.m. | The Johnson County Board of Commissioners discussed Gov. Laura Kelly's decision to extend the statewide stay-at-home order at its meeting Thursday, but did not take any action to extend the local order beyond that date.

12:30 p.m. | Dr. Rex Archer, director of the Kansas City, Missouri, Health Department, says that even if people follow stay-at-home orders and social distancing guidelines, more periods of closure may be needed over the next two years. He spoke with Mayor Quinton Lucas at a news conference to explain the reasoning behind the mayor's decision to extend the stay-at-home order to May 15.

Noon | The U.S. Small Business Administration says it is unable to accept new applications for the Paycheck Protection Program based on available appropriations funding. According to an NBC News report, the relief fund hit its $350 billion limit Thursday and is no longer accepting any more lenders or applications.

Separately, the Save Small Business Fund, an initiative of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, says it is taking applications to help small businesses struggling amid the pandemic. To qualify, small businesses must employ between three and 20 people; be located in an economically vulnerable community; and have been harmed financially by the  COVID-19 pandemic. To apply for the funding, click here.

11:30 a.m. | The Kansas City Marriott Downtown has closed, according to signs posted at the hotel. Anyone with questions about a reservation should contact 816-421-6800.

10:50 a.m. | Independence Mayor Eileen Weir has joined Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas in extending her city's stay-at-home order until May 15. All city buildings will remain closed until then.

“The data we consistently rely upon throughout the pandemic shows the peak for COVID-19 cases in Missouri is not expected until late April but that date shifts almost daily," Weir said in a news release. "Please continue to follow the stay-at-home order, practice social distancing, wear a cloth mask when out in public, sanitize commonly touched surfaces and regularly wash your hands for 20 seconds.”

Jackson County Executive Frank White Jr. says he plans to make an announcement on an extension to the countywide stay-at-home order later Thursday.

10:45 a.m. | Johnson County, Kansas, officials report three additional COVID-19 deaths in the last 24 hours, bringing the death toll there to 22. The county has 343 confirmed cases of the virus and 23 probable cases.

10:40 a.m. | The National World War I Museum and Memorial will remain closed until further notice following Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas' decision to extend the local stay-at-home order to May 15. The museum has free digital content available online.

10:35 a.m. | Kansas City, Kansas, Mayor David Alvey says he applauds Gov. Laura Kelly's decision to extend the statewide stay-at-home order until May 3, which supersedes the current local order set to expire April 24. During the extension, Wyandotte County will take into consideration the recommendation of health officials to extend the local order until May 15.

“We applaud Governor Kelly’s extension of the statewide Stay at Home Order until May 3rd. We will continue to look at the data and take careful, measured steps to protect public health and our community,” Alvey said in a news release.

10:25 a.m. | Overland Park Mayor Carl Gerlach issued a challenge to other metro mayors to participate in One KC: A Digital Day of Giving. All donations to the initiative, which is sponsored by local media outlets, stay local and support those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

10:20 a.m. | Douglas County, Kansas, law enforcement agencies say they are ready to enforce Gov. Laura Kelly's stay-at-home order, which she extended to May 3. The violation of an executive order is a Class A misdemeanor and could result in a fine of up to $2,500 and one year in jail.

10 a.m. | Just starting your day? We’ve got you covered with a quick look at what you need to know.

Get Caught up: April 16

9:30 a.m. | Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly has moved her daily COVID-19 briefing to 1 p.m. on Thursday. 41 Action News will broadcast the briefing on-air and online.

8:44 a.m. | The PGA announced it is further delaying the opening of the season to June 8.

8:40 a.m. | Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley has been tapped to serve on a committee that will oversee the reopening of the U.S. economy.

8:30 a.m. | University of Kansas Health Systems officials gave their daily update on COVID-19 operations.

7:35 a.m. | In the last four weeks, 21 million people have filed for unemployment in the United States.

7 a.m. | What do medical professionals think about the May 15 stay-at-home extension? Is it the right date? Dr. Dana Hawkinson with the University of Kansas Health System weighed in live on 41 Action News Today.

Answering coronavirus questions

6:45 a.m. | Kansas City, Missouri, Mayor Quinton Lucas joined 41 Action News live to discuss the stay-at-home order extension and answer some of our questions.

KCMO stay-at-home order extended to May 15

5:30 a.m. | KyMel, Inc. has canceled its summer camps for families dealing with cancer. It affects Camp Hope, which serves children with cancer, and Camp SIBsational, which serves siblings of children with cancer. A virtual option will be offered in their place.

5:15 a.m. | Smithfield Foods announced it is closing its plant in Martin City, Missouri. The move affects around 200 employees at the location.

5 a.m. | Kansas City, Missouri, Mayor Quinton Lucas extended the city's stay-at-home order through May 15 to prevent the spread of COVID-19. There is a press conference scheduled for noon Thursday to discuss details.

Previous coverage:
COVID-19 Video Update
Tuesday, March 17
Wednesday, March 18
Thursday, March 19
Friday, March 20
Saturday, March 21
Sunday, March 22
Monday, March 23
Tuesday, March 24
Wednesday, March 25
Thursday, March 26
Friday, March 27
Saturday, March 28
Monday, March 30
Monday, March 30
Tuesday, March 31
Wednesday, April 1
Thursday, April 2
Friday, April 3
Friday, April 3
Saturday, April 4
Monday, April 6
Monday, April 6
Tuesday, April 7
Wednesday, April 8
Thursday, April 9
Friday, April 10
Saturday, April 11
Sunday, April 12
Monday, April 13
Tuesday, April 14
Wednesday, April 15

Johnson County, KS
COVID-19 Video Update