FRANKFORT, Ky. (Feb. 16, 2021) – On Tuesday, Gov. Andy Beshear updated Kentuckians on the winter storm that has impacted communities across the commonwealth, as well as the state’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout.
“The federal government is once again increasing our vaccine supply. The Biden administration announced today they will send 13.5 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine to states per week, up from 11 million last week,” said Gov. Beshear. “The administration will also double the number of doses sent directly to retail pharmacies. Next week, Kentucky is expected to receive 87,860 vaccine doses.”
The Governor and other state officials also updated Kentuckians on the commonwealth’s winter storm recovery.
The Kentucky Emergency Operations Center remains at Level 3 operations status. The Kentucky National Guard is assisting emergency efforts by providing debris removal teams to help the Kentucky Division of Forestry clear trees, supporting local officials with transport of citizens to warming centers and shelters and providing crews to transport medical staff.
“Kentuckians are doing what we do best – taking care of each other. Under the continuing state of emergency, we have leveraged assistance from our state agencies in providing response and recovery assets and equipment to assist our many East and Southeastern counties heavily impacted by the recent power outage,” said Kentucky Division of Emergency Management Director Michael Dossett. “At the height of the outage, 154,400 homes were without power. Restoration efforts will be ongoing into the coming week.”
Director Dossett told Kentuckians to be aware that outage numbers rise and fall based on the deactivation of large circuits to repair smaller areas in the outage.
Thirty-two counties and 22 cities in the state have declared states of emergency. Eleven warming centers are open in the commonwealth, with another 18 on standby. Five shelters are open with one on standby.
Director Dossett said a third winter storm in eight days is expected Wednesday evening to Friday morning. Single-digit temperatures are expected. Snow, sleet, freezing rain and cold rain will all be possible across the region.
Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) Secretary Jim Gray updated Kentuckians on current driving conditions after another winter storm impacted the commonwealth Monday and overnight.
“Hazardous driving conditions are the rule, not the exception. Interstate Highway 65 has been a significant trouble spot today,” said Secretary Gray. “We again ask the public to help protect themselves and our workers by staying off roads if possible. We all need to do our part, and we’ll get through this together.”
The KYTC Division of Equipment and Division of Incident Management are working to truck motor fuel into eastern counties. Salt supply, statewide, is adequate. Secretary Gray said clearing downed trees has been another major task today, especially in Eastern Kentucky.
As of 4 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 16, Gov. Beshear reported the following COVID-19 numbers:
New cases today: 1,255
New deaths today: 27
Positivity rate: 6.58%
Total deaths: 4,318
Currently hospitalized: 935
Currently in ICU: 272
Currently on ventilator: 133
Top counties with the most positive cases today are: Jefferson, Fayette, Kenton, Boone and Hardin. Each county reported at least 50 new cases.
To see a list of those reported lost to the virus today, click here.
The Governor said Kroger regional vaccination sites – at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Greenwood Mall in Bowling Green and the Northern Kentucky Convention Center in Covington would be open Thursday. The Kroger Franklin County regional vaccination site will be open tomorrow, Wednesday, Feb. 17.
$264 Million Healthy at Home Eviction Relief Fund Update
On Monday, in partnership with the Kentucky Housing Corporation, Gov. Beshear opened the Healthy at Home Eviction Relief Fund with an additional $264 million to keep Kentuckians safe and housed throughout the pandemic.
Tenants who qualify can apply here for rent and utility assistance to cover their past-due and future bills. If approved, lump sum, direct payments will be made to landlords and utility providers. To learn more about this state program and parallel programs for Jefferson and Fayette counties, see the full release.
As of today, more than 6,400 people have created an account, more than 5,200 have started the application process and 1,780 tenants and more than 900 landlords completed their applications. The total amount requested for rental assistance is more than $3.2 million. The total amount requested for utility assistance is $1.2 million.
To view the full daily report, incidence rate map, information on testing locations, vaccines, contact tracing, school reports and guidance, guidance for health care providers and the White House Coronavirus Task Force reports for Kentucky and more, visit kycovid19.ky.gov.