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Mayor Cranley declares state of emergency in Cincinnati to protect against spread of COVID-19

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Posted at 1:55 PM, Mar 11, 2020

CINCINNATI — Mayor John Cranley said he declared a state of emergency in Cincinnati Wednesday so city officials could take appropriate action to protect against the spread of COVID-19.

There are currently no cases of COVID-19 in the Tri-State region. At the time this article was published, there were four cases in Ohio, eight cases in Kentucky and 10 cases in Indiana.

The state of emergency went into effect at 3 p.m. on Wednesday.

"Information received by the City Administration has established that the number of positive cases of COVID-19 may be significantly underreported due to the lack of adequate medical testing materials made available by the federal government, adding to the scope of the potential public health threat and potential need or rapid action," Cranley said.

Cranley also deferred to Gov. Mike DeWine, saying he recommended organizers cancel large gatherings and events throughout Greater Cincinnati. Cranley said he would be following DeWine's lead, but does not plan to cancel anything yet.

Cranley said he would work with City Council, City Manager Patrick Duhaney, the city administration and the City of Cincinnati Board of Health to streamline communication within city government and to disseminate information to the public.

Duhaney will serve as the city's chief administrative and chief executive officer to make sure city operations “can proceed efficiently and with minimal disruption” while also ensuring appropriate actions are being carried out to minimize public health risks, Cranley said.

A mayor of Cincinnati hasn't declared a state of emergency since 2008, when Mayor Mark Mallory declared one following devastating wind storms from Hurricane Ike.