Current information about the Town of Acton's response to the COVID-19 situation
We hope you find this new format for COVID-19 updates useful. A new dashboard with daily data updates will be published in Acton's Covid-19 Information Center: http://www.actonma.gov/covid19
It has been reported to Acton Public Health that at this time there are 433 cumulative cases of COVID-19 in Acton with 63 individuals in isolation, 345 recovered and 25 fatalities (many of these at congregate care facilities). Above is a chart showing the cumulative number of cases in Acton in blue and the daily trend in current cases in red. The chart below shows the daily trend in current cases as red bars.
Use the following link to view the latest updates from the Board of Selectmen Chair.https://www.acton-ma.gov/DocumentCenter/View/6705/BoS-Updates12-14-20
Governor Baker Announces New Restrictions Statewide for Capacity, Mask Compliance and Distancing Due to Increased Cases, HospitalizationsToday, the Baker-Polito Administration announced that effective Sunday, December 13th, all communities in Massachusetts will return to Step 1 of Phase 3, of the Commonwealth’s reopening plan. This will reduce indoor capacities across a broad range of sectors of the economy and tighten several other workplace restrictions. The Administration announced the roll-back to respond to an increase in new COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations since the Thanksgiving holiday that is straining the health care system in Massachusetts.The return to Step 1 will also require the closure of certain businesses designated as Step 2 industries. These include indoor performance venues and certain high-contact indoor recreational businesses. In addition, capacity limits will be reduced to 40% statewide for most industries, and the limit on outdoor gatherings will be reduced statewide from 100 persons to 50 persons. Additional safety measures will be applied to restaurant dining as well.These new measures are designed to prevent infection and viral spread, especially in indoor settings. They will create stronger mask compliance, more social distancing, and limits to the time spent with people outside of your immediate household.The Administration also announced additional guidance for certain sectors including restaurants, office spaces and gyms, to address activities where mask wearing is not possible at all times.Phase III, Step I:Effective December 13, all communities will roll back to Phase 3, Step 1 of Massachusetts’ re-opening plan, including the following restrictions:
The Administration continues to encourage all employers to offer teleworking to their employees when possible.
According to the statewide public health data released from MassDPH on Dec. 1, the Town’s designation is still “yellow,” indicating a “medium risk” in the community.According to the state data, Acton's average daily incidence rate, which the state uses to calculate risk determinations, has risen to 19.9 per 100,000 residents.As cases continue to rise not just in our community, but throughout the entire state, it is vital that we all take the necessary precautions to prevent any further spread of COVID-19. This includes following CDC guidance regarding celebrating holidays this year. Thank you for your understanding and cooperation, working together toward a common goal is essential for stopping the spread of this disease in our town.Residents are urged to continue to practice social distancing, wear face coverings in public and limit their interactions with anyone who lives outside of their household.According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, traveling increases one’s potential to be exposed to COVID-19 and of potentially spreading it to others. Staying home and observing the holidays with those in your household or hosting a virtual celebration are the best ways to protect yourself and others from COVID-19.COVID-19 prevention tips from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health include:
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts provides comprehensive information about COVID-19 testing including an updated list of testing locations. More information is available at https://www.mass.gov/covid-19-testing. An interactive map showing testing locations is also available using the link on the left.
The Acton Town Services Hotline is available to connect residents with a live worker to receive information and answers to their questions about the latest government news, COVID-19, and Town services in general. Hotline workers also help answer questions related to the topics such as town meetings, financial relief programs for residents and business owners, and Town reopening plans. The Acton Town Services hotline number is 978-929-6600 and is open on Monday through Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Fridays from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
For the latest COVID information other updates from Acton Town Manager John Mangiaratti and guests tune into the Java with John program Fridays at 10am. View previous episodes using the link shown to the left. This program is produced by the Acton Council on Aging in collaboration with ActonTV. The weekly program is also broadcast live on local FM radio at Acton's station WAEM 94.9 FM.
Due to a recent rise in COVID-19 cases, Acton Memorial Library is temporarily suspending all in-person browsing appointments. The good news is we are able to add more on demand curbside hours this week and next week!Come to the library during curbside hours and call 978-929-6655, option 2. A library staff member will bring your holds outside.
For further updates on library hours and services, please go to our website at actonmemoriallibrary.org
The Acton Transfer Station will continue operating with the adjusted schedule for the initial reopening. The facility is currently open Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. The first hour (7-8 a.m.) is designated for Seniors (65+). The Transfer Station will also begin to accept payments (checks only) at the office for bulky items by early June. Staff are continuing to look at how to re-introduce some recycling streams such as polystyrene in later phases.The purchase of Transfer Station and Recycling Facility vehicle stickers are now available online.For more information on the Transfer Station and Recycling Center, please call 978-929-7742.
To read the updated restaurant protocols, click here.
The State of Massachusetts provides weekly metrics (https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-response-reporting#covid-19-weekly-public-health-report) and Acton’s numbers have been increasing over the last few weeks which is very concerning. The State identifies Cities and Towns as gray, green, yellow or red, with gray being the lowest and red being highest risk for COVID-19. Currently, Acton is green but approaching yellow and it is time that we all step back and do our part to keep our community low risk. I know it is tempting to get together with your friends and family but please remember to wear your face covering and understand that we recommend that you limit contact to people that you live with. As you know, social distancing is required of at least 6’and that includes family (unless they live with you, coworkers and friends). Just to reference that distance for you, it’s about the height of a door, the length of a mattress, two shopping carts or the width of a car.
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) states that wearing Face Coverings help stop the spread of COVID-19 to others. The CDC also suggests the following:
See diagrams taken from the CDC website below:
We are in this together - Please help us do your part in stopping the spread of COVID-19.
At its meeting on October 5th the Board of Selectmen voted unanimously to delay the 2021 Annual Town Meeting scheduled for Monday, April 5 to a date to be determined, but not later than June 30, 2021.
The Acton Boxborough United Way has announced further details on the COVID-19 Emergency funding now available for Acton and Boxborough residents. Frequently Asked Questions about the A-B United Way COVID-19 Emergency Grants for Residents. How to Donate to the COVID-19 Impact Fund from Acton-Boxborough United Way