AP PA Headlines: Pittsburgh bars, restaurants closed for a week

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — The rising number of COVID-19 infections in the Pittsburgh area is helping drive Pennsylvania’s number of confirmed new cases to 667. The state Health Department said Friday the Pennsylvania death toll from the coronavirus pandemic rose by 34 to more than 6,700 so far. The number of cases in Allegheny County, which encompasses Pittsburgh, rose by 166.


That increase prompted the county to close bars and restaurants for a week. Meanwhile, Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration is recommending that people stay at home for 14 days if they are returning from Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas or Utah.


HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Gov. Tom Wolf’s more expansive mask order issued this week as the coronavirus shows new signs of life in Pennsylvania is being met with hostility from Republicans. They are objecting to the Democrat’s use of power, to wearing a mask itself and to what they call confusion it’s causing. It is one of many partisan fights over the coronavirus.


This is happening in a premier presidential battleground state where Democrats blame President Donald Trump for the virus’ devastation and Republicans blame Wolf. Pennsylvania’s state House Republican leaders called Wolf’s expanded mask order “another unenforceable, unilateral mask order.” Five House Republicans are questioning the science behind using a mask to contain the virus.


HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Gov. Tom Wolf is taking a step to relax requirements for professional licenses. He signed legislation Wednesday that prevents the state from denying a professional license to someone simply because they have a felony on their record. Under the bill, a board or commission can only reject an applicant for a criminal history that is directly related to the occupation for which they are seeking a license.


Even so, boards and commissions cannot consider juvenile or expunged convictions, and they must consider the applicant’s personal rehabilitation, training and references, among other things. One million people need an occupational license from a board or commission to do their job, according to Wolf’s administration.

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