Lackawanna County remains red

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SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — More counties in our region are shifting phases Friday.

Most still in the red phase are moving into the yellow. And some counties in the yellow phase will move into the green. Which leaves Lackawanna County the only county in our region to remain red.

Lackawanna County has been in limbo waiting to be moved to the yellow phase. Per the governor last week, that could come in the next week. Lackawanna County residents, business owners and county leaders are anxiously awaiting June 5th.

“Hopefully we will get to green real soon. That’s our hope. That’s our plan and we’re working on it. We’re working on it everyday,” Lackawanna County Commissioner Jerry Notarianni said.

The green phase will have to wait for Lackawanna County. For the past few weeks, commissioners have been working with Senator John Blake, trying to convince Harrisburg the county is ready to re-open in the yellow phase. Last week, Governor Wolf announced all counties that remain in the red phase are expected to move to yellow next Friday, which is Lackawanna, and nine others in the Philadelphia area.

“It’s been a long time coming. I wish it was a little quicker than this. Our businesses are devastated right now, the ones that closed so we need to keep moving,” County Commissioner Chris Chermak said.

The county will re-open just one week after Luzerne County. If you look at the number of positive cases and deaths, Lackawanna County has 24 deaths more than Luzerne at 163, while Lackawanna has less positive cases.

Across the state, most positive cases and deaths are from long-term living facilities. Allied Services Skilled Nursing and Mountain View Care Center among the highest in Lackawanna County. Commissioners plan to help its residents and business owners as the county starts to re-open June 5th.

“If they need guidance from the county, we’re going to be there to try to assist any way they can,” Chermak said.

“You want everybody to be safe and secure and confident, but yeah, we would like to get it going in the right way,” Notarianni said.

County commissioners told Eyewitness News Thursday that they plan to open the Lackawanna County Government Center starting Monday, June 8th. They have been working to implement safety guidelines for those who enter the building.

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