On Monday, March 30, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear issued an order limiting out-of-state travel for Kentuckians to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
“Right now we have more cases in other states,” Beshear said in a release. “What it means is your likelihood of getting infected and potentially bringing back the coronavirus may be greater in other states than ours. You need to be home anyways.”
As of 5 p.m. March 30, there were 480 cases of COVID-19 in Kentucky and 11 deaths. Two new cases are linked to a Campbell County nursing home, where one resident and one staff member are being treated. Beshear said he would be lighting the Governor's Mansion and Capitol dome green to honor those we have and encouraged Kentuckians to do the same at home.
While the order limits out-of-state travel, it does make exceptions for:
- To obtain groceries
- To care for loved ones
- To get health care
- And when required by court order
But when you return to Kentucky from another state, you are required to self-quarantine for 14 days.
On March 28, the governor asked Kentuckians to avoid all "unnecessary travel to Tennessee" and to not "travel across the southern state-line to partake in activities that have been limited, or were limited earlier in Kentucky."
According to the Tennessee Department of Health, the state has more than 1,800 confirmed cases of COVID-19, whereas Kentucky has 480. Beshear's office says Tennessee did not "as quickly adopt some of the more stringent measures Kentucky has enacted."
Beshear has also enacted at 10-step plan to help fight the coronavirus in Kentucky. "Stay Healthy at Home" is the first tenant of that plan. The governor says the other steps include "sanitation and social distancing as well as information for those seeking help with unemployment, mental health issues and health care benefits."
“We’re trying to make sure we’re putting all of those steps that people need to take into one place,” Beshear said in a release.
In terms of assistance with unemployment, Beshear says federal help from the coronavirus CARES Act will help Kentucky workers. “I signed an agreement with the Department of Labor that provides for us to raise the maximum weekly benefit by $600, increase benefits weeks by 13 additional weeks, fund unemployment insurance for individuals not typically eligible and finally allows states to expand workshare programs,” he said.
The governor has also established a crowdsourced Team Kentucky Fund to offer financial assistance to those who have had their employment impacted by COVID-19. Donations to the fund are tax-deductible. According to the donation link, "The Commonwealth of Kentucky’s Public Protection Cabinet oversees the Team Kentucky Fund" and its distribution.