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As a new strain of coronavirus (COVID-19) swept through the world in 2020, preparedness plans, masking policies and more public policy changed just as quickly. WVXU has covered the pandemic's impact on the Tri-State from the very beginning, when on March 3, 2020, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine barred spectators from attending the Arnold Sports Festival in Columbus over concerns about the virus, even though Ohio had yet to confirm a single case of COVID-19.

Beshear Orders Bars, Restaurants Closed Inside, School Remote Statewide

Stephanie Wolf

Restaurants and bars in Kentucky will be closed to indoor dining starting Friday until December 13 due to the uncontrolled spread of the coronavirus.

Gov. Andy Beshear announced the new restrictions during his daily briefing Wednesday. Indoor venues, event spaces and theaters can have no more than 25 people per room, and Beshear also limited gatherings to just your own household and one other, for a maximum of eight people.

The state is also launching a $40 million fund to help restaurants and bars, which will be eligible for up to $10,000 each.

He also ordered that all public and private schools move to remote learning on Monday.

Beshear announced 2,753 new cases of coronavirus in Kentucky. All of the five highest days have come in the last week. He said he knows the decision to enact these restrictions will be unpopular but he said it's necessary.

"This is the most difficult battle we're ever going to fight," he said.

These are the most stringent restrictions Beshear has announced since March, when the first coronavirus cases were confirmed in the commonwealth. Last week, the state Supreme Court upheld his right to issue the executive orders during a public health crisis.

This article first appeared on WFPL. For more like this, visit wfpl.org now