We are fortunate that Madison continues to experience low COVID-19 infection levels in our community; we have identified only 1 new COVID-19 case over this past week, leading to a total of 5 active cases. Despite maintaining low infection levels, we must remember that we are still at risk. Please continue to follow the state guidelines on social gatherings, social distancing and mask wearing, both indoors and outside, as well as continue to practice frequent hand washing.
Yesterday, Governor Lamont announced he is extending Connecticut’s state of civil preparedness and public health emergency in response to the COVID-19 pandemic until February 9, 2021. Originally declared in March and scheduled to expire on September 9th, the Governor said that the states of emergency must remain in place in order for the state to effectively respond to the unprecedented and ongoing global pandemic. This means that the almost 70 Executive Orders issued by the Governor will remain in place until February 9, 2021 unless rescinded earlier. Please visit the State of Connecticut website for more details on the Executive Order. The Board of Selectmen will be discussing the extension of the state’s emergency declaration and what it means for our community at our next meeting on September 14th. More details on the agenda, including the zoom link, will be available on our website by next Friday.
Tomorrow marks the start of the school year for children enrolled in Madison Public Schools. I want to wish our teachers, administrators, parents, and most importantly our students, a healthy and successful school re-opening for this academic year. As many of you know, the district has opted for a hybrid model of learning where kids will be attending school in-person two days a week, and distance learning three days a week. While school buses will be running daily (except Wednesday) on their regular routes starting tomorrow, many parents will be choosing to drive their kids to and from school through a staggered drop off and pick up system organized at each school. This is likely to lead to an extended period of high traffic volume around all five schools, so avoid travel in these areas when possible.
In addition to our local schools re-opening, we have also seen colleges and universities in our state and across the nation open their doors over the last few weeks for the new academic year. Unfortunately, some schools outside of Connecticut are experiencing unusual spikes in new COVID cases, and already opting to end in-person learning and sending some students back home. We ask that any student who is sent home from their college or university due to a positive COVID test please notify the Madison Department of Public Health by emailing Director Trent Joseph at firstname.lastname@example.org. It is important that the Town is made aware of and continues to monitor all potential(?) cases of people residing in the town of Madison, even if the exposure occurred outside on campus and outside of our community.
I also want to remind residents that after this Labor Day weekend, we will no longer be staffing gate guards and life guards at our beaches. We will continue to monitor visitor volume and adapt policies and staffing should circumstances change.
Finally, I want to highlight again that the Town is launching this month a new communications system called Madison Alerts that will provide important community alerts and information, as well as my First Selectwoman updates. These can be received via an app downloaded on your phone, email, text or phone call. In order to continue receiving alerts and participate in the new system, please subscribe through the town website at https://www.madisonct.org/MadisonAlerts. Starting October 1, Madison Alerts will be the only method to receive all community updates so it is important to subscribe as soon as possible!
Enjoy these remaining days of summer and let’s all continue to work together to keep Madison safe and healthy.