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Governor orders bars, breweries to close in 6 counties

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Gov. Kim Reynolds is ordering bars, taverns, breweries and night clubs to close at 5 p.m. Thursday in six counties to help stem the spread of the new coronavirus, she announced this morning.

Further, she is "strongly encouraging" all people ages 2 and older to wear a mask or other face covering in public.

"I don't make these decision lightly," Reynolds said. "These actions are absolutely necessary. ... I know today's decision is the right one."

The counties where bars will close are Black Hawk, Dallas, Johnson, Linn, Story and Polk, "where some of the most virus activity is occurring," Reynolds said. Some are homes to the state's regent universities, where returning college students have fueled large spikes in cases.

Iowa had by far its largest one-day increase — 1,475 — in confirmed coronavirus cases in the past day, according to the Des Moines Register.

Reynolds also ordered anyone who hosts a social gathering of more than 10 people to ensure guests can maintain a safe amount of space between themselves.

"I believe that Iowans care about doing the right thing for the greater good," she said.

Reynolds said her new emergency proclamation will be effective until Sept. 20.

Carroll County has reported a handful of new cases in the past day for a total of 325 since the pandemic began. The county's two-week positivity rate is 15.8 percent.

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