Brown Hen Dining Room Open; Apartment Fire on 8th; Risk Level Remains Extreme; 83rd Case For Florence

Brown Hen Dining Room Open

Stacy Brown, owner of the Little Brown Hen, has gone public with her decision to reopen her restaurant against the restrictions currently in place due to COVID-19.  Brown appeared on a Eugene podcast program called Get Real and told of her battle with holding on to her business that she has built for the last 14 years.  Brown says the financial impact has been devastating, and that this decision is not a political one but one of necessity.

“I came to the conclusion that I had to open.  My employees really need to work, I really need to work to support myself and my family and my community, so it’s just been a really stressful, really hard decision.”

Brown says that she and her staff have done everything they can to insure that her restaurant is safe and clean.

“We all took the OSHA COVID class this week, all my staff, and we’re really well informed and we just are really trying to do our very, very best to stay sanitary and clean.”

It is unknown what if any repercussions will come from the move to reopen, but Brown says she has already been turned in to OSHA and has had the police called on her.  There could be some penalties imposed by the state.  Other restaurants that have reopened across the state have received stiff fines for reopening, but Brown says if she doesn’t reopen she will lose her business.  Brown received a PPP loan and a subsequent grant to help, but she says now she is having to dip into savings to pay bills.  Other restaurants in Florence are considering reopening despite the restrictions.

Apartment Fire on 8th

Siuslaw Valley Fire and Rescue responded to another fire in Florence yesterday, this one at the Timber Apartments on 8th street behind Safeway.  Crews arrived finding smoke coming from one of the apartments and were able to quickly extinguish it.  Prior to their arrival employees from Florence True Value across the street had discharged multiple fire extinguishers through the unit’s bedroom window.  According to Chief Michael Schick most of the damage was contained to the bedroom of the unity.  The occupant of the apartment was transported to Peace Harbor hospital with minor injuries.  Florence Police and the Reedsport Fire Department assisted on the scene.  An investigation into the cause of the fire is under investigation.

Risk Level Remains Extreme

Lane County remains in the Extreme Risk category for the coronavirus.  This news after Governor Kate Brown released her updated information on the Pandemic.  Douglas, Coos, Lincoln, Clatsop and Morrow County have all been moved to a High Risk allowing for restaurants and gyms to reopen.  Lane County has seen a decrease in cases and a decrease in hospitalizations according to LCPH’s Jason Davis.  Case counts will have to drop even lower before Lane County can move down on the list, but with the current trends and the introduction of the vaccine, hopes are that it will be sooner than later.

83rd Case For Florence

Yesterday the Florence area saw yet another case of COVID-19 added to the growing list.  83 is the new number.  It is not known if this additional cases is part of the previously released cases involving a social gathering or a stand alone case.  There are 6,729 total cases for Lane County and hospitalizations are currently at 32.  There has also been 91 deaths associated with the virus an addition of 2 new cases in yesterday’s report.  Statewide there were 713 new cases and according to OHA 4,356 doses of the vaccine were administered on Monday for a total of 25,972 doses to date.  All vaccinations occurred at hospitals and long-term care facilities.