Madison Mayor Bob Courtney unveiled on Friday morning the city’s plan for reopening all departments and services with a goal of returning the community back to full working order by the July 4th holiday.

The city’s multi-stage plan was designed to follow the same path outlined by Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb last week, allowing the city to mirror what is happening in the state as a whole.

Currently, both Indiana and Madison are in Stage 2 of the state’s reopening plan, which runs through May 24. In this stage, city services and city hall are open, as are the golf course, dog park and tennis courts. Public meetings are still being held via Zoom while the city’s sports leagues, all playgrounds, the skate park, basketball courts, city campground, city docks, the Brown Gym, the Rucker Sports Complex, Crystal Beach pool and the Senior Center all remain closed.

Virtually all of those locations will be reopened when Stage 3 begins on May 24, the lone exceptions being the city sports leagues, Crystal Beach and the Senior Center. The sports league will resume at the start of Stage 4, which begins June 14, with Crystal Beach potentially opening that day as well. The Senior Center, whose patrons are in the highest risk category, will remain closed.

Courtney outlined the plan Friday morning during the weekly COVID-19 briefing conducted by the Jefferson County Emergency Management Agency. Courtney said that the plan was developed after consultation not only with the state, but the local health department and the Jefferson County EMA. A copy of the plan will be published on the city’s website.

“We are currently in Stage 2 of Gov. Holcomb’s plan and there are four very specific criteria that need to be met in order to safely progress to the next level,” Courtney said. “Right now, we’re on track to reach that goal. Our statistics are very favorable right now and we continue to monitor the situation. But right now, we are progressing in the right direction.”

Only one new positive COVID-19 case was reported in Jefferson County in the past week, bringing the county’s total to 34 since the pandemic started. There has also been a decline in the number of individuals visiting the COVID isolation clinic at King’s Daughter’s Health, but the county did experience its first COVID-related death this week. Details on that individual are not being released.

“The only details that we are releasing at this time is that the individual is an adult who had been hospitalized for some time because of the illness,” said Blythe Couch, the Public Health Coordinator for Jefferson County.

Couch said that of the 34 confirmed cases in the county, 74% were male and 26% were female, while 74% were from Madison and 18% from Hanover.

Courtney said the city will be ready to act if the numbers turn in the opposite direction.

“The plan that we put out is very flexible. We will continue to do our due diligence and will be proactive instead of reactive,” he said. “Everything we’ve done can be reversed quickly.”

A total of 1,189 tests have been administrated by KDH, according to KDH Director of Emergency Services Shane Williams. He said that the number of requests has been dwindling and as a result, the hospital will close down its COVID-19 hotline on the weekends.

“We only had three calls last weekend. We’ll still have it Monday through Friday,” Williams said. “If anybody shows any symptoms, they can go to the Convenient Care on the corner of Clifty and Cragmont and of course, if it’s an emergency situation, they can dial 911.”

The number of the COVID hotline is 812-801-8010.

Williams said KDH is slowly resuming all of its services that were canceled during the emergency, with physicians now able to see patients. He asks that anybody who enters the hospital please wear a mask or other face covering.

The state of Indiana is currently running a drive-thru testing clinic at North Madison Christian Church through Sunday. The clinic is free of charge and is open to Indiana residents only. It runs from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Couch said the state is running the clinic so she had few other details. She did say that the clinic administered 67 tests on Thursday and that the clinic was hopeful of getting symptomatic patients, health workers or other at-risk individuals, but it would see anybody.

“They seem eager to test as many as they can,” Couch said. “We’ve been telling folks that call here to go and drive up and tell them what’s going on. All they can say is no. I know they’re a little worried about the forecast for storms this weekend. We’ll just have to see how it goes.”

Jefferson County remains one of the least-affected counties in southern Indiana with only Switzerland County, which has reported 15 cases, with fewer among bordering counties. Scott has reported 90 cases, Ripley 106, Jennings 111 and Clark 399. Clark had reported 29 COVID-related deaths, Ripley has had six, Jennings four and Scott two. Switzerland has yet to report a death.

Overall, Indiana has had 26,655 positive cases and 1,550 deaths. Marion County remains the hardest-hit area with a total of 7,995 cases and 465 deaths.

Across the Ohio River, Trimble County is still reporting three positive cases and Carroll County has two. Statewide, Kentucky has reported 7,225 cases and 328 deaths.

The next COVID-19 briefing for Jefferson County will be on Friday, May 22 at 10 a.m.