6:30 AM - May 5, 2020
6:30 AM - May 5, 2020

Read the latest Philadelphia-area coronavirus coverage here

Philadelphia reported no deaths for the first day since March 24, though the city health commissioner cautioned that more from the past 24 hours could come in later. The number of cases in Camden City passed 1,000, and Camden County reported 48 previously uncounted deaths in April.

Officials in Pennsylvania and New Jersey urged people not to shirk their duty to wear face coverings in public — “Just put on the damn mask,” said Mayor Jim Kenney, specifically addressing people 30 and younger, an age group he noticed over the weekend as especially noncompliant.

Plus, Anthony Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious disease expert, said in a new interview the best scientific evidence shows the coronavirus pandemic likely began in the wild and jumped to humans, and was not made in a lab in China.

12:30 PM - May 5, 2020
12:30 PM - May 5, 2020

What it’s like to dine at a restaurant that reopened during coronavirus

Sign outside the Fleming's Prime Steakhouse in Dunwoody, Ga., helps control foot traffic in the restaurant.
COURTESY FLEMING'S PRIME
Sign outside the Fleming's Prime Steakhouse in Dunwoody, Ga., helps control foot traffic in the restaurant.

Dining rooms in three states began to reopen last week after more than a month of shutdowns to curb the coronavirus pandemic.

Governors in Georgia, Tennessee, and Alaska are attempting a high-wire act, balancing a restart of the economy against calls to protect staff and patrons from the virus.

Still, most restaurateurs — a cross-section of the industry including fast-food chains McDonald’s and Chick-fil-A, as well as fancier, chef-driven independents — have demurred, saying more safety measures need to be in place before they greet and seat customers.

It’s a hot-button issue in Atlanta, where a coalition of 120 restaurateurs under the name #GAHospitalityInitiative is refusing to reopen.

Among the restaurants that did reopen last week was the Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse in Dunwoody, Ga., an Atlanta suburb.

Fleming’s, a high-ticket restaurant owned by Tampa-based Bloomin’ Brands, plans to reopen locations only in areas that executives believe are not hot spots for the coronavirus, spokesperson Elizabeth Watts said. Bloomin', whose brands also include the more casual Outback Steakhouse, Carrabba’s Italian Grill, and Bonefish Grill, will restart six Fleming’s locations in Florida this week. Two in South Florida, which has more confirmed coronavirus cases, will remain closed, she said.

— Michael Klein

11:00 PM - May 4, 2020
11:00 PM - May 4, 2020

How to give yourself a buzz cut (or even a fade) during the shutdown

Should you give yourself a buzz cut? How about a fade?
Cynthia Greer
Should you give yourself a buzz cut? How about a fade?

We’ve been inside for a while. And barbershops and hair salons have been deemed nonessential in Pennsylvania and New Jersey — meaning that, by now, many of our manes may be looking downright shaggy.

Cutting your hair at home isn’t easy, but if you’re game, there is one hairstyle that could be pretty simple to achieve: the humble buzz cut. That hairdo has become popular amid quarantine, with celebs like Snatch star Stephen Graham and Rent’s Anthony Rapp rocking the ultra-short look.

It may seem a little overwhelming at first, but buzzing your own head at home is doable. Here is what you need to know.

— Nick Vadala

9:54 PM - May 4, 2020
9:54 PM - May 4, 2020

Your questions about face masks, answered

A mask covers the face of the Rocky statue in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art last month. People are encouraged to wear masks or face coverings to reduce the spread of the coronavirus.
TIM TAI / Staff Photographer
A mask covers the face of the Rocky statue in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art last month. People are encouraged to wear masks or face coverings to reduce the spread of the coronavirus.

Face masks are now a part of our daily lives.

Ever since guidance from Gov. Tom Wolf and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to cover our face to help keep ourselves (and others) safe, we’ve jury-rigged all kinds of face coverings, from using a scarf, to tying a bandanna, to sewing ourselves something fancy (and, if we can’t sew, using safety pins or any other MacGyvered attachments to keep the fabric from falling apart).

That was fine at first. But now as the pandemic stretches into months, it’s a good time to pause and find some ways to make masks work better and be more comfortable.

We’ve gotten a lot of questions about how to do it better. Here’s everything you need to know about wearing a mask right now.

— Staff reports

9:06 PM - May 4, 2020
9:06 PM - May 4, 2020

Bucks County reports 20 more coronavirus-related deaths

Bucks County reported 20 more coronavirus-related deaths on Monday, raising the county’s overall count to 258.

One of the male fatalities was 42 years old and two other men were in their 50s. One woman was 64 years old. The other victims were in their 70s to 90s.

The county reported 110 new positive cases for a total of 3,429 so far.

There were 253 people hospitalized with 28 listed in critical condition and on ventilators.

The county also reported 882 recoveries from COVID-19.

— Robert Moran

8:14 PM - May 4, 2020
8:14 PM - May 4, 2020

Delaware death toll climbs to 182; two more at elder-care centers

Delaware on Monday reported five additional coronavirus-related deaths, raising the state total to 182.

Of those deaths, two had occurred at long-term care facilities, the state Division of Public Health announced.

The state said it had a total of 5,288 confirmed coronavirus cases.

Of 281 people hospitalized, 68 were in critical condition, it said. The statistics were current through 6 p.m. Sunday.

— Anthony R. Wood

7:56 PM - May 4, 2020
7:56 PM - May 4, 2020
Residents in Washington Square bang pots, ring bells and blow whistles each night to honor doctors, nurses, paramedics, police, and all others on the front line of the coronavirus pandemic.
STEVEN M. FALK / Staff Photographer
Residents in Washington Square bang pots, ring bells and blow whistles each night to honor doctors, nurses, paramedics, police, and all others on the front line of the coronavirus pandemic.

— Steven M. Falk

7:28 PM - May 4, 2020
7:28 PM - May 4, 2020

The psychology behind why it’s hard for us to accept a pandemic

Despite the commands for social distancing, city dwellers still want to be out in the world, and people were out along the Schuylkill River Trail in March.
TOM GRALISH / Staff Photographer
Despite the commands for social distancing, city dwellers still want to be out in the world, and people were out along the Schuylkill River Trail in March.

As the number of COVID-19 cases in the country climbed past one million last week, people in Philadelphia and New Jersey were overcrowding beaches and parks, largely ignoring social distancing and masks — apparently proving that many still cannot accept the gravity of the coronavirus pandemic.

Blame psychology. First off, foresight is not a particular skill for most of us, experts say. And “live free or die” is more than a slogan; it’s an apt description for the mindset of many Americans. Finally, it is hard to assess the threat of an enemy you can’t see.

For all the public health models, charts, and predictions this pandemic has brought us, people are not particularly good at estimating what’s going to happen next, said Thomas F. “Tim” Shipley, a psychology professor at Temple University.

“Part of the reason why people found the onset of the pandemic disconcerting was that they may not have had a mental model of why things were accelerating,” he said.

— Bethany Ao

7:04 PM - May 4, 2020
7:04 PM - May 4, 2020

Pew sends an extra $536,000 in funding to Philly organizations, artists hurt by coronavirus pandemic

The Pew Charitable Trusts and the Pew Center for Arts and Heritage on Monday said they were giving extra funding on top of previously announced awards to 40 local organizations and 22 artists to help offset lost revenue caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

"Arts and culture organizations that have played such an important role in Philadelphia’s revitalization for the past decade or more are also experiencing substantial hardships, and many have been forced to shutter their doors," said Frazierita Klasen, vice president at The Pew Charitable trusts, in an open letter posted Monday on the Pew website.

The organizations will get an extra 5% for operational costs and individual Pew Fellows in the Arts will get an added $2,500.

The combined total of the new funding is around $536,000.

The organizations benefitting from the additional money include the Asian Arts Initiative, The Fabric Workshop and Museum, the William Way LGBT Community Center, and the Presbyterian Historical Society.

— Robert Moran

6:39 PM - May 4, 2020
6:39 PM - May 4, 2020

Wolf defends Pa. coronavirus business shutdowns, urges Supreme Court to reject case

A closed sign is posted on a door at the Midtown III Restaurant & Cocktail Lounge in Philadelphia last week.
MONICA HERNDON / Staff Photographer
A closed sign is posted on a door at the Midtown III Restaurant & Cocktail Lounge in Philadelphia last week.

Gov. Tom Wolf on Monday defended his authority to impose sweeping regulations that have shut down business in much of the state and urged the U.S. Supreme Court to reject a call from Pennsylvania business owners to intervene.

The governor’s response came after Justice Samuel Alito, who has been appointed to oversee matters in the jurisdiction of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, asked for further briefing from the administration in response to a petition filed last week by a group of business owners led by Allegheny County state House candidate Danny DeVito.

Should the Supreme Court take up the case, it would be the first instance of the justices weighing in on similar orders that have been imposed by governors across much of the country during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Pennsylvania business owners have pressed the court to overturn Wolf’s statewide closure of non-essential businesses, saying it is overly broad, capricious and arbitrary, and has wreaked havoc on Pennsylvania’s economy.

Wolf, in his response Monday, maintained that their argument misjudged the extent of his authority to preserve public health and exhibited “an indifference to more than 60,000 lives lost to the COVID-19 pandemic so far.”

— Jeremy Roebuck

6:27 PM - May 4, 2020
6:27 PM - May 4, 2020

Long drives, no staff and face masks: the Senate returns as most of D.C. remains in lockdown

In this April 9, 2020, file photo, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky., walks to the Senate chamber on Capitol Hill in Washington.
Patrick Semansky / AP
In this April 9, 2020, file photo, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky., walks to the Senate chamber on Capitol Hill in Washington.

Sen. Bob Menendez (D., N.J.) drove down I-95 instead of taking Amtrak. Sen. Bob Casey (D., Pa.) planned to attend a hearing using web conferencing. Sen. Pat Toomey (R., Pa.) wore a mask while traveling the halls (like many of his colleagues). And Sen. Cory Booker (D., N.J.) came to work with no staff, instead of the more than 30 aides normally in his cramped office on Capitol Hill.

The U.S. Senate returned to Washington in full Monday for the first time in more than five weeks, as lawmakers, aides and Capitol personnel went back to work in a city that still faces a rising tide of coronavirus cases and where non-essential workers remain under orders to stay home.

On the floor of tradition-bound Senate, parliamentary staffers and clerks wore light blue face masks along with their suits and dresses. So did some (but not all) of the senators who came to speak or sit in the Senate president’s chair, presiding over the mostly empty chamber.

The Senate Chaplain, Barry C. Black, gripped his opening prayer in black gloves. Senators were expected to wipe down their microphones and desks after delivering speeches. The Senate’s attending physician recommends masks, but it isn’t required.

— Jonathan Tamari

5:46 PM - May 4, 2020
5:46 PM - May 4, 2020

Two-thirds of Camden County’s coronavirus deaths have been in nursing homes

Elizabeth Green, a Virtua Health ambulatory tech, walks out a tent while preparing for a new coronavirus testing site to open at the DMV office in Camden.
TIM TAI / Staff Photographer
Elizabeth Green, a Virtua Health ambulatory tech, walks out a tent while preparing for a new coronavirus testing site to open at the DMV office in Camden.

Camden County on Monday updated its coronavirus-related death toll with 48 more cases that occurred in April, raising the county’s total number of deaths to 186.

The deaths occurred from April 12 to 30 and included 19 residents of long-term care facilities, bringing the total recorded fatalities from nursing homes to 125 out of the 186 overall.

The victims were largely in their 70s to 90s, but included a woman in her 30s from Camden City, a man in his 40s from Bellmawr, five more people in their 50s, and a man in his 60s.

As of Monday, the county has reported 3,542 positive cases of COVID-19. More than 1,000 of those cases have been in the city of Camden, which has been deemed a coronavirus hot spot.

“We have reached a difficult stage in this pandemic, one where the mixture of positive and negative developments can make it difficult to tell just how much progress we are making,” Freeholder Director Louis Cappelli Jr. said in a statement.

— Robert Moran

5:26 PM - May 4, 2020
5:26 PM - May 4, 2020

Photos: Distance in the time of coronavirus

The amount of space between us has grown over the last two months. It’s not because we’ve moved away or ended relationships, though those things may be true for some of us.

It’s because of a new boundary, and it’s no less than six feet.

Inquirer photographers set out to explore this new measurement of presumed safety, as the coronavirus pandemic has spread throughout the region, and fewer of us have spent time with love ones or outside our homes.

— Rachel Molenda

5:11 PM - May 4, 2020
5:11 PM - May 4, 2020

For hospital workers at Philly hotels, the pendulum swings between relief and anxiety

Christine Rolon a nurse at Penn Presbyterian Medical Center leaving Homewood Suites by Hilton 4109 Walnut Street Philadelphia Pa April 25, 2020
RAYMOND W HOLMAN JR
Christine Rolon a nurse at Penn Presbyterian Medical Center leaving Homewood Suites by Hilton 4109 Walnut Street Philadelphia Pa April 25, 2020

Penn Presbyterian Medical Center is visible outside the seventh-story window, a presence even when Christine Rolon, an intensive-care nurse, is done with her shifts.

The view is not one that Rolon is used to. Neither is the kitchen where she cooks or the TV that she watches CNN on each night.

Four nights a week, Rolon stays at the Homewood Suites by Hilton in University City, one of the hotels that have opened their doors to Philadelphia’s doctors and nurses afraid of bringing coronavirus home to their families. Health-care workers, who make up 10% to 20% of coronavirus cases nationally, say treating the city’s sickest COVID-19 patients is less frightening than going home afterward.

“We’re with our friends and we’re not scared of what we’re doing. We’re able to be with each other," said Rolon, 38. "We’re scared of getting our families sick.”

— Jason Laughlin

4:47 PM - May 4, 2020
4:47 PM - May 4, 2020

Philadelphia loosens coronavirus testing criteria as availability of supplies improves

The city Department of Public Health is now recommending that anybody experiencing COVID-19 symptoms be tested for the coronavirus, as testing supplies have become more available.

Previously, officials recommended testing be limited to specific priority populations, such as health care workers and people 50 years or older who were experiencing symptoms, due to supply shortages, especially of the nasal swabs used to collect samples and certain chemicals that laboratories need to process them.

Now, the department is encouraging testing for “anyone regardless of age who has a new cough, is experiencing new shortness of breath, or two of the following symptoms: fever, chills, muscle pain, sore throat, headache, new loss of taste or smell.”

The city also recommended testing people who are not showing symptoms of the disease if they have been exposed to a cluster of cases in a congregate living setting, such as a nursing home.

“Until we have the ability to test everyone who may have been exposed to COVID-19 coronavirus, we won’t know how safe it will be to re-open Philadelphia,” Public Health Commissioner Thomas Farley said in a statement Monday. “Expanding our recommendations on who should be tested is the first step in that process.”

— Sean Collins Walsh

4:20 PM - May 4, 2020
4:20 PM - May 4, 2020

Arkoosh: Tracking nursing home coronavirus cases may help Montco officials learn from data

Asked about neighboring counties’ requests to separate nursing home coronavirus cases from their overall count, Montgomery County chair Valerie Arkoosh said that while she believed those cases should be counted as part of the total numbers, it also made sense to track them because officials may be able to learn from the data.

“I do think it’s possible that we may see differing rates of both infection and decline when comparing individuals in the community to individuals who live in a congregate care facility, and that it may be quite appropriate to look at those rates separately, and perhaps assess those rates differently,” said Arkoosh, a physician with a background in public health.

County officials have been tracking the number of cases in long-term care facilities for some time, as well as those within the Montgomery County jail. On Monday, sections were added to the county website’s COVID-19 hub where the public can see the numbers of cases in those facilities.

“These are our grandparents, our parents, our brothers and sisters,” Arkoosh said. “These are human beings …These are members of our community, and they should be treated with respect and care.”

— Allison Steele

3:50 PM - May 4, 2020
3:50 PM - May 4, 2020

More lawmakers call on Gov. Wolf to separate nursing home coronavirus cases from general public when deciding when to reopen county

Republican lawmakers from the Philadelphia suburbs have added their voices to those of Democratic Delaware County council members who are calling on Gov. Tom Wolf to change the metric by which he gauges when an area is ready to reopen amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Earlier Monday, the council had asked Wolf to separately assess new coronavirus cases in its nursing-home population against those among the rest of the population. Health Secretary Rachel Levine said the state will not be doing so.

Tom Killion, a Republican state senator from Delaware County, disagreed with that move.

“A general shutdown in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic was justified," Killion said in a statement. “However, we now know this virus disproportionately affects our seniors and those with underlying conditions.”

“Adhering to the metric previously announced without consideration of congregate care home cases will delay the reopening of our region for weeks if not months.”

Eight Republican Bucks County state representatives — Sen. Bob Mensch, Sen. Tommy Tomlinson, Rep. Frank Farry, Rep. Todd Polinchock, Rep. Meghan Schroeder, Rep. Craig Staats, Rep. Wendi Thomas, and Rep. Kathleen Tomlinson — signed a letter to the governor and the health secretary in favor of this revised metric. Bucks County’s three-member, Democratic-controlled board of commissioners, as well as its health department, are also on board, the legislators said in a statement.

The Bucks County lawmakers signed the letter “with the acknowledgement that we have very little community spread and a significant amount of our cases are from long-term facilities,” they said in a statement.

— Erin McCarthy

3:34 PM - May 4, 2020
3:34 PM - May 4, 2020

Pennsylvania lawmaker compares Wolf administration to Nazi Party

Cris Dush (R., Jefferson) criticized the Wolf administration's transparency, and compared his practices to the Nazi Party and Soviet Russia, during a hearing of the House State Government Committee on Monday, May 4.
PA House
Cris Dush (R., Jefferson) criticized the Wolf administration's transparency, and compared his practices to the Nazi Party and Soviet Russia, during a hearing of the House State Government Committee on Monday, May 4.

Pennsylvania Rep. Cris Dush compared Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration to the Nazi Party during a hearing of the House State Government Committee this afternoon.

Dush of the 66th Legislative District criticized Wolf’s lack of transparency in releasing coronavirus data, and compared his practices to the Nazi Party and Soviet Russia.

“The press has been having a very difficult time fulfilling its responsibility to the public getting information out because this governor has repeatedly refused all sorts of information,” said Dush, a representative since 2015.

“More and more I go back to the Democratic National Socialist Party, the Nazi party, I go to the Union of Soviet Socialists Republics, the USSR. This is a socialist playbook,” he said.

“Chairman this is outrageous,” interjected Rep. Kevin Boyle of House District 172. “Stop it with the Nazi references. It is offensive and wrong, stop this.”

“It’s history,” Dush responded.

Wolf’s administration has been criticized by legislators across both sides of the aisle for its lack of transparency in coronavirus case data. While other states have publicized data on the race of COVID-19 patients for weeks, Pennsylvania has struggled to collect comprehensive demographics, which experts and some lawmakers say are vital to public health officials’ ability to target resources and begin to scale back social distancing.

Then, last week, Republicans in the state legislature subpoenaed the Wolf administration for documents related to its controversial coronavirus waiver process for businesses, which allowed select businesses to reopen despite the statewide shutdown.

“This is a socialist playbook and I have to say that it’s important for the people of this state to start having access to information rather than having it blown off to the side and hidden for an agenda,” said Dush.

— Ellie Rushing

3:29 PM - May 4, 2020
3:29 PM - May 4, 2020

Mayor Jim Kenney to young Philadelphians: ‘Just put on the damn mask’

Mayor Jim Kenney puts his face mask back on after speaking at a press conference at the almost completed Coronavirus facility at the Liacouras Center, in Philadelphia, April 10, 2020. The facility will open on Monday. Staff and volunteers are still doing some finishing work on the facility.
JESSICA GRIFFIN / Staff Photographer
Mayor Jim Kenney puts his face mask back on after speaking at a press conference at the almost completed Coronavirus facility at the Liacouras Center, in Philadelphia, April 10, 2020. The facility will open on Monday. Staff and volunteers are still doing some finishing work on the facility.

Mayor Jim Kenney said that, while riding his bike for exercise this weekend, he noticed a lot of people who appeared to be 30 years old or younger not wearing masks.

“Young people for some reason or another refuse to put the mask on. … These young folks don’t think of their parents or their grandparents or themselves when they do this,” Kenney said at a virtual news conference Monday. “Just think about what nurses and doctors and hospital personnel have to go through every day, and just put on the damn mask.”

The city has so far tried to encourage cooperation with public health orders through verbal warnings and public messaging campaigns, but Managing Director Brian Abernathy said officials will consider stricter measures, like increasing the number of tickets and fines police officers issue in relation to Kenney’s stay-at-home order, if residents appear to be taking social distancing measures less seriously as the weather improves.

— Sean Collins Walsh

3:10 PM - May 4, 2020
3:10 PM - May 4, 2020

‘The situation here in Philadelphia is starting to look better,’ health commissioner says

With FMC Tower and Center City Philadelphia (in background) obscurred by fog, a train passes by Franklin Field (far left).
ELIZABETH ROBERTSON / Staff Photographer
With FMC Tower and Center City Philadelphia (in background) obscurred by fog, a train passes by Franklin Field (far left).

Philadelphia on Monday reported no new coronavirus deaths and just 186 new confirmed cases, continuing a downward trend in new infections that is giving officials optimism that the city is turning the corner on the pandemic.

“We’ve been through some tough times in this epidemic, but over the weekend the situation here in Philadelphia is starting to look better,” Public Health Commissioner Thomas Farley said at a virtual news conference Monday. “This is now the third day in a row where the daily case count is below 400, and that’s despite the fact that we are increasing the number of tests that we are doing, so that clearly is good news.”

Farley said that while the number of new cases may rise as delayed test results come in from some labs, the city’s trajectory is promising. There have been 16,040 confirmed cases in Philadelphia since the pandemic began. The official coronavirus death toll in the city, now at 726, actually went down on Monday after a reporting error for one previous case was fixed, Farley said.

Health-care facilities are keeping up with their caseloads, Farley said.

There were 982 coronavirus patients in Philadelphia hospitals as of Monday, and 1,807 across Southeastern Pennsylvania. Twenty-eight percent of hospital beds in the region were available, as were 27% of intensive care unit beds.

— Sean Collins Walsh

2:54 PM - May 4, 2020
2:54 PM - May 4, 2020

All four of Philly’s major municipal unions have agreed to short-term contracts as Kenney administration navigates pandemic

Leaders of the union for blue-collar city workers have agreed to a one-year contract with Mayor Jim Kenney’s administration that provides for 2% raises and largely continues the terms of the current contract, which expires this summer.

District Council 33 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees was the last of the four major municipal unions to agree to one-year deals with the city this spring. Typically, the contracts last four years, but Kenney pushed for short-term deals as the administration navigates the coronavirus pandemic.

“With all four of our municipal unions agreeing to extensions, we can focus on the challenges at hand and give all parties time to determine what makes the most sense for a longer-term deal in light of the unprecedented circumstances we now face,” Kenney said at a virtual news conference Monday.

The deal, which will now go to the D.C. 33’s membership for approval, includes one-time bonuses ranging from $250 to $750 for employees who had to work on site in April.

The one-year contract for the city’s white-collar workers included similar 2% raises. Police officers or firefighters got 2.5% pay bumps in their deals. AFSCME Local 159B, which represents correctional officers and youth detention counselors and is part of D.C. 33, also got 2.5% increases.

The deal, which needs to be approved by D.C. 33’s members, comes as the administration prepares to begin layoffs that will help close the $649 million hole that the coronavirus is projected to leave in the city budget.

Some department heads have begun talking to exempt employees, those without union representation, who might be affected, but no official severance notices have yet been issued, Managing Director Brian Abernathy said Monday.

Layoffs for some members of D.C. 33 and the union for white-collar workers, AFSCME D.C. 47, will occur this summer, Abernathy said. Many of those layoffs will be of part-time or seasonal workers, he said. Police officers and firefighters are not expected to be laid off.

— Sean Collins Walsh

2:27 PM - May 4, 2020
2:27 PM - May 4, 2020

Video: How this black-owned Philadelphia funeral home handles a community’s coronavirus losses

— Lauren Schneiderman

2:19 PM - May 4, 2020
2:19 PM - May 4, 2020

Lawsuit: Federal N.J. prison headed for coronavirus ‘catastrophe’

A still from video footage recorded by an inmate with a smuggled cellphone at the federal prison in Fort Dix, N.J. , shows prisoners in the yard, where recommended social distancing guidelines don't appear to be followed. The video was posted to Twitter last month.
Twitter video
A still from video footage recorded by an inmate with a smuggled cellphone at the federal prison in Fort Dix, N.J. , shows prisoners in the yard, where recommended social distancing guidelines don't appear to be followed. The video was posted to Twitter last month.

The federal prison in Fort Dix, N.J., is speeding toward a coronavirus “catastrophe,” the ACLU said Monday as it filed suit over what attorneys described as deteriorating conditions in the corrections facility where 40 inmates are ill.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court in New Jersey on behalf of four medically vulnerable prisoners, seeks their immediate release into home confinement and class-action status from the court.

It is one of a number of similar court actions — including ones against the Philadelphia jails and the federal detention center in Center City — that the ACLU and advocates have filed in recent weeks as the number of coronavirus outbreaks in corrections facilities continues to rise across the country.

In each, the U.S. Bureau of Prisons has pushed back against the idea of widespread inmate releases, arguing that they have taken adequate precautions to contain outbreaks behind their prison walls and protect inmates from the virus’ spread.

Still, federal judges in Ohio and other states have ordered everything from wider testing to the release of certain prisoners in response to suits at the site of some of the largest federal prison outbreaks.

Fort Dix, located in Burlington County, houses nearly 3,000 prisoners in a main facility and satellite minimum security camp, where inmates are housed in rows of dorm-style bunk beds no more than three feet apart, making social distancing impossible.

Lawyers said they hope a judge will impose more stringent safety precautions for the others that remain behind bars.

Forty Fort Dix inmates and three corrections officers are ill — a number ACLU attorneys say is almost certainly an undercount. The Bureau of Prisons has not released data on inmates and staff who tested positive but have recovered or been released or transferred to other facilities.

— Jeremy Roebuck

2:07 PM - May 4, 2020
2:07 PM - May 4, 2020

NFL cancels international games for 2020 season

The NFL canceled its international games for the coming season, announcing Monday that it intends to play all games in the U.S.

The league made the change as it continues to attempt to plan for the 2020 season amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The NFL said it made the switch “in order for the entire season to be played in NFL teams’ stadia under consistent protocols focused on the well-being of players, personnel and fans,” and added in its written announcement that Commissioner Roger Goodell “made this decision after consultation with our clubs, national and local governments, the NFL Players Association, medical authorities and international stadium partners.”

— The Washington Post

1:56 PM - May 4, 2020
1:56 PM - May 4, 2020

Inside Philly’s coronavirus quarantine hotel for those with nowhere else to go

The Holiday Inn Express at 13th and Walnut in Center City.
HEATHER KHALIFA / Staff Photographer
The Holiday Inn Express at 13th and Walnut in Center City.

The Center City Holiday Inn, Philadelphia’s hastily organized quarantine site for people who can’t isolate in their homes — or have no homes — is having problems meeting the medical and personal needs of the people it is housing, say residents and staffers.

Though grateful for a place to lay their heads during the pandemic, some residents note that they lack cleaning supplies (there’s no maid service), they sometimes cannot get their prescription medications refilled, and food has been meager.

City officials have stressed the hotel, which has been up and running for just under a month, is not intended to be a medical facility. But staffers say some residents have medical needs they cannot fully accommodate.

Such concerns, officials say, are the growing pains associated with such an unprecedented housing effort, but they are learning from their mistakes. The city, which is spending $170,000 a month to rent the Holiday Inn, in April began renting a second quarantine space for $119,000 at a Fairfield Inn several blocks away.

— Aubrey Whelan

1:32 PM - May 4, 2020
1:32 PM - May 4, 2020

N.J. state parks grapple with crowds after reopening

Batsto Lake, in the Wharton State Forest in New Jersey's Pine Barrens, in February.
Tom Gralish / Staff Photographer
Batsto Lake, in the Wharton State Forest in New Jersey's Pine Barrens, in February.

Kiyomi Locker, feeling cooped-up, took a drive Saturday afternoon to newly reopened Batsto in New Jersey’s Wharton State Forest but what she found was “unsettling:” Lines of cars, and many people out without wearing masks and not practicing social distancing — the same behaviors that forced the state to shut down the parks in April to slow the spread of coronavirus.

“I didn’t even get out of the car because it was just unsafe,” said Locker, who lives in Ocean County and posted a video on a Facebook group about the experience.

Crowds were enough that the state Department of Environmental Protection’s Division of Parks and Forestry wrote in an all-caps email blast on Sunday, saying multiple locations were “overrun” after Gov. Phil Murphy announced parks could reopen Saturday: Barnegat Lighthouse State Park, Bulls Island Recreation Area, Delaware & Raritan Canal State Park, Hacklebarney State Park, Round Valley Recreation Area, Wharton State Forest, Wawayanda State Park, and Worthington State Forest.

Others on social media noted the issues cropping up, while some said they saw no problems. And there were other reports of parks where crowding was not an issue and people seemed to be complying with guidelines.

Murphy closed all state and county parks April 7 amid the coronavirus outbreak because too many people were not practicing social distancing outdoors.

During a briefing Monday, he portrayed the opening of the parks as largely successful, and said the overwhelming majority of park goers took precautions with few incidents of “knucklehead behavior” that would require him to reverse course and close the parks again.

— Frank Kummer

1:23 PM - May 4, 2020
1:23 PM - May 4, 2020

Murphy: N.J. health officials ‘certain’ that coronavirus death toll is underreported

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy on Monday noted another 1,621 people have tested positive for the coronavirus, bringing the state’s positive caseload to 128,269. Another 45 people have died from the virus, increasing the state’s death toll to 7,910. Health officials are “certain that these numbers are underreported” given network outages in the state system over the weekend.

Murphy noted hospital systems in each region of the state are less taxed by the coronavirus pandemic, as the curve of infections flattens in New Jersey. Hospitals in the north and central parts of the state are seeing admissions drop, while the southern part is seeing them flatten.

Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli noted 4,287 people are hospitalized in New Jersey for the disease, with 1,610 in critical care. Only 1,189 individuals are on ventilators in the state, the lowest it has been in over a month, Murphy said.

Persichilli noted 508 long term care facilities are experiencing a coronavirus outbreak, accounting for 22,061 of the state’s positive cases and 4,010 of its deaths.

— Pranshu Verma

1:15 PM - May 4, 2020
1:15 PM - May 4, 2020

Photos: See the new normal, as Pennsylvania and New Jersey continue to cope with the coronavirus pandemic

People will get a glimpse of the region’s new normal this week, as states start rolling out reopening plans.

But in Pennsylvania, the state has reached nearly 50,000 coronavirus cases. And in New Jersey, Gov. Phil Murphy announced that students will not return to school for the rest of the academic year.

This weekend, the annual “Clown Crawl,” which usually moves from bar to bar in Philly, was held outside to abide by social distancing guidelines issued in the last two months. It was renamed the “Clown Sprawl.”

See The Inquirer’s visual reporting from the eighth week of the pandemic below.

— Rachel Molenda

1:12 PM - May 4, 2020
1:12 PM - May 4, 2020

Levine on disparaging comments during pandemic response: 'People sometimes say things that they wouldn’t otherwise say’

Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine speaking at the virtual press conference.
Commonwealth Media Services
Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine speaking at the virtual press conference.

Health Secretary Rachel Levine addressed hateful online comments directed at her since she became the face of Pennsylvania’s coronavirus response. Levine, the first transgender person appointed to a Pennsylvania cabinet position, has received disparaging, mean comments when she does her daily press conferences.

“My message is as Secretary of Health, I am working with the governor to do the best I can in terms of helping Pennsylvania through this unprecedented global pandemic,” she said. ”I understand at times like this, it’s very stressful. People sometimes say things that they wouldn’t otherwise say.”

“What I am going to do is stay laser-focused in helping Pennsylvania through this pandemic and assisting the governor and the governor’s office.”

— Erin McCarthy

1:04 PM - May 4, 2020
1:04 PM - May 4, 2020

Collingswood man runs 20.20 miles to fundraise for high school students who can’t afford yearbooks

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy singled out a Collingswood resident for his efforts to honor the Class of 2020.

Patrick Rodio ran 20.20 miles to fundraise for yearbooks for Collingswood High students who cannot afford them.

Now that in-person instruction is officially canceled for the rest of the term in New Jersey, “this act takes on greater meaning,” Murphy said. “For some students in Collingswood, the yearbook will be their bank of memories of a school year that will be unlike any other.”

— Kristen A. Graham

1:00 PM - May 4, 2020
1:00 PM - May 4, 2020

Murphy: ‘Knuckleheads’ who flout social distancing rules ‘need to be called out’

A digital sign on Rt 130 northbound at Union Avenue in Pennsauken reads “ DON’T BE A KNUCKLEHEAD” and “KEEP A SAFE DISTANCE” on the next screen.
ELIZABETH ROBERTSON / Staff Photographer
A digital sign on Rt 130 northbound at Union Avenue in Pennsauken reads “ DON’T BE A KNUCKLEHEAD” and “KEEP A SAFE DISTANCE” on the next screen.

Gov. Phil Murphy on Monday defended his habit of using “knucklehead” as a way to describe individuals who flout his stay at home orders and social distancing recommendations.

“The definition is a stupid bumbling inept person which I think is … quite consistent with some of the behavior,” Murphy said. “Overwhelmingly folks are doing the right things, but for the very small minority who are not, they need to be called out. That’s why we’re doing it.”

Murphy said someone suggested he use ‘blockhead’ or ‘numbskull’ as an alternative, but he decided to stay the course.

“I like knucklehead because I think it's got three syllables, it's got a little bit more oomph,” Murphy said.

— Pranshu Verma

12:50 PM - May 4, 2020
12:50 PM - May 4, 2020

Despite Delco’s request, Pa. won’t separate nursing home coronavirus cases when deciding whether to reopen county

Pennsylvania will not be separating cases in nursing homes from cases in the general population when assessing whether to reopen a part of the state, despite the request of Delaware County officials.

“We have been asked this question before, and we are not going to separate nursing home cases from other cases in counties," Health Secretary Rachel Levine said. "What we have certainly learned in this global pandemic of COVID-19 is that we are all interconnected. One section of our community … impacts the general community, and the community impacts that facility.”

Levine said it is impossible to separate the communities, particularly because staff members go back and forth between the facility and the broader community.

Health officials are looking to expand testing across the commonwealth, Levine said, and have discussed expanding testing in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, as well as in the counties entering the yellow phase.

“We’ll certainly want to expand testing in the suburban collar counties around Philadelphia,” she said, noting they will talk with local health officials there.

Delaware County officials asked state officials to prioritize the hard-hit region since it serves as “the economic engine that drives the state economy and contributes a disproportionate share of the state’s tax revenue,” they said.

— Erin McCarthy

12:37 PM - May 4, 2020
12:37 PM - May 4, 2020

Pennsylvania surpasses 50,000 confirmed coronavirus cases

Pennsylvania’s official count of coronavirus cases surpassed 50,000 on Monday as Health Secretary Rachel Levine announced 825 newly confirmed positive cases.

Of those cases, 3,084 have been in health-care workers, and 9,335 have been linked to 494 long-term care facilities across the commonwealth. 2,458 Pennsylvanians have died.

As of Monday, hospitals continued to avoid an overwhelming surge, with beds, ICU beds, and ventilators available.

— Erin McCarthy

12:28 PM - May 4, 2020
12:28 PM - May 4, 2020
Jay Lopez, vendor saw a need and switched from umbrellas to face masks during coronavirus pandemic. He is selling along N. 5th St. at Lindley St. in Philadelphia on Monday, May 4, 2020.
ALEJANDRO A. ALVAREZ / Staff Photographer
Jay Lopez, vendor saw a need and switched from umbrellas to face masks during coronavirus pandemic. He is selling along N. 5th St. at Lindley St. in Philadelphia on Monday, May 4, 2020.

— Alejandro A. Alvarez

12:21 PM - May 4, 2020
12:21 PM - May 4, 2020

Murphy rescinds order for $1.28 billion surplus, says he will veto bills to shore up N.J.'s finances

Gov. Phil Murphy enacted a set of measures Monday to shore up state finances as they become significantly impacted by the coronavirus pandemic that has ravaged the state.

Murphy rescinded an executive order he signed last year ordering the state treasurer to build up a $1.28 billion surplus in state funds, and signaled his intention to veto a number of bills coming out of the legislature that would have directed money to to “any number of causes and programs.” He did not specify which bills.

“I have no other choice,” Murphy said. “We need the federal government to step forward with significant investment in our states, both red and blue, to prevent our recovery from being held back, because we cannot fund it.”

Murphy has been imploring federal officials for weeks to direct over $150 billion in direct aid to states, warning New Jersey may have to lay off teachers, first responders and other essential workers if the state’s financial situation remains the same.

He has also railed against lawmakers for restrictions they put on state bailout money under the CARES Act passed in April.

— Pranshu Verma

11:52 AM - May 4, 2020
11:52 AM - May 4, 2020

N.J. schools closed for the rest of the year at Gov. Murphy’s order

Teachers at KIPP charter schools caravan past student homes in Camden on April 10. Students will remain at home for the rest of the school year under Gov. Phil Murphy's order.
ELIZABETH ROBERTSON / Staff Photographer
Teachers at KIPP charter schools caravan past student homes in Camden on April 10. Students will remain at home for the rest of the school year under Gov. Phil Murphy's order.

New Jersey students will not return to classrooms this school year, Gov. Phil Murphy said Monday, joining neighboring Pennsylvania, Delaware and New York in keeping school buildings closed during the coronavirus outbreak.

The governor had previously closed schools through May 15, saying he wanted to leave open the possibility of a return to in-person classes.

Most states have closed schools for the year or recommended they not reopen as the virus continues to upend the education system, forcing an abrupt transition to remote learning.

— Maddie Hanna, Kristen A. Graham

11:32 AM - May 4, 2020
11:32 AM - May 4, 2020

ESPN to start broadcasting live baseball from South Korea

First base umpire Lee Gye-sung, right, wearing a mask and gloves as a precaution against the coronavirus, calls Doosan Bears’ Jung Soo-bin out during the pre-season baseball game between the Bears and LG Twins in Seoul, South Korea on Tuesday, April 21.
Lee Jin-man / AP
First base umpire Lee Gye-sung, right, wearing a mask and gloves as a precaution against the coronavirus, calls Doosan Bears’ Jung Soo-bin out during the pre-season baseball game between the Bears and LG Twins in Seoul, South Korea on Tuesday, April 21.

Live baseball is returning to ESPN this week, but you’ll either need to stay up late or set an early alarm to catch the action.

Starting on Tuesday, the network will begin airing live games from the KBO League – South Korea’s most popular sports league. For now, ESPN will air six live games per week — mostly on ESPN2 — but the network said in a statement the schedule could change on a week-to-week basis.

The first game to air will be the league’s Opening Day matchup between the NC Dinos and. Samsung Lions – on Tuesday, May 5, at 1 a.m. EDT.

A full schedule for the week can be found on the ESPN website.

Longtime ESPN announcers Karl Ravech and Eduardo Perez will call the league’s first three games, with other baseball commentators contributing to the network’s coverage.

The games could be a preview of what Major League Baseball will look like in the U.S. once it is able to return. KBO League games are played in front of empty stadiums, players have their temperatures checked twice a day, and anyone not wearing a baseball uniform is required to wear a face mask.

Thanks to a sophisticated testing and tracing system, South Korea has weathered the coronavirus pandemic better than most countries, even without putting strict lockdowns in place. As of Monday morning, the country had just 10,801 positive cases and 252 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.

— Rob Tornoe

11:05 AM - May 4, 2020
11:05 AM - May 4, 2020

Delaware County asks Pa. to count COVID-19 cases in nursing homes separately from general population

Delaware County officials are asking Gov. Tom Wolf to separately assess new coronavirus cases in the nursing-home population against those among the rest of the population as the county looks to reopen.

The county council noted that for Delaware County to reach Gov. Tom Wolf’s benchmark for reopening, it would have to record an average of 20 new cases per day for two weeks. Last week, the county averaged 139 new cases per day. But 70% of deaths and 20% of all positive cases are from long-term care facilities, the council said.

“Council views our current situation as two separate challenges that require separate approaches,” councilman Kevin Madden said at a news conference Monday, reading from a statement prepared by the council.

The Democratic-controlled body said if Wolf, a fellow Democrat, would assess the cases in the community outside nursing homes, the county may begin to at least partially reopen “before too long."

To aid in reopening, Madden said Delaware County council is also joining with leaders of other Southeastern Pennsylvania counties in calling on Wolf to prioritize increasing testing in the hard-hit region, which, he called, “the economic engine that drives the state economy and contributes a disproportionate share of the state’s tax revenue.”

“The governor has outlined a plan for reopening,” Madden said, “and the Philadelphia region must be given the necessary resources to reach the targets set out.”

Even if given these tools, Madden said officials would not rush to reopen too quickly at the risk of vulnerable residents and would continue to prioritize their health. "Regardless of political party or background, we all want the same things,” he said. “We all want to see businesses open. None of us want to see others die from the virus.”

— Erin McCarthy

10:21 AM - May 4, 2020
10:21 AM - May 4, 2020

Carnival Cruise Line looking to set sail again Aug. 1

Carnival Cruise Line will begin to phase-in cruises beginning Aug. 1, the company announced on Monday.

Eight of the company’s ships will resume cruises out of three ports — Galveston, Texas,, Miami and Port Canaveral, Fla. They include:

  • Galveston: Carnival Dream, Carnival Freedom, and Carnival Vista
  • Miami: Carnival Horizon, Carnival Magic, and Carnival Sensation
  • Port Canaveral: Carnival Breeze and Carnival Elation

Outside of those eight ships and three ports, Carnival said all other North American and Australian cruises will be canceled through Aug. 31. The company also canceled all Carnival Spirit Alaskan cruises from Seattle, a Sept. 25 Carnival Spirit Vancouver-Honolulu cruise. and the Honolulu-Brisbane transpacific cruise on Oct. 6.

The company said guests and travel advisers impacted by cancellations and scheduling changes will be notified about their travel options.

— Rob Tornoe

9:50 AM - May 4, 2020
9:50 AM - May 4, 2020

Dow opens down more than 300 points

Stocks opened the week down on Monday as investors continue to face an uncertain economic future, even as certain states begin to loosen coronavirus restrictions and allow some businesses to reopen.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened down over 320 points, about 1.3%. The Nasdaq opened down 65 points (0.75%), while the S&P 500 fell about 30 points (about 1%).

Adding uncertainly to the short-term economic outlook was Warren Buffett, who announced that Berkshire Hathaway sold all of its airline holdings due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, reportedly worth more than $4 billion.

“The world has changed for the airlines,” Buffett said during Berkshire’s annual shareholder meeting Saturday. “I think there are certain industries, and unfortunately, I think that the airline industry, among others, that are really hurt by a forced shutdown by events that are far beyond our control.”

Analysts said the markets also were concerned about tensions with China as President Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo hammer Beijing over the origin of the COVID-19 virus.

— Rob Tornoe

8:56 AM - May 4, 2020
8:56 AM - May 4, 2020

Supreme Court meets by phone, broadcasts arguments live for the first time

The Supreme Court will for the first time provide live audio of oral arguments for the next two weeks, as justices are forced to hear cases remotely due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The first case, United States Patent and Trademark Office et al v. Booking.com, is scheduled to begin today at 10 a.m. Both sides will offer opening statements, followed by each justice getting at least two minutes worth of questioning. Each side will have a total of 30 minutes to make its case.

Chief Justice John Roberts will ask questions first, with the remaining justices following in order of seniority: Clarence Thomas, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Samuel Alito, Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan, Neil Gorsuch, and Brett Kavanaugh.

The arguments case can be heard live beginning at 10 a.m. here.

— Rob Tornoe

8:38 AM - May 4, 2020
8:38 AM - May 4, 2020

Announcement expected on whether N.J. schools will remain closed for remainder of academic year

While schools in Pennsylvania, Delaware, and New York have been closed for the rest of the academic year, students and parents in New Jersey remain in limbo awaiting an announcement by Gov. Phil Murphy.

On Friday, Murphy said he planned on announcing a decision about schools early this week, possibly as early as today.

All public and private schools, as well as colleges and universities, are currently closed statewide through at least May 15.

Murphy is scheduled to give his daily briefing at noon, and can be viewed live on the governor’s official YouTube page.

— Rob Tornoe

7:24 AM - May 4, 2020
7:24 AM - May 4, 2020

J.Crew files for bankruptcy protection as retailers deal for COVID-19 crisis setbacks

J. Crew store inside Liberty Place in Center City Philadephia as seen on Monday afternoon, May 4, 2020. The J. Crew company filed for bankruptcy protection. Businesses have been hit hard during closures due to Covid-19.
ALEJANDRO A. ALVAREZ / Staff Photographer
J. Crew store inside Liberty Place in Center City Philadephia as seen on Monday afternoon, May 4, 2020. The J. Crew company filed for bankruptcy protection. Businesses have been hit hard during closures due to Covid-19.

J.Crew, the popular clothing company, filed for bankruptcy protection Monday morning, the first major retailer to make such a move since the coronavirus pandemic forced stores across the country to close.

J.Crew Group, which owns both J.Crew and Madewell, announced it filed for Chapter 11 proceedings in federal bankruptcy court in the Eastern District of Virginia. The company said in a statement it has reached a deal to convert $1.65 billion of its debt into equity, and expects to stay in business.

“As we look to reopen our stores as quickly and safely as possible, this comprehensive financial restructuring should enable our business and brands to thrive for years to come.” J.Crew Group CEO Jan Singer said in a statement.

J.Crew employs roughly 10,000 employees and operates 506 stores across the country, according to their website.

— Rob Tornoe

7:08 AM - May 4, 2020
7:08 AM - May 4, 2020

Farewell from a distance: How this black-owned Philadelphia funeral home handles a community’s coronavirus losses

Staff from the Terry Funeral Home carry a casket to the hearse for a burial on April 16 in Philadelphia. The staff has taken on the role as pallbearers since the coronavirus outbreak because of social distancing measures. Pictured from left to right are Isiah Banks, Albert Aponte, Paula Wilder, Herb Baker, and Fateemah Jones.
DAVID MAIALETTI / Staff Photographer
Staff from the Terry Funeral Home carry a casket to the hearse for a burial on April 16 in Philadelphia. The staff has taken on the role as pallbearers since the coronavirus outbreak because of social distancing measures. Pictured from left to right are Isiah Banks, Albert Aponte, Paula Wilder, Herb Baker, and Fateemah Jones.

Since the pandemic began, Terry Funeral Home owner Gregory Burrell’s days have been filled with difficult conversations. The number of direct cremations is higher than ever Home. In any given year, his establishment handles an estimated 5% of the 6,800 black deaths in Philadelphia.

But 2020 is not just any year. Black people in Philadelphia — and in other U.S. cities including Chicago, Atlanta, and Los Angeles — have been disproportionately affected by the virus. Although black residents represent 44% of the city’s population, they currently represent 54% of COVID-19 deaths, according to the data available. As of Friday night, there were 638 deaths in the city, racial analysis was available for 508 of them. Out of these 508 deaths in the city, 273 were black residents.

Given stringent public health limitations around gatherings and human contact, concerns around how the bereaved will reconcile losses are universal. In the black community, the new restrictions have disrupted centuries-old funeral traditions and the ways they can collectively grieve.

“The impact that it’s having on families who’d like to have the traditional homegoing service — they are being robbed of that as a result of this virus.” said Burrell, 59, of the black church ceremony, which emphasizes that the spirit making it to heaven calls for jubilation. “And it’s disheartening for me, having experienced death in my own family. Just recently, my wife passed away a year ago. I could not imagine not being able to have the homegoing that she wanted for herself.”

— Cassie Owens

6:00 AM - May 4, 2020
6:00 AM - May 4, 2020

Temple president: ‘We have decided against furloughing employees at this time’

A man walks across the nearly empty Temple University campus on March 17, as the coronavirus pandemic began to strengthen its grip on Philadelphia.
TIM TAI / Staff Photographer
A man walks across the nearly empty Temple University campus on March 17, as the coronavirus pandemic began to strengthen its grip on Philadelphia.

Faced with a budget shortfall of more than $40 million as a result of the coronavirus, Temple University has decided against furloughing hundreds of employees, the president was to announce to the campus community Monday morning.

“We understand the painful impact furloughs would have on our staff, some of whom are the sole wage-earners in their families,” Richard M. Englert was to announce. “The cost of taking such an action at this time is simply too high."

Englert, who has worked at Temple for more than 40 years in many administrative roles before becoming president in 2016, also intends to take a 20% pay cut. He is currently paid $800,000. More than 470 nonunion employees who are paid more than $100,000 will take a 5% pay cut, and 62 officers, deans, and advisers to the president will take a 10% cut.

— Susan Snyder

5:30 AM - May 4, 2020
5:30 AM - May 4, 2020

Public companies in Pa. and N.J. got millions in emergency coronavirus PPP loans meant for small businesses

On April 2, the CEO of Windtree Therapeutics, a biotech and medical-device company, boasted of “tremendous progress” the company made in 2019, capped by a December stock sale that netted the Bucks County firm $23 million.

“Our strengthened balance sheet allows us to focus on our multiple clinical development programs,” chief executive Craig Fraser said in a statement announcing the company’s fourth-quarter financial results.

Just a week later, Windtree applied for an emergency small-business relief loan available as part of the sweeping coronavirus economic rescue package. On April 20, the Warrington-based company, which employs 32 people, won approval for a $546,600 loan, regulatory filings show.

Windtree was among at least 20 publicly traded companies in Pennsylvania and New Jersey that won approval for at least $48.6 million in government-backed loans under the troubled Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), according to an Inquirer analysis of records filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

— Andrew Seidman

5:00 AM - May 4, 2020
5:00 AM - May 4, 2020

Love From Philly, the virtual music fest, closes out with the War On Drugs and Kurt Vile

Eric Bazilian of The Hooters performing from his basement in Stockholm, Sweden on Sunday on the final day of the Love From Philly virtual music fest fundraiser for Philadelphia musicians and venue workers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.
Love From Philly
Eric Bazilian of The Hooters performing from his basement in Stockholm, Sweden on Sunday on the final day of the Love From Philly virtual music fest fundraiser for Philadelphia musicians and venue workers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

The coronavirus pandemic has stopped the live music business in its tracks and taken away the livelihoods of musicians and music workers everywhere, including Philadelphia.

But along with money, COVID-19 has also denied bands something else they desperately need: a sense of community. Live streams help musicians link up with fans, but it’s trickier for bands to connect with each other as a living, breathing music scene during life in quarantine.

Enter Love From Philly, the virtual music festival that kicked off at 5 p.m. Friday and closed out with DJ sets by Cosmo Baker and RJD2 late Sunday evening.

The fest showcased more than 70 rockers, rappers, singer-songwriters and jazz musicians over three days, building up to closing night headliners the War On Drugs, Man Man, Kurt Vile, Freeway and surprise guest Amos Lee.

— Dan DeLuca

2:29 PM - May 5, 2020
2:29 PM - May 5, 2020

Morning Roundup: Spring, sunshine and sickness. Coronavirus continues to kill as states move to reopen

Bob Pacella, of Cape May, reels in a sand shark on the beach in Cape May on Sunday.
ELIZABETH ROBERTSON / Staff Photographer
Bob Pacella, of Cape May, reels in a sand shark on the beach in Cape May on Sunday.

The bright bloom of spring brought more sunshine and warmth to the Philadelphia region on Sunday. Along with more bleak reports of sickness. And more death.

The numbers that define the human cost of the coronavirus pandemic continued to rise, even as plans to restart stalled state and local economies crept forward, and shutdown-weary people swarmed newly reopened parks in New Jersey.

Governors in New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware joined three other northeastern states in a pact to collectively buy $5 billion in personal protective equipment, erecting a barrier against future shortages while saving taxpayers money.

Pennsylvania neared a milestone 50,000 coronavirus cases on Sunday. A line of dogs — and their chastened owners — got chased off a New Jersey beach. The annual bar-to-bar “Clown Crawl,” renamed the “Clown Sprawl” to reflect social-distancing guidelines, drew only a handful of costumed funny men and women.

Everywhere, it seemed, the persistent chirp of songbirds made it almost possible to believe that the crisis was ending, or at least stabilized, even as some of the world’s biggest countries reported new highs in infections.

Jeff Gammage, Pranshu Verma and Amy Rosenberg

4:30 AM - May 4, 2020
4:30 AM - May 4, 2020

Today’s Inquirer Front Page

The Philadelphia Inquirer front page for Monday, May 4, 2020.
Philadelphia Inquirer
The Philadelphia Inquirer front page for Monday, May 4, 2020.