-- Indianapolis businesses not following the city’s coronavirus restrictions
will face a greater chance of fines as officials said Tuesday that they will
ramp up enforcement.
officials added 25 more COVID-19 fatalities to Indiana’s death toll as the
state’s average number of newly recorded coronavirus infections continued
its recent growth.
Bars and nightclubs
will remain closed in the state’s largest city as Marion County Health
Department Director Dr. Virginia Caine said those ages 20-29 represent the
fastest-growing age group for new COVID-19 infections during July.
Mayor Joe Hogsett
said several businesses flouted the city’s rules on crowd sizes, distancing
and face masks over the weekend. In one instance, the Indianapolis Speedrome
race track on the city’s east side was issued a $1,000 fine for exceeding
the 25% capacity limit with crowded stands for its Saturday night races.
“The time for
warnings is over,” Hogsett said. “The sight of spectators at a venue packing
the stands without masks is beyond discouraging.”
Face masks have
been required in all indoor public places in Indianapolis since July 9 and
most restaurants are limited to half capacity for diners.
inspectors will begin issuing $1,000 fines against violators, Caine said.
“We take this
seriously. We know that we’ve got to step up our enforcement,” Caine said.
“The education and the warning period is over.”
Gov. Eric Holcomb
issued a statewide face mask mandate that took effect July 27 but has left
enforcement to state and county health departments.
Caine said a new
public health order would allow high school football games to start this
month in Indianapolis, although a maximum 250 people will be allowed in the
stands and all fans will be required to wear masks.
The latest reported
COVID-19 deaths raise to 3,069 the number of people in Indiana who have died
with confirmed or presumed coronavirus infections since mid-March, according
to the state health department. Most of the new fatalities occurred between
Thursday and Monday.
show that Indiana hospitals have been treated more than 900 patients with
the COVID-19 respiratory disease each day since Aug. 2. Indiana’s COVID-19
hospitalizations have grown by more than 50% since late June, while the
seven-day average of newly confirmed coronavirus infections has more than
doubled during that time to the 947 average cases mark set Monday.