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December 2020 News Releases

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Employees at City Hall and BPD Receive Positive COVID-19 Results

Two City of Bloomington employees have reported receiving positive results of COVID-19 viral tests over the past 24 hours.  Neither case has been traced to a previously reported case among the City’s workforce.  Details of each case are as follows: 
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Study Shows Wastewater Monitoring to be Valuable Tool in COVID-19 Detection

Results of a monitoring program that has tested Bloomington’s wastewater for COVID-19 since August suggest that the virus can be detected in wastewater one week earlier than a hospital experiences an escalation in cases.   For ten weeks, wastewater professionals from City of Bloomington Utilities (CBU) collected samples three times each week at eight sites across Bloomington, including each of the two wastewater treatment plants.  Testing of those samples was conducted by multiple private, independent laboratories in an effort to gauge viral prevalence in the community.
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City Hall Employee Receives Positive COVID-19 Result

A City of Bloomington employee whose department is located in City Hall, but who works remotely, received a positive result today of a COVID-19 viral test administered Monday, December 28. The employee began experiencing symptoms on Sunday, December 27, and isolated.  No close contacts were identified among co-workers or the general public. 
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Four City of Bloomington Employees Receive Positive COVID-19 Results

Four City of Bloomington employees received positive results of COVID-19 viral tests last week.  Details of each case are as follows:
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City of Bloomington Releases Digital Equity Strategic Plan

The City of Bloomington has published its Digital Equity Strategic Plan in service of the goal of improving internet accessibility and affordability for Bloomington residents. This plan is available at https://bloomington.in.gov/digital-equity.
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12th Bloomington Fire Department Employee Receives Positive COVID-19 Result

A Bloomington Fire Department (BFD) employee received a positive result of a COVID-19 viral test on Thursday, December 17.  The employee began experiencing mild symptoms on Sunday, December 13 during their shift and was sent home to isolate, where they are taking leave to recover. 
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City Partners to Open Southern Knoll Affordable Apartment Community Downtown

The City of Bloomington announces the completion of Southern Knoll, an affordable apartment community in downtown Bloomington serving residents experiencing homelessness and those with intellectual disabilities. Located at 1105-1107 West Third Street in the Prospect Hill neighborhood, Southern Knoll Apartments will include 42 bedrooms in 31 units serving residents at 30 to 80% of Area Median Income (AMI). A portion of the units will be reserved as permanent supportive housing for clients of Beacon and/or Stone Belt.  
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City of Bloomington Awards 2020 Digital Equity Grant Funds

The City of Bloomington Information & Technology Services Department (ITS) announces Digital Equity Grants awards to support Bloomington-based nonprofit organization efforts to bridge the digital divide and increase digital resources for residents.  The grants are funded through Mayor John Hamilton’s Recover Forward initiative to help Bloomington recover from the pandemic and economic collapse, and advance racial, economic, and climate justice. 

City Invites Residents to Apply to Serve on Boards and Commissions

The City of Bloomington’s Office of the City Clerk and the Office of the Mayor are accepting applications from community members who would like to serve on one of the City’s boards or commissions. Some of these bodies are anticipating vacancies as current terms expire in December 2020 and January 2021. Applications are sought to fill spaces on the Commission on Sustainability, the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday Celebration, the Environmental Commission, Parking Commission, and a number of others. 
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Sixth BT Employee Diagnosed With COVID-19

A Bloomington Transit (BT) employee received a positive test result of a COVID-19 viral test on Saturday, December 12.  After first experiencing symptoms Monday, December 7, the employee began isolating on paid leave Tuesday, December 8.  The employee works in the maintenance section of the organization and does not interact with the public in the course of their work.

Indiana Supreme Court Finds For Bloomington in Declaring State Statute Unconstitutional 

This morning, the Indiana Supreme Court decided in favor of the City of Bloomington, declaring a section of the 2017 budget bill that stopped Bloomington’s proposed annexation unconstitutional.  The City of Bloomington had challenged the statute, passed by the state legislature in April 2017, in a declaratory judgment action against Governor Holcomb.  Special Judge Frank Nardi first heard the City’s appeal and on April 18, 2019, also found for the City.  

City of Bloomington Earns Perfect Score on Human Rights Campaign Index for Sixth Consecutive Year

In partnership with the Equality Federation Institute, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) has announced that Bloomington has again been awarded a perfect score on the annual Municipal Equality Index (MEI).
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Public Works/Fleet Division Employee Diagnosed With COVID-19

On Friday, December 11, an employee of the Department of Public Works’ (DPW) Fleet Division received a positive result of a COVID-19 viral test administered on Tuesday, December 8. The DPW employee is the first within that division to have had a positive test result.  Having first experienced symptoms on Saturday, November 28, the employee has been on paid leave since Monday, November 30. 
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City of Bloomington Utilities Accepting Proposals for 2021 Residential Stormwater Grants

The City of Bloomington Utilities Department (CBU) invites homeowners to apply for funding through the third annual Residential Stormwater Grants Program. CBU has allocated $70,000 for the 2021 program to assist owners of single-family residential property with environmentally-friendly drainage projects such as rain gardens, bioswales, and detention pond maintenance.
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CDFI Friendly Bloomington and Bloomington Cooperative Living Team Up to Construct 18 New Affordable Units on Near West Side

Boston-based Local Enterprise Assistance Fund (LEAF) will invest $425,000 to help Bloomington Cooperative Living (BCL) construct 18 new affordable housing units at 921 West 9th Street. In addition, CDFI Friendly Bloomington (CFB) will invest $408,000 and the City of Bloomington’s Housing Development Fund (HDF) will invest $120,000 to support BCL’s renovation of the long-vacant single-family home into a housing cooperative. 
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Four Bloomington Fire Department Employees Diagnosed With COVID-19

Four Bloomington Fire Department (BFD) employees have received positive results of COVID-19 viral tests, and are currently isolating at their respective homes, on paid leave. The employees were not identified as close contacts of one another according to CDC guidelines (having been within six feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes starting from 2 days before illness onset--or, for asymptomatic clients, 2 days prior to positive specimen collection--until the time the patient is isolated.) Today’s announcement brings to nine (9) the total number of positive cases at the BFD since the start of the pandemic; the department’s previous COVID case was reported on Thursday, December 3.  

City Recommends Park Board Approve Update to Special Use Policy

This afternoon, the City’s Parks and Recreation Department, with the support of the administration, will recommend that the City’s Board of Park Commissioners amend the Park and Facility Policy (#13040) to prohibit “camping upon or otherwise inhabiting any property, structure, or facility of the department, at any time without a permit.”  Currently, the policy requires that a special use permit be obtained for certain activities in and uses of the park, including, among other uses, “camping on lands of the department or inhabiting any structure or facility overnight without a permit.”  
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Musical Acts Invited to Apply for Parks and Recreation's 2021 Summer Concert Series

Apply by Jan. 8 for full consideration.
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COVID-19 Case at City of Bloomington Utilities

A City of Bloomington Utilities (CBU) employee received a positive result of a COVID-19 viral test on Wednesday, December 2 after being tested that day.  The employee first experienced symptoms on Monday, November 30, and began quarantining immediately thereafter, per Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) protocols.  The employee, who works at the Monroe Water Treatment Plant, is now isolating at home on paid leave. 
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Bloomington Fire Department Employee Diagnosed With COVID-19

A Bloomington Fire Department (BFD) employee has received a positive result of a COVID-19 viral test. The employee began experiencing mild symptoms on Wednesday, December 2 and received the positive result the same day.  Having last worked Monday November 30, the employee is taking paid leave to recover.  The employee is the fifth member of the BFD to receive a positive COVID-19 viral test result; the BFD’s previous COVID case was reported on October 26.  

City Announces Andrew Cibor to Lead City’s New Engineering Department

Mayor John Hamilton announces the appointment of Andrew Cibor to the position of City of Bloomington Engineer.  Cibor will lead the City’s new Engineering Department, to which transportation and traffic engineering operations currently housed within the Planning and Transportation Department will migrate in January 2021.  Cibor, who previously served as the City’s Transportation and Traffic Engineer, will assume his new position on January 11, and receive an annual salary of $101,418. 
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COVID-19 Case at Bloomington Police Department

A Bloomington Police Department employee received a positive result today (Wednesday, December 2) of a COVID-19 viral test administered Tuesday, December 1. 
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COVID-19 Case at City Hall

A City of Bloomington employee who works at City Hall received a positive result Friday, November 27 of a COVID-19 viral test administered Wednesday, November 25.  The employee last worked in the office Tuesday, November 24, and started experiencing symptoms on Thursday, November 26 while out for the Thanksgiving holiday. 
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Second Black Lives Matter Street Mural Scheduled for Installation in 2021

Painting date for the second mural is tentatively scheduled for Saturday April 17, 2021.