COVID-19 Coronavirus Information
***Ramsey County COVID-19 Resources and Assistance (PDF) in multiple languages format.
November 23, 2020—Free COVID-19 Exposure Notification App Released by the State
Governor Tim Walz announced a new tool in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic at a press conference on Monday, November 23—a Bluetooth-enabled mobile app called COVIDaware MN. The COVIDaware MN app seeks to slow the spread of COVID-19 by notifying more Minnesotans—more rapidly—of possible exposures to COVID-19, so they can take action to protect their communities.
Minnesota is the 17th state to formally launch an exposure notification app, which has proven effective in reducing the spread of COVID-19 in other states.
The app notifies you if you’ve been near someone who tested positive for COVID-19; and if you test positive, you can use the app to anonymously notify anyone you’ve been near. The app is free and does not collect any personal information or track your location.
How it works
When you choose to use the completely voluntary COVIDaware MN app, it will anonymously notify you when you have been exposed to COVID-19. If you opt in to the notification system, the app creates anonymous keys unique to your phone that change every 10 to 20 minutes.
The app—without collecting, sharing, or using any identifiable information or location data—uses Bluetooth Low Energy technology to exchange privacy-protected keys between you and other users that you come into contact with. The app then cross-references the keys exchanged with your device with a list of the anonymous keys that reported a positive COVID-19 test.
If there is a match, the app notifies you of the possible exposure and provides instructions from the Minnesota Department of Health about what you should do to keep yourself and people around you safe.
Privacy and availability
The app is opt-in only, and you must explicitly choose to download the app and turn on notifications, which you can also turn off at any time. The system does not collect any device location data or user identity information. Users make the decision to anonymously report a positive diagnosis to the app.
The app uses technology developed by Google and Apple, and those companies will disable the exposure notification system on a regional basis when it is no longer needed. The free app is available for download from the iPhone App Store and the Android Google Play Store.
For more information about how the app works, visit covidawaremn.com.
Update: On November 18, 2020 Governor Walz announced broader COVID-19 restrictions:
In response to growing COVID-19 case counts in Minnesota, Governor Tim Walz imposed added restrictions pausing in-person dining and shutting down bars, fitness centers, and amateur sports statewide for four weeks. Social gatherings are limited to members of the same household. Take-out and delivery of food and beverage is still allowed, hair and personal care salons can stay open, and church services will not be effected by the new restrictions. The closures begin Friday, November 20 at 11:59 p.m. and will expire Friday, December 18. For the full executive order and more information, click here.
- All in-person dining—both indoor and outdoor
- All social gatherings with individuals outside your household
- Organized sports—youth and adult
- Gyms/fitness centers—including yoga, martial arts, dance studios
- Recreation centers/public pools
- Indoor entertainment venues such as bowling alleys, movie theaters, museums, and arcades
- Weddings receptions/private parties
What’s Not Affected:
- Grocery stores and other retail establishments
- College and professional sports
- Barber shops, hair salons, and other personal care services
- Religious services, as well as weddings and funerals, will be allowed to continue, but no social receptions, parties or other post-event gatherings will be allowed.
- Non-life-saving surgeries, eye exams, and dental visits will still be allowed.
- Child care and daycare
- Local school districts decide whether to have students in school or not, with the state providing suggestions based on cases in the community.
On July 22, 2020 Governor Walz signed an executive order that requires Minnesotans to wear a face covering (mask) in indoor businesses and indoor public settings, as well as other settings. If you have concerns about a violation of the Governor’s order at a local business, please review the guidance referenced under Enforcement and Where to Report Concerns with Compliance or Ask Questions for both residents and businesses. See Minnesota Department of Health FAQ web page for additional information.
COVID-19 Testing Sites
Community testing sites/events are offered by Saint Paul – Ramsey County Public Health in partnership with local community organizations to provide safe and free COVID-19 testing. More information can be found on the County's Website.
The state's saliva testing program has been expanded to include a location in Brooklyn Park beginning October 20. The sites offer free saliva tests to any Minnesotan who believes they need to be tested, as part of the state’s strategy to provide easy access to quick, reliable testing. For more info, visit https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/testsites/saliva.html
City Hall Closed; Services Continue
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and in an effort to ensure the health and safety of our community members, staff and their families, the City of Arden Hills has closed City Hall and its facilities to the general public. A Local Emergency has been declared for the City of Arden Hills.
City Will Not Offer Fall Parks and Recreations Programs
The City of Arden Hills will not be offering fall recreation programs due to COVID-19. City parks, trails, playgrounds, athletic fields, nature areas, and sport courts remain open and available for use. City staff is exploring options to resume winter recreation programs in January 2021. For a list of alternative activites, click here.
City Council, Committee and Commission Meetings
Notice: Effective April 10, 2020 City Council meetings and Planning Commission meetings will continue as scheduled, but meetings will be held virtually. View the news announcement to learn about how residents can participate.
Based on the March 20, 2020 letter of determination signed by Mayor David Grant, City Councilmembers can attend meetings by telephone or other electronic means. Other Committees and Commissions will be held on a case-by-case basis. Please visit the website for updated scheduling.
Non-Essential Meetings, Events, Programs Cancelled
All non-essential meetings, events and recreation programs are cancelled until further notice.
Services Continue; Contact City Staff
City services will continue without interruption, but new procedures are in place for obtaining building permits and inspections, accessing Parks and Recreation programs and use of city parks, recycling and yard waste and more. See City Services and Department Updates.
Staff will be available by phone or e-mail during regular business hours, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. If you need assistance, please call 651-792-7800, or access the staff directory. For sewer and water problems after hours, call 651-767-0640.
Payments, correspondence, permit applications, and more can be submitted online or left outside City Hall in marked bins. The US Mail bin is used by the mail carrier. Use the locked drop box for utility bill payments (checked daily by staff). There is a larger bin to drop off plan sets for permits.
Council Approves Temporary Flexibility for Businesses
On May 26, 2020 the Arden Hills City Council approved Resolution 2020-024 providing for temporary flexibility within the City Code for businesses to continue operations consistent with the Governor’s Executive Orders. The resolution was adopted in response to Phase II of Governor Tim Walz’s Stay Safe MN plan announced Wednesday, May 20 and is designed to further aid in the support and recovery of local businesses. Any temporary flexibility requested by local businesses must be reviewed and approved by City Staff, for further information or to request an application please contact City Staff at (651) 792-7800.
Governor Walz Signs Stay Safe MN Order
Governor Walz put in place a Stay Safe MN order, effective May 18, that encourages Minnesotans to stay close to home but allows for gatherings of friends and family of 10 people or less and the opening of retail stores and other main street businesses that have a social distancing plan and operate at 50 percent occupancy. Additional guidance for businesses, including a template plan and checklist, is available on DEED’s website at mn.gov/deed/safework.
Update: On June 10, 2020, phase 3 of Stay Safe MN kicks in. See what it means for businesses and Minnesotans.
Steps to Take
- Call your doctor: If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider for medical advice.
- Stay home if you are sick or have been exposed to someone who is sick
- Wash your hands with hot soapy water for 20 seconds before, during and after visiting our facilities
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, or do so into your elbow
- Avoid touching your mouth, nose and eyes
- Reduce activities
- Practice social distancing measures
- People who are 65 and older, or people of any age who have underlying medical conditions, should stay at home and avoid gatherings or other situations of potential exposures, including travel.
- The CDC recommends the use of cloth face coverings.
- Minnesota Department of Health use of face masks.
Local, state and national resources and business resources for information on Centers for Disease Control, MN Department of Health, Ramsey County, MN Department of Employment and Economic Development, how to contact your local legislator, Governor’s Office Executive Orders, food shelves, unemployment assistance, business loans and more.
Sign up for Alerts
To receive COVID-19 email or text updates from the city, visit Notify Me and then scroll the Alert Center and City News to sign up for the latest announcements.
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