BELOIT (WKOW) -- The city of Beloit is taking extra precautions amid the outbreak of COVID-19.
The new strain of coronavirus causes the disease COVID-19.
The city is discouraging all face-to-face and in person meetings or visits to City Hall and other government buildings. Officials ask that you call the department you need to speak with instead of going into the building.
Grinnell Hall Senior Center will be closed until further notice starting Monday in order to prevent the spread of the virus among the most vulnerable population. Pre-packaged meals will be available at Grinnell Hall for those who sign up through the Rock County nutrition program.
The Beloit Public Library will also close until further notice. All library programming is canceled.
Municipal court will be in session March 19, but officials ask that you contact the court to find out if there are ways you don'thave to appear in person.
The recycling drop-off center is closed until further notice, and all parks and recreation programs have been canceled for March.
Any events or programs through the city with a planned attendance of 50 people or more is canceled.
Absentee voting for the April 7 election is highly encouraged. To register to vote, click here.
Beloit City Council will meet but they will separate chairs to discourage close proximity.
Water Resources has suspended its water meter transmitter replacement project.
Symptoms of the virus include cough, fever and shortness of breath.
In severe cases, pneumonia can develop. Those most at risk include the elderly, people with heart or lung disease as well as anyone at greater risk of infection.
For most, the virus is mild and feels like a common cold.
Anyone who thinks they may have the disease should call ahead to a hospital or clinic before going in for a diagnosis. Doing so gives the staff time to take the proper precautions so the virus does not spread.