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Pennsylvania working to pave the return of sporting events

Phillie Phanatic

Philadelphia Phillies mascot The Phillie Phanatic in action prior to a baseball game. (AP Photo/Derik Hamilton)

Pennsylvania is working on guidelines to allow sporting events, exhibitions and leagues, both professional and amateur, to get back to “some semblance of normalcy” after practically everything shut down to help stem the spread of the coronavirus, Gov. Tom Wolf said Wednesday.

In a conference call with reporters, Wolf said he has been in touch with major professional organizations including NASCAR, the NFL, NHL, Major League Baseball and others to figure out how they can resume.

He said he expected that his administration will, in the coming days, produce guidelines for the various venues, sports and activities to resume. But, he said, the ultimate success of the events and leagues will rest on whether people feel safe to attend and participate.

“In the end, the ultimate arbiter of our fate here when it comes to sporting events are going to be individuals who want to participate, individuals who want to be part of sports, whether its amateur or professional,” Wolf said. “And we’ve got to make sure that we give them the confidence to then go to these sporting events and feel safe, that they’re not taking their lives or health into their hands.”

Pennsylvania had 815 new positive COVID-19 cases Wednesday, and a 1.2% increase in total cases over the previous day. Over the past seven days, the commonwealth has recorded an increase of 6,025 cases, or 9.5%.

The state has recorded 68,126 positive cases.

Statewide, Pennsylvania had 146 new deaths as of Wednesday, for a total of 4,770. The Department of Health says this is the result of “continued work to reconcile data from various sources,” and that the deaths have occurred “over the past several weeks.”

Philadelphia reported 227 new positives Wednesday. The city has recorded 20,359 cases so far, and 1,152 deaths.

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WHYY’s Ximena Conde contributed to this report.

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