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Seeing red about not going green

Union County currently has 62 positive cases of COVID-19, but will not be going green this Friday.

MIFFLINBURG, Pa. — The lunch hour is a busy time of day at Original Italian Pizza in Mifflinburg.

But owner Guiseppe Mazzamuto says when customers are allowed to dine-in, it's a lot busier.

"We lose a lot of business this way. People can't come in, sit down, and enjoy a nice hot meal," Mazzamuto said.

And Mazzamuto still does not know WHEN customers will be allowed to eat inside his restaurant.

Union County has been in the yellow phase of the state's reopening plan since May 8th.

But as surrounding counties are green or are moving to green, Union County is still yellow.

"It's frustrating because we don't necessarily understand why," Rich Schrader said.

Rich Schrader is General Manager at Rusty Rail Brewing Company in Mifflinburg.  

"We want everyone to be safe, but also when we see all these other counties around us, would like to know more about why that isn't happening," Schrader said.

Union County currently has 62 positive cases of COVID-19.

Union County Commissioner Preston Boop told us quote: "We are frustrated and unhappy. No explanation was given. Our numbers are lower than many other counties."

Nearby Northumberland County has 194 cases, while Lycoming County has 164.

Newswatch 16 reached out to the governor's office.

We were told there are three areas that the governor is looking at when reopening counties: decreasing rates of new cases over a seven-day period, decreasing percent of positive cases over a 14-day period, and outbreaks being able to be managed through contact tracing.

That answer is frustrating to business owners in Union County, who are in their 11th week without dine-in customers.

"Not only to us but to all the local businesses in Union County. Everybody needs to live," Mazzamuto said.