IONIA — COVID-19 test results for Ionia County employees came back negative after one employee tested positive for the coronavirus.


Ionia County Administrator Stephanie Fox said she learned an Ionia County employee tested positive for COVID-19 on April 29. That employee was in the Ionia County Courthouse on April 22, Fox said.


In response, 45 Ionia County employees were tested for COVID-19, Fox said. She added that Ionia County did not receive any other positive results from the employees tested.


Ionia County hired Enviro-Master of West Michigan to sanitize all county buildings and vehicles, Fox said. The company was on site on April 29.


County employees chose to return to work, work remotely or decided not to return to work on Monday, May 4, Fox said.


"I’m very thankful for our employees that are working during this pandemic," Fox said.


There was a cost to Ionia County for the cleaning, Fox said, as it has received invoices to date totaling $2,770 to date. The county will receive additional invoices, Fox said. She hopes the county is reimbursed by the Federal Emergency Emergency Management Agency.


All Ionia County buildings and nonessential department services are closed to the public until further notice. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer extended her stay-at-home executive order through Friday, May 15.


As of 4 p.m. Monday, Ionia County had 90 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and two confirmed COVID-related deaths, according to Health Officer Ken Bowen. Ionia County has seen a large number of residents get tested recently, Bowen said, as workplaces around the county are starting to test their employees as more testing is available. Bowen said the increase in testing is leading to an increase in the number of positive cases, and the health department expects this to continue.


If someone in your workplace has tested positive and you have been identified as a contact, the health department will call you, Bowen said.


"ICHD is confident that there is community transmission in Ionia County," Bowen said. "The best protection you have is still to follow the governor’s executive orders and to stay home if you are able to do so."


— Contact reporter Evan Sasiela at esasiela@sentinel-standard.com. Follow him on Twitter @SalsaEvan.