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St. Petersburg Mayor-elect Ken Welch tests positive for COVID-19, changing inauguration plans

The mayor-elect will be sworn-in virtually and work remotely while in isolation, according to a statement.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — St. Petersburg Mayor-elect Ken Welch tested positive for COVID-19 just days before the official swearing-in ceremony, according to a statement.

As a result of Welch's positive COVID-19 test, the inaugural ceremony scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 6, has been canceled and the mayor-elect will be sworn in virtually.

Welch will "conduct city business remotely while in isolation" for the next five days in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines.

"Let this serve as a reminder to all of us to get vaccinated and follow CDC guidelines to minimize the spread of COVID-19," Welch said in a statement. "While this is disappointing, I am incredibly thankful that my current symptoms are not serious, and I keep in my thoughts and prayers all the families who have lost so much more to this pandemic."

The mayor-elect has been vaccinated and received his booster back in November 2021. He tested positive Monday morning using a home kit, the press release states. Welch took a PCR test later in the day and results also came back positive.

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