A Message from the Mayor
CITY ISSUES EMERGENCY DECLARATION/SHELTER IN PLACE
“What the City of Jasper’s stay at home really means”
So, we have 11 pages of legal documents that are difficult for those of us who are not lawyers to read, let alone understand. Let’s break this down.
Most of this is what we “should” have been doing anyway such as stay home, stay away from crowds, stay 6 ft. away from everyone, wash your hands, don’t touch anything you don’t have to, including your face. And when you do touch or handle things, wash your hands. Did I mention using hand sanitizer and/or washing your hands?
What can we do? Lots of things!
· Go for a walk/run/bike/hike with or without your dog
· Go to the grocery store/Walmart/pharmacy/home depot
· Take your pet to the vet
· Take food/care for a relative who is not living with you
· Go to work if you have an essential job
· Go to the gas station/ get your car repaired
· Go to a bank or ATM
· Pick up food from a restaurant that has drive through or takeout
· Go to the laundromat or dry cleaners
· Obtaining supplies you need to work from home
What City Services will continue to operate?
· First, we will ensure our water systems will continue to operate
· Our Police will still patrol our City
· Our Fire Department will be continuously staffed
· City Hall is closed to traffic, but staffed to deliver essential services
· City Trash pickup will continue
What Community Services will continue to operate?
· All Healthcare operations, including doctors and dentists
· Grocery stores, supermarkets, food banks, convenience stores
· Media- newspapers, television, radio
· Businesses that provide food, shelter, social services, and other necessities “for the economically disadvantaged or otherwise needy individuals”
· Hardware stores
· Banks and Credit Unions
· Gas stations, along with auto supply and auto repair services
· Plumbers, electricians, exterminators, and other similar essential service providers
· Post offices and those that provide shipping and mailing services (FedEx, UPS)
· Laundromats and dry cleaners
· Restaurants, but for carry-out and delivery only. (Schools can continue providing food for delivery/take-away. Nursing home and hospital cafeterias will operate as usual.)
· Food and grocery delivery services
· Home-based care
· Residential facilities and shelters for seniors, adults, and children
· Legal, accounting, and other professional services
· Schools and universities are allowed to operate for distance learning and “essential functions”
What Can’t I do?
· Go to the Gym
· Play group sports at the park, have a picnic or other activities that put you in close contact with others.
· Dine in at a restaurant
· Host or attend a party
· Visit others socially
· Go to a bar or club
· Go to a salon
· Get a massage
· Host or attend any public or private gathering
Is this really any different than what I was doing before?
Not really. With so many other businesses, schools, golf courses and restaurants closing voluntarily this just makes it all official and emphasizes our need to socially distance ourselves.
We understand these are trying times. For all of us. But you are not alone. Our City Council voted unanimously to enact this ordinance. Your safety, your family’s safety and our entire cities safety comes first. Please reach out to any of us, Council Members Anne Sneve, Kirk Raffield, John Foust, Dr. Sonny Proctor, Jim Looney, City Manager Brandon Douglas and Mayor Steve Lawrence. If we don’t know the answers, we’ll find them.
This list is intended as a guide and is not intended to be inclusive of every action described in the declaration of emergency resolution related to Covid-19. Please see the complete text for further guidance. Please call City Hall at 706-692-9100 with any specific questions you may have.
Along with community leaders from Gilmer and Pickens, I am listening every morning to the community briefing facilitated by Piedmont Hospital. We have now passed these restrictive regulations, but it is NOT enough. Our limited health resources will surely be overrun if you do not do your part.
Stay home unless necessary. Look out for your neighbors and friends. Call them and make sure they are ok. Check your temperature daily and wash your hands. Repeatedly.
On a personal note, I have been a small business owner for 25 plus years. I have been Mayor for less than 3 months. I have been through both good times and bad times. Having to order businesses to close their doors goes against every instinct I have, even if done for the greater good.
However, as much as I dislike closing businesses, I dislike the thought of watching my friends and neighbors being stricken with this virus even more. As hard as this is, there will be a tomorrow just as there will be other tomorrows and better days. We are Americans. We live in the best city in America! We have been tested before and we will pass this test also.
I look at the youth around us and across our nation. I do not see misguided. I do not see lazy. I do not see disengaged or unconcerned. I see good children raised by loving parents such as you. You have done an excellent job of giving your children the same gifts that we were given; a sense of decency, a feeling of respect for others and a strong belief in themselves. And, although none of us are given to see our future, I believe that we can never go wrong by placing our faith in our Savior and our trust in our children and grandchildren!
Steve Lawrence, Mayor
City of Jasper