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Groups Of More Than 50 People Are Banned In Greene County For At Least 30 Days

Chloe O'Neill

No one is allowed to hold events with more than 50 people in Greene County for at least the next 30 days.  The Greene County Commission held an emergency session Monday to vote on a Declaration of State of Emergency due to Coronavirus.  Those in violation of the mandate could face misdemeanor charges.  The decision was made to prevent the spread of the virus, which causes the illness, COVID-19.  Educational institutions, daycare facilities and business operations are exempt. 

The vote came after a third case of COVID-19 was diagnosed in Greene County.

Springfield-Greene County Health Department director, Clay Goddard, told the commission that social distancing limits the spread of a disease and allows those who need medical care to get it.  Without those measures, hospitals can become overwhelmed.  “While (the measures) may seem draconian, they’re effective,” he said.

The decision to limit large gatherings was made after the Centers for Disease Control recommended Sunday that, for the next eight weeks, organizers cancel or postpone in-person events that consist of 50 or more people, with the exception of educational institutions, daycare facilities and business operations.

The commission also voted unanimously to adopt Section 3-14: Pandemic Declaration of the Greene County employee personnel manual. This policy, which is enacted when advised by the Greene County Health Department, is designed to help prepare for a wide range of incidents while protecting employee health and safety and limiting the impact on services provided to Greene County residents, according to county officials.

Commissioners also approved an amendment to Section 3-14 of the Pandemic Declaration policy of the Greene County personnel manual that removes the stipulation that employees provide a physician letter to return to work after five missed absences.

The Commission plans to work with the local health department to determine if any updates to Monday’s order will be needed in the coming days.