Covington Council.jpg

The Covington City Council meets together during the first of two emergency council meetings last week. Left to right are council members Susie Keck, Kenneth Morgan, Fleeta Baggett, Mayor Steve Horton, City Manager Scott Andrews, and council members Don Floyd and Anthony Henderson. Council member Hawnethia Williams was absent due to recovering from surgery.

COVINGTON - The Covington City Council will hold an emergency council meeting tonight, March 23, at 7 p.m. for "potential changes to emergency protocol" related to the COVID-19 crisis.

The council held two emergency council meetings last week to enact a resolution calling for a voluntary curfew from 9 p.m. to voluntary curfew from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. from March 20 to April 7, voluntary shelter in place, and prohibiting gatherings of more than 10 people during the local state of emergency related to COVID-19.

The council approved the resolution establishing the curfew, shelter in place, and gathering prohibitions at their first emergency meeting on March 19.

The resolution also allows restaurants selling beer or wine for on-premise consumption to sell it for take out, and delays the due date for payment of alcohol excise taxes for restaurants until June 30.

They held a second emergency meeting on March 20 to clarify the resolution related to the prohibition on gatherings. The unanimous vote at the second meeting limits all public assemblages, events or gatherings of 10 or more people at all restaurants, coffee shops, bars, night clubs, gyms, trampoline parks, and private social clubs during the hours of the curfew. Emoloyees of those businesses are not counted under the resolution. It also allowed a restaurant to have more than 10 customers if those customers are in separate rooms.

The resolution does not affect religious institutions or grocery stores, or cafeterias and restaurants within any hospital or healthcare facility.

Mayor Steve Horton said at the March 19 meeting that the city wants to encourage people to voluntarily follow the order, but understand that if the situation gets worse or people aren't obeying the curfew, that the city council could make it mandatory.

Due to circumstances necessitated by emergency conditions involving public safety and preservation of public services, public access to the March 23 meeting is limited to teleconference and video access. The public may access the meeting by calling 1-929-205-6099 (New York), Meeting ID: 813 344 163.

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Senior Reporter

Born and raised in Decatur, Ga. Graduated from Shorter College in Rome, Ga. in 1979 with B.A. in Communications. Worked in community newspapers for 26 years. Started at Rockdale Citizen/Newton Citizen in January 2016.

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