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Release from Sumter County Emergency Management: Sumter County Curfew

SUMTER COUNTY, GEORGIA – March 21,2020 at 11:00 pm. Sumter County Board of Commissioners and Sumter County Emergency Management Director, issued a county wide mandatory curfew in the wake of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic and under the Authority of the Georgia Emergency Management Act of 1981. This resolution is in effect until terminated by the Sumter County Board of Commissioners and Sumter County Emergency Management Director.

Any violation of this resolution shall be punishable by a fine or a misdemeanor, pursuant to Section 1-11 of the Code of Ordinances of Sumter County. The Sheriff of Sumter County or his lawful deputies, shall be authorized to enforce this Order.

Mandatory Curfew: A mandatory curfew shall be effective between the hours of 9:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. during which all persons within the County shall remain at home.  The curfew shall not apply to anyone performing emergency or first responder services, essential government services, law enforcement services, rescue services, safety services, health services, essential utility services, or military services.  The curfew shall also not apply to anyone traveling to or from or engaging in lawful employment.  The Emergency Management Director may in his reasonable discretion grant further exemptions.

Voluntary Shelter at Home:  The Sumter County Board of Commissioners and Emergency Management Director request that all persons within the County voluntarily shelter at home and not leave their homes or loiter, wander, stroll, or play in any public place within the County, except as follows:

  • When a person is on an errand necessitated due to an emergency;
  • When a person is traveling or returning directly home from lawful employment or otherwise engaged in lawful employment that makes it necessary to leave home;
  • When a person is engaged in interstate and intrastate vehicular travel through the County;
  • When a person is procuring essential food or medicine or seeking essential medical care or providing essential food, medicine, or medical care to another person;
  • Any other activity which may be exempted by the Sumter County Emergency Management Director in his reasonable discretion.

Possible Future Mandatory Shelter at Home Resolution:  The Sumter County Board of Commissioners and the Emergency Management Director may issue a mandatory shelter at home order, with appropriate exemptions, in the near future should it become necessary to protect public health and safety and encourage all citizens and businesses to take immediate action to prepare in advance for such a contingency.

 

Social Distancing: Public or private gatherings of more than ten (10) persons are prohibited anywhere in Sumter County for the duration of this resolution. For the purpose of this order, a “gathering” does not include:

 

  • Office space, public or private schools, child-care facilities, residential buildings, and any type of temporary shelter or housing;
  • Hospitals, pharmacies, physicians’ offices, medical clinics, and other medical facilities;
  • Manufacturing facilities;
  • Grocery stores, shopping centers, and other retail establishments; and
  • Government buildings and facilities.

No worship services shall be held in Sumter County if attended by more than ten (10) persons during the term of this resolution. This directive includes, but is not limited to, church services, funerals, church meals, weeknight services, Bible studies, Sunday schools, choir practices, church meetings, deacons’ meetings, revivals, and any and all other such meetings related to worship or church services. Nothing in this resolution shall prohibit churches from live streaming services or holding services remotely as long as such live streaming or remote services do not result in more than ten (10) persons being present in violation of this resolution.

Indoor recreational facilities, including gyms, physical fitness centers, and dance studios shall be closed for the term of this resolution except where not more than ten (10) persons are present at any one time and each of such persons present has a prior appointment for the use of such facilities at such time.

Pool halls, playgrounds, and theaters shall be closed for the term of this resolution.

 

Resolution is as follows:

RESOLUTION OF THE

BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS OF SUMTER COUNTY, GEORGIA AND

THE SUMTER COUNTY EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT DIRECTOR

FOR THE PROVISION OF EMERGENCY RESPONSES TO

THE COVID-19 CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC

 

 

WHEREAS, on March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 Coronavirus (now designated “COVID-19” or “virus”) as a pandemic and encouraged all countries to take urgent and aggressive action to reduce or stop the rapid spread of such virus; and

 

WHEREAS, on March 13, 2020, the President of the United States of America declared a National Health Emergency regarding COVID-19; and

 

WHEREAS, on March 14, 2020, Governor Brian Kemp of the State of Georgia declared a Public Health State of Emergency regarding COVID-19; and

 

WHEREAS, COVID-19 has caused or contributed to numerous deaths in Dougherty County and other counties throughout the State of Georgia, and numerous persons have been infected with the virus; and

 

WHEREAS, some of those who died from or who have been infected with COVID-19 appear to have been infected by attending public gatherings where other people either carried the virus or were already infected by it; and

 

WHEREAS, numerous individuals have tested positive for COVID-19 in Dougherty County and other nearby counties in the Sumter County area, and numerous individuals are awaiting the results of tests for the virus; and

 

WHEREAS, medical professionals have determined COVID-19 is easily transmitted from person to person; and

 

WHEREAS, Sumter County has numerous recreational facilities, churches, and other common gathering places for Sumter County citizens and visitors to Sumter County; and

 

WHEREAS, health experts have encouraged elderly citizens to remain in their residences, businesses to allow employees to work remotely, when possible, and citizens to maintain a distance of six (6) feet from others, when possible, to avoid gatherings of more than ten (10) persons and to practice social distancing; and

 

WHEREAS, medical professionals have encouraged Sumter County to take aggressive steps to contain the spread of COVID-19; and

 

WHEREAS, Sumter County has an Emergency Management Ordinance codified in Article II of Chapter 30 of the Code of Ordinances of Sumter County; and

 

WHEREAS, the declaration of a state-wide emergency by the Governor has activated the Local Emergency Operations Plan pursuant to Section 30-34(e) of the Sumter County Emergency Management Ordinance; and

 

WHEREAS, the Sumter County Board of Commissioners adopted a Declaration of Local Emergency due to COVID-19 on March 17, 2020; and

 

WHEREAS, the Sumter County Emergency Management Director has requested that the Sumter County Board of Commissioners take action to comply with recommendations from federal and state officials regarding limitations of meetings where groups of people may congregate and spread the virus from person to person; and

 

WHEREAS, both the Board of Commissioners of Sumter County and the Sumter County Emergency Management Director desire to take all actions necessary or appropriate to reduce the possibility of exposure to COVID-19, to control the risk to public health and safety due to COVID-19, to promote the health of the County’s citizens, and to take additional measures to prevent or reduce the likelihood of the spread of the virus; and

 

WHEREAS, the Sumter County Board of Commissioners and the Sumter County Emergency Management Director have determined that it is appropriate to issue this resolution under the authority of Article II of Chapter 30 of the Sumter County Code of Ordinances relating to Emergency Management; and

 

WHEREAS, Section 30-35(a) of the Sumter County Code of Ordinances authorizes the Sumter County Board of Commissioners to implement local emergency measures reasonably necessary to protect life and property; and

 

WHEREAS, Section 30-35(a)(1) of the Sumter County Code of Ordinances authorizes the Sumter County Board of Commissioners to perform and exercise such other functions and duties and to take such emergency actions as may be necessary to promote and secure the safety, protection, and well-being of the inhabitants of the County; and

 

WHEREAS, Section 30-40 of the Sumter County Code of Ordinances authorizes the Sumter County Board of Commissioners and Emergency Management Director to enact curfews and to limit access to any area within the County.

 

NOW, THEREFORE, it is hereby ordered under the Georgia Emergency Management Act of 1981 and Article II of Chapter 30 of the Code of Ordinances of Sumter County relating to Emergency Management and the authority granted to the Board of Commissioners of Sumter County and the Sumter County Emergency Management Director as follows:

 

The provisions of this resolution shall be effective at 12:01 a.m. on March 22, 2020 and shall remain in effect until terminated by resolution of the Sumter County Board of Commissioners and the Emergency Management Director.

 

  1. Limitations on Gatherings. During the public health emergency described above, the following shall apply for the purpose of limiting gatherings and assemblies:

 

  1. Public or private gatherings of more than ten (10) persons are prohibited anywhere in Sumter County for the duration of this resolution. For the purposes of this resolution, a “gathering” is any indoor or outdoor event or assembly, subject to the exceptions and clarifications below, which brings together or is likely to bring together, ten (10) or more persons at the same time in a single room or other single confined or enclosed space, such as an auditorium, stadium (indoor or outdoor), tent, arena, event center, music venue, meeting hall, conference center, large cafeteria, church, or any other confined indoor or confined outdoor space, to include birthday parties, family reunions, baby showers, weddings, and funerals.   For purposes of this subsection, a “gathering” shall not include the following:

 

  • Office space, public or private schools, child-care facilities, residential buildings, and any type of temporary shelter or housing;

 

  • Hospitals, pharmacies, physicians’ offices, medical clinics, and other medical facilities;

 

  • Manufacturing facilities;

 

  • Grocery stores, shopping centers, and other retail establishments; and

 

  • Government buildings and facilities.

 

  1. No worship services shall be held in Sumter County if attended by more than ten (10) persons during the term of this resolution. This directive includes, but is not limited to, church services, funerals, church meals, weeknight services, Bible studies, Sunday schools, choir practices, church meetings, deacons’ meetings, revivals, and any and all other such meetings related to worship or church services. Nothing in this resolution shall prohibit churches from live streaming services or holding services remotely as long as such live streaming or remote services do not result in more than ten (10) persons being present in violation of this resolution.

 

  1. Indoor recreational facilities, including, but not limited to, gyms, physical fitness centers, and dance studios, shall be closed for the term of this resolution except where not more than ten (10) persons are present at any one time and each of such persons present has a prior appointment for the use of such facilities at such time.

 

  1. Pool halls, playgrounds, and theaters shall be closed for the term of this resolution.

 

  1. The Sumter County Emergency Management Director may in his reasonable discretion exempt entities or individuals from any of the provisions of this section.

 

  1. Mandatory Curfew. A mandatory curfew shall be effective between the hours of 9:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. during which all persons within the County shall remain at home.  The curfew shall not apply to anyone performing emergency or first responder services, essential government services, law enforcement services, rescue services, safety services, health services, essential utility services, or military services.  The curfew shall also not apply to anyone traveling to or from or engaging in lawful employment.  The Emergency Management Director may in his reasonable discretion grant further exemptions.

 

  1. Voluntary Shelter at Home. The Sumter County Board of Commissioners and Emergency Management Director request that all persons within the County voluntarily shelter at home and not leave their homes or loiter, wander, stroll, or play in any public place within the County, except as follows:

 

  1. When a person is on an errand necessitated due to an emergency;
  2. When a person is traveling or returning directly home from lawful employment or otherwise engaged in lawful employment that makes it necessary to leave home;
  3. When a person is engaged in interstate and intrastate vehicular travel through the County;
  4. When a person is procuring essential food or medicine or seeking essential medical care or providing essential food, medicine, or medical care to another person;
  5. Any other activity which may be exempted by the Sumter County Emergency Management Director in his reasonable discretion.

 

  1. Any violation of this resolution shall be a misdemeanor punishable pursuant to Section 1-11 and Section 30-44 of the Code of Ordinances of Sumter County.  The Sheriff of Sumter County and his lawful deputies shall be authorized to enforce this resolution pursuant to said ordinances.

 

  1. This resolution is authorized pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 38-3-28(a) and pursuant to Article II of Chapter 30 of the Code of Ordinances of Sumter County.  This resolution was entered with due consideration of the orders, rules, regulations, actions, recommendations, and requests of federal and state authorities relevant thereto and to the extent permitted by law and shall be interpreted consistent with such orders, rules, regulations, actions, recommendations and requests, all in accord with the provisions of O.C.G.A. § 38-3-28(c).

 

  1. Possible Future Mandatory Shelter at Home Resolution. The Sumter County Board of Commissioners and the Emergency Management Director may issue a mandatory shelter at home order, with appropriate exemptions, in the near future should it become necessary to protect public health and safety and encourage all citizens and businesses to take immediate action to prepare in advance for such a contingency.

 

  1. All resolutions or parts of resolutions in conflict with this resolution are, to the extent of such conflict, hereby repealed and set aside.

 

  1. This resolution shall become effective immediately upon its adoption.

 

SO DECLARED AND RESOLVED this 21st day of March, 2020 at 10:08 o’clock p.m.

 

SUMTER COUNTY BOARD OF

COMMISSIONERS