UG Commission to hold special session Thursday on COVID-19 and emergency declaration

The Unified Government Commission will hold a special session at 5 p.m. Thursday, March 19, at the fifth floor meeting room, City Hall, 701 N. 7th St., Kansas City, Kansas.

The commission will decide whether to extend the emergency declaration and may take other action in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the meeting notice.

Afterward, the UG Commission will convene as the Board of Health for an update on COVID-19 and take action as necessary, the meeting notice stated.

The meeting can be seen on UGTV on Spectrum Cable Channel 2, in HD on Google Fiber Channel 141, online at www.wycokck.org, and on YouTube.

The proposed resolution would extend the state of emergency through May 18, 2020. A state of emergency was declared here on March 13. At a recent discussion, Mayor David Alvey said the state of emergency allows the Unified Government to access resources that are needed from the state or federal level.

The UG Commission also will consider an amendment to the UG’s ordinances concerning violation of the orders of the health officer or Board of Health.

The proposed amendment reads, “(a) It shall be unlawful for any person to violate, refuse, or fail to comply with a written order of the Health Officer, Board of Health, or Director of Health issued under their respective authorities. (b) A violation this section is a class C misdemeanor.”

Another resolution on the agenda would authorize the county coroner or the UG administrator to appoint one or more deputy coroners if necessary.

Then, the UG Commission will meet as the Board of Health. During that time, the board will hear an update on COVID-19 by Terrie Garrison, interim director of the UG Health Department.

Also, the Board of Health will consider a resolution to ratify and support the emergency public health orders issued by Dr. Allen Greiner, chief medical officer, on March 16 and March 17. Those orders restricted gatherings to 10 or fewer, and also closed restaurants, bars, taverns, movie theaters and casinos. The establishments could continue providing takeout food, but sit-down dining was eliminated to try to reduce gatherings and the spread of COVID-19.

The agenda is online at https://www.wycokck.org/Clerk/Agendas.aspx.

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