GROVE - The City Council of Grove has approved a new city ordinance pertaining to contagious diseases in the wake of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

On Tuesday, March 24, the City Council met to discuss taking actions to prevent the communal spreading of the virus, by passing a city ordinance and a resolution.

City Ordinance

The city ordinance has four sections outlining the limitations and actions to be hereby enacted as law.

Section one: the city may enact ordinances, rules and regulations deemed necessary for the protection of public health; the city may establish and regulate hospitals, provide for the hospitals operation and support; the city may make regulations preventing the spread of contagious diseases and may enforce quarantine up to five miles from city limits, excluding other community boundaries.

Section two: the city has adopted, ratified and incorporated the emergency powers pertaining to the prevention of contagious diseases. Enforcement of the rules, regulations, proclamation and resolutions authorized carries the full weight of the City of Grove law within five miles of city limits, excluding other community boundaries.

Section three: violators will be fined up to $250.00 on the first offense and up to $500.00 and up to 60 days in jail.

Section four: if any section, paragraph, cause or phrase is declared invalid or unconstitutional, the rest of the ordinance is not affected.

This ordinance went into effect on Wednesday, March 25, 2020.

Resolution

The resolution has two sections, the second with nine subsections.

Section one: There is a state of emergency within the city limits of Grove and the city will implement the following procedures.

Section two: The resolution will become active on 12:01 a.m. on March 26, 2020. This replaces the previous state of emergency on March 17.

Sections two subsections:

1) The Civic Center, Community Center, Senior Citizen Center and Public Library are closed to the public. All public parks are closed. All Municipal Court dates are suspended. Meetings of the Convention and Tourism Bureau and the Planning and Zoning Committee are cancelled. Organized events at the Grove Sports and Recreational Complex and at Wolf Creek Park are cancelled. All permits for events, public or private, held on city street, sidewalk, facility, park or property are revoked and no further permits will be issued.

2) The City of Grove's Administrative, Public Works and Public Safety facilities are closed to the general public. Administrative and emergency personnel will be available to answer phones and will conduct essential business during business hours. Utilities may be paid by mail, phone, automatic withdrawal, online (www.cityofgroveok.gov), the drive-thru (during business hours) or the dropbox. Grove Municipal Services Authority (GMSA) may be able to delay disconnection and/or waive late fees for those who are having trouble paying because of the loss of income due to COVID-19.

3) Organized gatherings of ten or more people, excluding political subdivisions or state entities over which the City of Grove has no control over, are prohibited.

4) Places of public accommodation are hereby closed to the public, including gyms, fitness facilities, spas, hair salons, entertainment venues, recreation centers, sport facilities, movie theaters, performance venues, museums, bowling alleys, skating rinks, private clubs, tattoo parlors, taverns or bars within the city limits of Grove. These restrictions do not apply to places that supply food or beverages not for on-premise consumption, such as grocery stores, pharmacies and food pantries, nor to healthcare facilities, childcare facilities and residential care facilities.

5) Restaurants, dining rooms, cafes, coffeehouses and other places of public accommodation that offer food or beverages are closed to the public through the duration of the resolution, although curbside pick-up, take out, drive-thrus and delivery services may remain open to the public and are encouraged until the expiration of the resolution. This does not apply to schools or in-house cafeterias that serve residents and employees such as childcare facilities, hospitals, long-term facilities, crisis shelters or similar institutions.

6) The City Manager and Department Heads are authorized to make necessary operational changes to protect both employees and the public from COVID-19.

7) This resolution is in effect until Tuesday, April 7, 2020. On that day the City Council will meet to extend or revise as deemed necessary for the health and safety for the citizens of Grove.

8) The City Manager is authorized to make emergency purchases of goods and services and enter into contracts deemed necessary to protect the health, safety and welfare and to protect public or private property from further harm or damage. The City Manager may enter into a contract without the approval of the City Council.

9) This is in effect for up to three miles outside city limits, excluding community boundaries.

For more information on COVID-19 in the State of Oklahoma, visit www.coronavirus.health.ok.gov.

What is an essential business?

According to the Delaware County Health Department these are the essential vs. non-essential businesses. For a more detailed list, please visit www.cisa.gov and search 'guidance on the essential critical infrastructure workforce'.

Essential Businesses

• Supermarkets and Grocery Stores

• Pharmacies

• Convenience Stores

• Gas Stations

• Restaurants (carryout, pick-up or drive-thru only)

• Banks

• Law Enforcement/First Repsonders

• Hospitals

• Public Health Agencies

• Post Offices

• Government Offices

• Hardware Stores

Non-Essential Businesses

• Gyms

• Bars

• Movie Theaters

• Museums

• Concert Halls

• Hair and Nail Salons

• Places of Social Gatherings

• Churches

• Retail