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Media Contacts: Blount County Government - Amy Cowden, Executive Assistant to the Mayor 865-273-5700
City of Alcoa - Patricia Tipton, Public Information Officer & Special Projects 865-380-4787
City of Maryville - Jane Groff, Community Relations Manager 865-273-3406
Blount County Intergovernmental Public Advisory
Governor’s Order to Stay Home Unless Engaging in Essential Activities
March 30, 2020
Blount County, Tennessee – In response to the Governor’s Executive Order Number 22 issued March 30, local government leaders of Blount County, the cities of Maryville, Alcoa, Friendsville and Townsend, and the towns of Rockford and Louisville are issuing a joint statement supporting the Order.
Local health care leaders are advising that the situation is urgent, and that community members must stay home, away from crowds, and follow the guidelines of the CDC in order to prevent the escalation of the number of COVID-19 cases in our county.
Today the Governor issued a new Order “directing Tennesseans to stay home unless engaging in essential activities to limit their exposure and spread of COVID-19.”
Summary of the Governor’s Executive Order 22
The new Order builds upon the previous orders including no social gatherings of 10 or more people as well as the following provisions regarding restaurants, bars, and similar food and drink establishments:
The Governor also issued an Order expanding Executive Order No. 17 to cover similar services and venues necessary to minimize the continuous spread of COVID-19.
Summary of the Governor’s Executive Order 21
“This is a time to make the right decision for yourself and your family, taking into consideration the recommendations we have all received. The COVID-19 virus will not be going away. We all must shift our way of thinking about how we do business,” said Blount County Mayor Ed Mitchell. “Our country cannot afford to keep our businesses closed but we cannot risk people’s health. It’s a very difficult line to balance and we are all trying to do the right thing,” said Mitchell.
Order No. 22 states, “Because protecting personal liberty is deeply important, this Order is not a shelter-in-place mandate and instead strongly urges Tennesseans to stay at home when at all possible for the protection of themselves and their community; and because with personal liberty comes great personal responsibility, all Tennesseans must do their part by staying at home whenever possible for a limited period of time to avoid exposure to, and slow the spread of, this virus, which will limit the burden on health care resources and allow normal activities to resume sooner.”
Mitchell said, "I strongly urge our business community to strictly adhere to the recommendations we all have received. I know you are making difficult decisions that have a negative impact on your households and on your businesses in order to comply with the Governor’s previous Executive Order 17, Executive Order 21 and Executive Order 22, along with the CDC recommendations. These sacrifices speak to your love for this community and your desire to protect it, and they demonstrate what makes Blount County such a great place to live and work.”
“If your business does not fall into the clear categories as listed in the Governor’s Executive Order 17 and today’s issued Executive Order 21, I urge you to follow your heart on this situation and do what is right for this community,” continued Mitchell. “Alter your business practices as advised to exercise proper social distancing and no social gatherings of more than ten people. Tough decisions are required to ensure the safety and health of our employees, friends, family, and neighbors.
We hope we can look back on this situation and say it brought out the best in all of us.”
The fluid nature of the COVID-19 crisis requires the need to re-evaluate constantly. More information will be available as it progresses. To help keep our community informed, this site has been established for the public to find contact information for local governments, schools and public facilities. News and information will also be distributed through our local media outlets.
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