GOLIAD – Any event with 10 or more people attending within the city limits of Goliad is cancelled through April 30 because of the coronavirus or COVID-19.
This includes the city’s and Main Street’s Easter egg hunt and the style show. The spring style show will be moved to the fall this year.
“I cannot see it being worth bringing in all these people,” said Keli Miller, Main Street director, during the council’s Monday, March 16, meeting. “I don’t see it being worth it.
“We can do the style show in the fall, which we have done before.”
Likewise, the city council approved a limit to all public gatherings of no more than 10 people.
“I do want to stay along the lines of the 10 in a group,” said Mayor Trudia Preston. “I mean, I think that’s a necessity and limit if you have a party at the park or gathering out on the front porch somewhere.”
With the council’s vote, this also means that Relay For Life, which was planned for downtown, is cancelled.
City work continues
The city, though, is not shutting down.
“I think we need to keep the city up and running for sure,” said Robin Alaniz. “I don’t see any reason to shut down.”
There was concern for the city employees working with the public in city hall.
“Today, I brought gloves and masks in that I had at home for the girls up front to use if they wanted to,” said Mary Burns, alderwoman. “We do know the virus stays alive on surfaces. That could be on the bills and cash that comes in.”
While the hope was to eliminate as much contact as possible, it would be nearly impossible to stop all interaction with the public by city hall workers.
“City Hall has always been open — if you have a complaint, come on in,” reminded Kandi Hubert, city secretary.
Residents are being encouraged though to call the city with their questions or concerns instead of showing up in person.
“I’m trying to eliminate face-to-face contact in any way, shape or form and a phone is great tool,” said Burns.
For residents unable to pay their bills because of loss of jobs and pay, the city is offering some leniency, too.
Following the example given by the city of Kenedy, council has extended the time to make payments until April 13 avoiding disconnects and lay fees. Discussions indicated that this, too, could be extended depending on the circumstances and severity of the coronavirus.
Meetings are also being limited with the use of cameras, phones and microphones in line with the recent open meeting requirements changes during this designated disaster time.
“I know, I have more than 10 coming to my Economic Development Corporation meeting,” said Preston. “I know that there is a group coming to the planning and zoning meeting. Do we just cancel those?”
No final decision was made that evening concerning how these meetings would be conducted.
The city’s disaster declaration lasts for seven days ending Wednesday, March 25. The council would then have the option to extend it to a length of time of their choosing.
Jason Collins is the editor at the Goliad Advance-Guard and can be reached at 361-343-5221, or at editor@mySouTex.com.