From Newport Mayor Dean Sawyer:
Sunday afternoon, I participated in a conference call with coastal mayors and Governor Kate Brown to discuss the COVID-19 emergency. Governor Brown indicated that she was going to issue additional orders to shut down State Park campgrounds and businesses where social distancing is not possible (i.e. Hair parlors, tattoo shops and gyms) but seemed to fall short of issuing bans on the use of other vacation facilities.
The Newport City Council will have an emergency meeting Monday to discuss the COVID-19 emergency and specifically the issue of possibly closing or restricting hotels, motels, short term rentals and campgrounds during this emergency.
The meeting will be conducted as an “e-meeting” and the County is requesting that a joint meeting be conducted over the phone towards the end of the day with all of the City Councils in Lincoln County and the County Commission. Then there will be discussions about what direct actions to take on a County-wide basis. If action is to be taken, it must be done in a consistent manner to reduce confusion.
The North Coast has effectively shut down transit traffic from Tillamook going north. There is concern that the traffic for the Central Coast could see a significant increase because of these actions. The Governor emphasized that businesses that cannot follow social distancing guidelines will be ordered closed. Grocery stores and restaurants will be able to operate, but several restaurants are completely closing while other stores are simply reducing their hours.
Personal Protective Equipment, or PPE’s, are being donated to hospitals from private businesses. I noticed Harbor Freight will be donating their entire stock of N95 masks and medical gloves to hospitals in a number of cities.
There is no travel ban so if you need to travel to the valley for medical services you can do that. The Governor will be upping her messaging on a “Stay Home Stay Healthy” order and from what I see, local folks are doing a great job following her common sense guidelines.
The Governor has ordered the closure of State Parks starting Monday. She has also placed a ban on residential evictions for the next 90 days. Again you may go to the store, to restaurants for take-out – visit those who are shut ins and other businesses that you need to transact with, that are still open.
Rain is forecast for the rest of the week so we expect that what we saw Saturday will not be repeated.
Please consider purchasing gift cards from our local businesses that you can use later when things ease up. Please check on any and all of our vulnerable neighbors such as the elderly and disabled – and volunteer to get supplies delivered to them as well as practicing “social distancing.”
We are in uncharted waters . But I believe our great town will get through this.
Mayor Dean Sawyer,