FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
EDIT: The remote emergency meeting called for on 04.14.2020 has been postponed to accommodate a work schedule. It has been moved back to Wednesday, April 15th, 2020 at 5:00 pm.
Osceola, Ark. | 04.13.2020
Special Council Meeting to Consider Curfew
Osceola Mayor Sally Wilson has called for a special meeting of the city council for discussion and consideration of "AN EMERGENCY ORDINANCE CONCERNING THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) PUBLIC HEALTH EMERGENCY". If adopted by the council, the emergency ordinance would establish a temporary, city-wide curfew.
At the advisement of the Arkansas Municipal League, this special meeting will be held remotely on April 14th, 2020 at 5:30 pm utilizing the ZOOM video conferencing technology. For more information or to set-up an account, please visit, Video Conferencing, Web Conferencing, Webinars, Screen Sharing.
The proposed ordinance text for full council consideration follows:
ORDINANCE NO. ___________
AN EMERGENCY ORDINANCE CONCERNING THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) PUBLIC HEALTH EMERGENCY
WHEREAS, the Federal Government has declared a state of emergency based on the impact of Coronavirus (COVID-19) becoming a pandemic event; and
WHEREAS, on March 11, 2020, Asa Hutchinson, Governor of the State of Arkansas, declared a statewide state of emergency in response to Coronavirus (COVID-19); and
WHEREAS, the World Health Organization has declared the Coronavirus (COVID-19) to be a worldwide pandemic; and
WHEREAS, the Coronavirus (COVID-19) has been confirmed to exist in _____________ County, Arkansas; and
WHEREAS, the [City/Town] of _______________ confirms that protecting the public health is the Council’s top priority; and
WHEREAS, the Council is empowered under Arkansas law to do all acts and make all regulations which may be necessary or expedient for the promotion of the safety, health and welfare of the community; and
WHEREAS, the Council, on advice of its local Office of Emergency Management, determines to take action in this emergency circumstance on a continuing basis to address the COVID-19 impacts on our City and community and to further declare a state of emergency in ____________, Arkansas; and
WHEREAS, COVID-19 poses a serious public health risk to our City stemming from it being a novel respiratory disease, impacting our City services, impacting utility department services, impacting our schools, impacting our businesses and impacting our manufacturing and industrial sector; and
WHEREAS, the Council further finds and determines that the adoption of this Ordinance is proper under applicable law.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT ORDAINED by the City Council (the “Council”) of the [City/Town] of ____________, Arkansas (the “City”) as follows:
Section 1. Title. This Ordinance shall be known and may be cited as the “City of ____________ Emergency Coronavirus (COVID-19) Ordinance”.
Section 2. Curfew. A curfew is hereby imposed upon the City from [Ten O’Clock p.m. until 5 O’Clock a.m.], during which it shall be unlawful for any person subject to the curfew to be present or travel upon any public street, public alley, public roadway or public property.
Section 3. Exclusions. The curfew does not apply to the following persons and conduct:
1. A person traveling to and from:
a. work, whether commercial or noncommercial;
b. businesses, both for and not-for profit;
c. government agencies; and
d. any location to receive medical care, food, or any other essential goods and services.
2. A person traveling as the result of, or in response to, an emergency.
3. A person walking their pets.
4. A person acquiring exercise outdoors while maintaining social distance of at least six (6) feet.
Section 4. Penalties. Any violation of this ordinance is punishable by a fine of not less than one hundred dollars ($100) nor more than five hundred dollars ($500) or by imprisonment not exceeding one (1) month, or both.
Section 5. Police Power Finding. The Council hereby finds, determines and declares that this ordinance is necessary and proper to provide for the safety, preserve the health, promote the prosperity and to improve the order, comfort and convenience of the City of ____________ and the inhabitants thereof.
Section 6. Emergency Declaration. The Council hereby finds, determines and declares that an emergency exists, and that this Ordinance is necessary for the immediate preservation of public property, health, peace or safety for the reasons enumerated in the introductory paragraphs of this Ordinance which are incorporated in this Section by reference. The Council hereby determines that the adoption of this Ordinance as an emergency ordinance is in the best interest of the citizens of the City of ____________.
Section 7. Effective Date and Duration. This ordinance shall become effective and enforced immediately upon its adoption and publication as required by law, and shall expire upon declaration by the Mayor that the emergency status has ended or thirty (30) days whichever is earliest.