LAKELAND, GEORGIA – Have you heard? The City of Lakeland has approved a new Public Health State of Emergency ordinance in response to the President’s and Georgia Governor’s state of emergency declarations.
The key elements of the Lakeland City Council approved EMERGENCY ORDINANCE 3306457, which relates to COVID-19, are:
- closure of City facilities
- closure of restaurants and other eating and dining establishments where food is served must cease offering dine-in services, but may continue preparing and offering food to customers via delivery, drive-through or take-out services
- patrons, employees and contractors of the establishments must maintain at least six (6) feet of personal distance between themselves as much as possible given the physical constraints of the premises
- restaurants licensed to sell beer and wine for on-premises consumption are authorized to sell unopened bottles of beer or wine for take-out consumption off-premises
- gyms and fitness centers shall close
- all public and private gatherings of more than ten (10) people occurring outside a household or living unit are prohibited
- authorizes gathering of individuals for the purposes of carrying on business activity, medical and health services
- curfew is imposed from 9:00 p.m. – 5:00 a.m. which is effective immediately
- individuals exempted from curfew include: fire, law enforcement, medical and hospital services, military services, utility emergency repairs, persons seeking emergency medical or hospital services, individuals traveling to and from their jobs with appropriate identification
- individuals engaged in the delivery of food, medicine, medical supplies, fuel including re-stocking of grocery stores, pharmacies and convenience stores, and news media employees
Violators of the new emergency ordinance will be fined up to $1,000.00 or confined up to 180 days as adjudicated in the Lakeland Municipal Court.
The ordinance will expire on April 22 unless terminated or extended by further action of the City Council of Lakeland. If older ordinances are in conflict with the emergency ordinance, they are suspended until this ordinance expires or is replaced.
The new ordinance goes into effect immediately, despite the expressed concern of councilman Greg Sealey. Mayor Bill Darsey directed the city’s administrative clerk to begin notifying appropriate agencies of the new emergency ordinance.
The creating of an emergency ordinance is provided for in the city’s charter. “Hopefully this order brings some clarity to law enforcement, who are tasked with carrying out the law as well as those expected to adhere to it in light of this national health emergency,” said Darsey
Present via the emergency phone conference today (Monday, March 23) at 10:00 a.m. were Mayor Bill Darsey, City Attorney Tim Tanner, Councilwomen Kellie Mccrae and Grace Mack, and Councilmen Otis Calhoun, Greg Sealy, Tony Giddens and Tim Harrison. The meeting was immediately adjourned after the emergency meeting vote.
To read the entire emergency ordinance, click on the following link: LCN –  Emergency Ordinance – COVID 19