The city of Union is taking several precautions to try to minimize the impact of COVID-19, or the coronavirus.
The city announced that City Hall will be closed to walk-in traffic and all business will be done by phone, mail or the drop box on the east side of the building near the parking lot.
People who have business at City Hall can call 686-583-3600.
Union is making accommodations for residents, including not cutting off water service in April, City Administrator Russell Rost said.
“Obviously, we’re going to work with people,” he said.
City Hall, located at 500 E Locust St., will reopen for the 6:30 p.m. planning and zoning commission meeting Monday, March 23. The commission, which usually meets in the first floor board room, will instead meet in the larger auditorium upstairs.
Having the meeting in the auditorium will allow committee members, city staff and the public to better practice social distancing, Rost said.
A couple commission members who are in the high-risk category for COVID-19 might participate by phone.
“We do have some business that needs to be considered,” Rost said.
Items on the agenda for the meeting include a request to maintain an 80-foot antennae and radio tower at Storage Depot, 2070 Old Highway 50 E. Also under consideration is a request for the owner of a salon and spa at 304 Hawthorne Dr. to remodel the upstairs as a living area.
Also considered will be amendments to the city’s parking requirements for existing buildings.
The public can also watch the meeting online at https://zoom.us/j/906888381.
For future meetings, the city is looking at using more teleconferencing but is making sure its plans fit in with open meetings laws, Rost said. He expects that, even if aldermen or committee members are offsite during the meeting, the public will be able to go to city hall to monitor the action on a computer or video screen.
The March and April park advisory board meetings have been canceled. Rost said other meetings could follow.
“If it can be put off, we’re going to put it off,” he said.
Other protective measures include public works employees using separate vehicles.
The city also is having most workers in the same departments alternating days in which they come in to City Hall and work from home. For instance, Rost will come in for a couple days and Assistant City Administrator James Schmieder will work from home and then they will trade off.
Parks, walking paths and park restrooms will remain open. But the city is canceling all park pavilion reservations and postponing all indoor programs and activities until at least May 1.
While the city previously announced the cancelation of its April 4 Kite Fest and April 10 Breakfast with the Easter Bunny, the Easter Bunny event will continue as a “drive-by egg handoff.” Eggs will be handed out from 9-10 a.m. at the Jaycee Pavilion, 611 Jaycee Drive in the fairgrounds. Kids who receive the prize egg can contact the parks department.