Wise County Issues Disaster Declaration

NBC 5 News

On Tuesday, the Wise County Judge J.D. Clark issued a disaster declaration for the county, limiting all gatherings to 10 people or less and closing all non-essential businesses.

Clark defines a gathering as any indoor or outdoor gathering that brings together or is likely to bring together more than 10 people at a time in a single space where people are present and within six feet of one another.

The order goes on to say "this declaration does not prohibit gatherings of people in multiple, separate enclosed spaces (including separate cubicles) in a single building such as different floors of a multi-level office, residential building, or hotel, so long as not more than 10 people are present in any single space at the same time."

The declaration orders all restaurants and beverage bars may only provide take out, delivery or drive-in or drive-thru services.

All bars, lounges, taverns, commercial amusement establishments, bingo halls, theaters, movie theaters, gymnastic studios, martial arts studios, gyms, private clubs, hair and nail salons and barbershops, estheticians and related personal care businesses, spas, massage parlors, tattoo and piercing parlors, tanning salons, residential meeting spaces, event centers, hotel meeting spaces and ballrooms, outdoor plazas and markets, malls and retail stores that do not sell essential household goods all must close.

The declaration allows the following entities to continue doing business as long as they enforce social distancing: grocery stores, stores selling essential household goods, convenience and package stores, pharmacies and drug stores, daycare facilities, medical facilities, non-profit service providers, homeless and emergency shelters, office buildings, essential government buildings, airport and transit facilities, transportation systems, residential buildings and hotels, and manufacturing and distribution facilities.

The executive order will go into effect at 11:59 p.m. on Tuesday, March 24.

You can read the full declaration below.

*Map locations are approximate, central locations for the city and are not meant to indicate where actual infected people live.

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