(BIVN) – All County employees are to report to work as scheduled, says Mayor Harry Kim, and Big Island restaurants, bars, and places of worship may make their own decision as to whether they stay open or close.
The mayor made the clarification in a Tuesday night audio message distributed under the Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense channel of communication.
Earlier on Tuesday afternoon, Governor David Ige held a press conference to present the State of Hawaiʻi plan to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, called 15 Days to Slow the Spread. In his message, the governor directed residents to “limit social gatherings to groups of 10 people or less to follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines,” to close bars, clubs, theatres, entertainment centers and visitor attractions, and to suspend services and activities in places of worship.
However, the mayor said in his evening message that Hawaiʻi Island “restaurants, bars, and places of worship may make their own decision as to open or close.” He also wants those same places to address how they will minimize the risk to customers.
Here is the full text of Mayor Kim’s message:
This is a Civil Defense Message for Hawaii Island for Tuesday night at 9 O’clock.
Governor Ige announced this afternoon the State’s fifteen day plan addressing the coronavirus issue. For complete coverage of the State’s Plan please visit Hawaii County Civil Defense webpage; click on Civil Defense.
This message is to clarify your Hawaii County Government’s status.
The County of Hawaii will maintain of its services and operations as normal. All County employees are to report to work as scheduled.
The State’s press release on closures for restaurants, bars, and places of worship acted as a guide for all Counties. Within this county the restaurants, bars, and places of worship may make their own decision as to open or close.
If restaurants, bars, and places of worship decide to remain open do address how you will minimize the risk to your customers. This is of assurance of the cleanliness of the facility and of social distancing. If places decide to remain open the County, with its Open Task Force, will be glad to assist any entity with ideas and ways to remain open and keep the community safe. So if you do need help, please call Civil Defense at 935-0031.
Again, all services and operations of the County Government of Hawaii will remain open and all employees are to report to work as scheduled.
Thank you very much for listening. Have a safe night and goodnight to you.
This is your Hawaii County Civil Defense Agency.