PROCLAMATION DECLARING A LOCAL STATE OF DISASTER
BE IT REMEMBERED: WHEREAS, in December 2019, a novel coronavirus, now designated COVID-19, was detected in Wuhan, China; and
WHEREAS, COVID-19 has now spread throughout the world and been declared a global pandemic by the World Health Organization; and
WHEREAS, symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, cough, and shortness of breath, and outcomes of the virus have ranged from mild to severe illness and in some cases death; and
WHEREAS, the World Health Organization has advised countries to take measures to prevent and contain its spread, including but not limited to, active surveillance, early detection, isolation and case management, and contact tracing; and
WHEREAS, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is closely monitoring the growing number of COVID-19 cases that have spread into the United States; and
WHEREAS, over 3,400 cases of COVID-19 have been reported in the United States, including 68 deaths; and WHEREAS, a private or public gathering of individuals may pose a risk of the spread of infectious disease; and
WHEREAS, unless the actions as hereby provided are immediately initiated, avoidable serious illness and deaths could occur; and
WHEREAS, COVID-19 spreads between people who are in close contact with one another through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes; and
WHEREAS, the continued worldwide spread of COVID-19 presents an imminent threat of widespread illness, which requires emergency action; and
WHEREAS, a declaration of local disaster includes the ability to take measures to reduce the possibility of exposure to disease and mitigate the risk to, and promote the health and safety of, the residents of the City of Heath; and
WHEREAS, the measures identified in this Proclamation are designed to prevent deaths in the City of Heath; and
WHEREAS, the identification of "community spread" cases of COVID-19 in the City of Heath and the region could potentially signal that transmission of the virus may no longer be limited to travel to outbreak areas or contact with travelers who have visited outbreak areas.
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NOW, THEREFORE, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the City of Heath Charter, as the presiding officer of the governing body, the City Council of the City of Heath, a home-rule city, municipal corporation, body politic and political subdivision of the State of Texas situated in Rockwall County, Texas, and pursuant to Section 14B-6 of the City of Heath Code and Section 418.108 of the Texas Government Code (Texas Disaster Act),
BE IT PROCLAIMED BY THE MAYOR OF THE CITY OF HEATH: Section 1. Declaration of Local State of Disaster. A local state of disaster due to this public health emergency is hereby
declared by the Mayor of the City of Heath, pursuant to Section 418.108 of the Texas Disaster Act.
Section 2. Duration of Local State of Disaster. Pursuant to Section 418.108(b) of the Texas Disaster Act, the local state of disaster for public health emergency shall continue for a period of not more than seven (7) days of the date hereof, unless continued or renewed by the consent of the City Council of the City of Heath.
Section 3. Publicity and Filing. Pursuant to Section 418.108(c) of the Texas Disaster Act, this declaration of a local state of disaster due to this public health emergency shall be given prompt and general publicity and shall be filed promptly with the City Secretary.
Section 4. Activation of the City’s Emergency Management Plan. Pursuant to Section 418.108(d) of the Texas Disaster Act, this declaration of a local state of disaster due to this public health emergency activates the City of Heath’s Emergency Management Plan.
Section 5. Temporary Housing and Emergency Shelter. Pursuant to Section 418.020(d) of the Texas Disaster Act, the City of Heath is authorized to: (1) temporarily or permanently acquire by lease, purchase, or other means, sites required for installation of temporary housing units or emergency shelters for disaster victims; and (2) enter into arrangements necessary to prepare or equip the sites to use the housing units or shelters, including arrangements for the purchase of temporary housing units or shelters and the payment of transportation charges.
Section 6. Protective Control Measures and Facilities. Pursuant to Section 122.006 of the Texas Health and Safety Code, the City of Heath is authorized to adopt rules to protect the health of persons in the City of Heath, including quarantine rules to protect its residents against communicable disease and provide for the establishment of quarantine stations, emergency hospitals, and other hospitals.
Section 7. Reporting of COVID-19 Testing. Pursuant to Chapter 14B-7 of the City of Heath Code, the city manager shall establish an order that all public, private, and commercial labs within the City of Heath shall report the number of COVID-19 tests conducted on a daily basis to the City of Heath and establish a penalty for failure to report.
Section 8. Limits on Public and Private Gatherings. This declaration hereby limits the size of gatherings to not more than 10 people, in accordance with federal guidelines, and mandates the cancellation of all such gatherings until further notice. A “gathering” refers generally to a scheduled event or common endeavor where 10 persons are present in a confined space, room, or area, including dine-in service areas. The City Council of the City of Heath and its necessary attendees shall be exempt from this restriction for scheduled public meetings, whether a regular, work session, special or emergency meeting.
Section 9. Enforcement. This declaration hereby authorizes the use of all lawfully available enforcement tools.
Section 9. Effective Date. This Proclamation shall take effect immediately upon its issuance by the Mayor of the City of Heath.