Marshfield officials take precautions for future health threat
For the Hub City Times
MARSHFIELD – Marshfield officials are once again putting their pandemic-related game plan together, should COVID-19 force more shutdowns this fall.
The common council voted 10-0 on Aug. 10 in favor of giving Marshfield City Administrator Steve Barg authorization to take emergency actions necessary to protect the health and safety of city employees and residents, by restricting access to city hall and other facilities and reinstating the use of remote meetings, if necessary.
“The number of cases of COVID-19 is rising. Wood County is showing higher transmission levels happening right here,” Barg said.
“The reality is though there is nothing that has come down from the state; there is no mandate from the governor’s office, as there was once, to take any type of action. So, it is entirely in our control.
“And, I am not suggesting that there is anything imminent on my mind in terms of taking some actions, but I think it is prudent as we look at the Delta variant, as we look at cases growing, and what may happen this fall, that someone be empowered to make those decisions and take actions on the spur of the moment, if they are deemed necessary to protect public health and safety.”
Alderman Tom Witzel made it clear there is no imminent threat, and there are no plans to shut things down any time soon.
“This is simply a tool in place, should some future action down the road at some point be deemed appropriate,” he said. “I want to make sure that the public knows that we are not closing city hall, we are not requiring masks; we are simply having a tool in place.”
Barg said he would continue to monitor the local situation to see if any emergency actions are warranted.
The council added a stipulation restricting the city administrator from imposing mandatory vaccinations for city employees.