Good afternoon Ball Ground.
I wanted to share some comments from Mayor Roberts, at his request, concerning the ongoing Covid-19 threat to our community and state.
Hello Ball Ground Friends.
Governor Kemp joined our weekly conference call with mayors across the State that we have with Dr Toomey, head of the Georgia Department of Health. As our numbers continue to spike our leaders at the State level are beginning to push more heavily for strict enforcement of the Governor’s Executive Orders at the local level. Most critical among these mandates are the social distancing, and the expectation that our food service professionals who come in contact with the public wear masks. So as we understand the orders, a cook at the grill need not wear a mask (by mandate), a cashier behind a plexiglass shield need not wear a mask (by mandate), but the server taking your order or bringing your food/beverage must wear a mask by order of the Governor although the mask can be removed if the server is not waiting on a customer. People who do not reside in the same household are mandated, by Executive Order, to maintain a distance of 6 feet from each other inside and outside. So if you can reach out and physically touch someone you don’t live with, you are way too close.
Governor Kemp was emphatic that before implementing more mandates, that he concedes will end up in court with judges and lawyers intervening, that we all do everything in our power to increase awareness, promote the wearing of masks, and to begin more aggressive enforcement of his existing orders.
The issue is that as a local government, we really don’t want to be in the business of trying to enforce the Governor’s orders. Local enforcement of the Governor’s order is questionable except by the Georgia State Patrol. But for now, we are simply asking for and appreciate the cooperation of our city customers, our residents, our businesses and our visitors to do the right thing for the benefit of both yourself and others by following the 3 W’s. Wash Your Hands, Wear your mask and Watch your distance.
The Governor in his comments noted that enforcement can be a political challenge at the local level, especially in small communities where we more likely know each other, and stated he would make the Georgia State Patrol (GSP) more available for local enforcement in these situations. But we would much rather see our community follow the mandates currently in place…..pertaining to wearing masks, maintaining mandated social distancing both inside and outside, and frequent sanitizing….than to have the GSP involved in compliance within our city.
On behalf of the City, I wanted to share with you some highlights of the Governors discussion with city officials and to thank you for helping to comply with measures to slow the spread of the virus which still has no vaccine.
At this time we have cancelled the remainder of our summer concert series as well as our “Music on Main” Saturday performances as we are not looking to consolidate any groups of people. We are exploring the ability to place speakers on our downtown lamp posts and stream music that way to provide some background music and add to the already pleasant downtown atmosphere. We are working to determine if we can accomplish this using the funds we had set aside for live performances/bands in City Park.