PIMA COUNTY, ARIZONA - The Pima County Board of Supervisors today at an emergency meeting took several actions intended to help get better control of the spread of COVID-19 in Pima County.
The actions include:
Further mandating the wearing of masks throughout the county and asking all County jurisdictions and law enforcement agencies to assist in enforcement. The board included a $50 civil fine for failing to adhere to the mask mandate. The board cited success in reducing cases after the board initially made masks mandatory in Pima County during the month of July.
Revised requirements for restaurants and some public pools to allow only one incidence of failure to follow the protection measures before facing repercussions from the Health Department. These repercussions can include suspension of their operating permit depending on the severity of the infractions.
Imposed COVID Compliance deposit for anyone wishing to hold an event with more than 50 people. The deposit fee starts at $1,000 and increases depending on the size of the proposed event. Organizers would be entitled to receive the full deposit back should the mitigation practices in their event plan be fulfilled.
Mandatory reporting to the health department by businesses of employees who notify them of a positive COVID test. In numerous instances, the Health Department has identified outbreaks at businesses only after completing contact-tracing investigations. This action will allow infectious disease investigators to help businesses earlier in an outbreak in order to provide guidance, education, and support to businesses to better protect their staff and the public.
Endorsed the Health Department’s Public Health Advisory issued Dec. 3, calling for numerous voluntary mitigation measures. The Health Advisory measures include:
Continuing the voluntary 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew, intended to curb evening social gatherings at bars and parties in order to limit and discourage activities where spreading COVID-19 are much higher and where adherence to strategies like wearing masks and keeping physical distance from others is less likely. Outside of their jobs, people are much more likely to be engaging in social, indoor activities and gathering in groups late in the day. The voluntary curfew is focused on reducing these activities in order to limit the spread of the virus.
After two weeks, the board may use the COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents and percent positivity metrics reported weekly by the Health Department to determine if the curfew should be made mandatory going forward.
A Shelter in Place recommendation that asks all County residents to remain at home as much as they can and only venture out for essential travel, such as to their jobs, medical appointments or groceries. People over 65 and who have medical vulnerabilities are strongly encouraged to follow this request.
“My hope is none of these measures taken today will need to be enforced because the people of Pima County, when facing this historic public health crisis, will make the right choice to protect themselves, the elderly, the sick, the vulnerable, their families, their neighbors, their coworkers and their classmates,” said Pima County Board of Supervisors Chairman Ramón Valadez.
“We will get back to living our normal, everyday lives sooner by wearing a mask if you have to go out or if you have family over to your house. Stay distanced from others, avoid gatherings, including gatherings of family. Wash your hands. Let’s stop the spread of this terrible disease.“
The measures adopted today are effective immediately.
More information about these actions is available in the December 4, 2020 Special Meeting Memo to the Board of Supervisors.