Regulations to Prevent the Spread of COVID-19


PROCLAMATION ENACTING REGULATIONS TO PROTECT LIFE AND PROPERTY AND TO PREVENT THE SPREAD OF THE NOVEL COVID-19

BY MAYOR SHEA DOBSON

WHEREAS, the Secretary of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) declared a public health emergency on January 31, 2020, under section 319 of the Public Health Service Act in response to COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, on March 13, 2020, the President of the United States declared a national emergency in response to the effects of COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, on March 14, 2020, Governor Tate Reeves signed a State of Emergency in response to the spread of COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, on March 16, 2020 the City of Ocean Springs declared a local state of emergency due to the COVID-19 outbreak; and

WHEREAS, at this time, there are at least 80 reported COVID-19 cases in Mississippi, including one resulting in death; and

WHEREAS, a significant increase in positive cases and additional deaths are expected; and

WHEREAS, on March 20, 2020, the Mississippi Department of Health released a recommendation that all restaurant and bars suspend dine-in service for the foreseeable future in order to help slow the spread of COVID-19, effective immediately; and

WHEREAS, pursuant to Mississippi Code Section 21-19-3 the Mayor is authorized to make regulations to prevent the introduction and spread of contagious or infectious diseases; to make quarantine laws for that purpose, and to enforce the same within five miles of the corporate limits; and to establish pest houses outside the corporate limits, and to provide for the support and government of the same; and

WHEREAS, the Mayor of the City of Ocean Springs hereby proclaims it necessary and in the best interest of the public welfare and safety to impose certain regulations pursuant to Mississippi law for the purposes of protecting life and property, preserving the public order and safety, and limiting and containing the spread of a contagious or infectious disease, specifically COVID-19.

NOW, THEREFORE I, MAYOR SHEA DOBSON, HEREBY PROCLAIMS AS FOLLOWS PURSUANT TO MISS. CODE ANN. § 21-19-3:

SECTION 1: That the following regulations are hereby implemented and adopted, effective 11:59 p.m. CST on March 20, 2020:

a) Indoor dining shall be prohibited at all restaurants, cafés, coffee houses, diners, food stands, and any other building, business, establishment, or place that prepares, sells or distributes prepared food (collectively referred to as “Dining Establishments”). Dining Establishments may only sell or distribute food and beverages by means of carry-out, walk-out, curbside, drive-up, drive-thru and delivery. For any Dining Establishment selling or distributing food and beverages by means of carry-out, no more than five (5) customers shall be allowed in the Dining Establishment at any given time. Dining Establishments are responsible for ensuring compliance with the foregoing limitation.

b) The following buildings, businesses, establishments and places shall be closed: parties, bars, social clubs, night clubs, taverns, lounges, private clubs and indoor and outdoor performance venues.

c) City properties (parks, centers, harbors, and marinas) are closed to gatherings of more than ten (10) people.

d) Social distancing of six (6) feet or more is in effect for all facilities in the City of Ocean Springs, Mississippi.

e) None of the foregoing provisions shall be deemed to restrict or prohibit any person, entity, or business from providing goods and services necessary for the support of Critical Infrastructure. The following sectors constitute Critical Infrastructure: healthcare/public health; law enforcement; public safety and first responders; food and agriculture; energy, including electricity, petroleum, natural gas and propane; water and waste water; transportation and logistics; ports; public works; communications and information technology; critical manufacturing; hazardous materials; and financial services.

SECTION 2: Violations of the foregoing regulations are punishable as allowed by Mississippi law, including a fine not exceeding Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00) or imprisonment not exceeding six (6) months or both.

SECTION 3: The foregoing regulations shall remain in effect until the next regularly scheduled or specially called meeting of the Board of Aldermen of the City of Ocean Springs, Mississippi, wherein same may be ratified, extended, or terminated, if necessary, as provided by law.

/s/ Shea Dobson

MAYOR SHEA DOBSON

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Mailing Address: P.O. Box 1800, Ocean Springs, MS 39566-1800
Delivery Address: 1018 Porter Avenue, Ocean Springs, MS 39564