ENTERPRISE, OREGON – Gov. Kate Brown officially announced Wallowa County can enter Phase 1 of the state’s reopening plan on May 15. The announcement follows nearly two months of a statewide stay-at-home order related to the COVID-19 global pandemic.

In Brown’s letter to Commissioner Susan Roberts, sent at 9:51 p.m. Wednesday, May 13, she said, “Thank you for the effort you, your hospitals and your pubic health experts put into your plan for meeting the prerequisites demonstrating your county’s preparedness for beginning to lift restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

In order to be approved for Phase 1 counties must show a decline in COVID-19 or have fewer than 5 hospitalizations; have sufficient COVID-19 testing and contact tracing capability; establish plans for the isolation and quarantine of new cases; have the hospital capacity to handle any surge in COVID-19 cases; have enough personal protective equipment for health care workers.

Roberts said information received from local businesses helped inform the board of commissioners’ plan submitted to the governor’s office on May 7.

“We appreciate the support of the community and medical professionals in helping devise the county’s plan,” Roberts said. “Individual plans our local businesses submitted were forwarded to the state and helped devise the guidelines for sector guidance.”

Under Phase 1, counties can begin reopening the following sectors under specific safety guidelines – restaurants and bars for sit-down service; personal care and services businesses, including barbers and salons, in-person gatherings of up to 25 people.

To date, the county has had only one confirmed case of the virus.

For more information also see Oregon GOVERNMENT COVID-19 Guidelines to reopen

and visit https://govstatus.egov.com/or-covid-19.

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