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Posted on: March 24, 2020

Declaration of Local Disaster

EMERGENCY ORDINANCE NO. 2020-3-08

CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF DECATUR, TEXAS

DECLARATION OF LOCAL DISASTER FOR PUBLIC HEALTH

EMERGENCY AND ORDER FOR PREPAREDNESS AND

MITIGATION OF CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19); AND PROVIDING

A PENALTY FOR VIOLATIONS HEREOF

WHEREAS, beginning in December 2019, Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19), has spread

throughout the world and has now been declared a global pandemic by the World Health

Organization; and

WHEREAS, symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, coughing, and shortness of breath, and

in some cases the virus has caused death; and

WHEREAS, the known cases of COVID-19 diagnosed in the State of Texas are currently

increasing daily and the disease is easily transmitted through person to person contact,

especially in group settings, thus, it is essential that the spread of the virus be slowed to

protect members of the public, to protect the ability of public and private health care

providers to handle the influx of new patients and to safeguard public health and safety; and

WHEREAS, Community spread COVID-19 cases have been positively confirmed in

neighboring cities and counties; and

WHEREAS, the Mayor of Decatur serves as the Director of the Office of Emergency

Management, has designated the Decatur Fire Chief, Nate Mara, as the Emergency

Management Coordinator (“Coordinator”) and delegated to the Coordinator the authority

for execution of his duties and responsibilities as set forth in Chapter 2, “Administration” of

Article VII, “Emergency Management”, of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Decatur,

Texas (“Article VII”); and

WHEREAS, the Mayor has determined it necessary to declare a local state of disaster due

to public health emergency, and rather than exercising his authority to issue a declaration

of local disaster for a seven-day period and seek extension or continuation by City Council,

the Mayor has determined it necessary to present this Ordinance to the City Council to

take effect at 11:59 p.m. on March 24, 2020 and to remain in effect until repealed by City

Council; and

WHEREAS, Section 3.07 of the Home Rule Charter of the City provides that a state of

emergency may be declared by vote of the City Council, and that during such state of

emergency, the Mayor, or in his absence or disability, the Mayor Pro Tem shall have all

the powers which would be vested in the Council by state law to the extent he considers

reasonable, or necessary for the protection of persons or property; and

WHEREAS, pursuant to Section 2-297 of Article VII, upon declaration of a crisis, the Mayor

is vested with the full power and authority to provide by Proclamation all regulations 

reasonably necessary to protect the health, security, safety, peace, life and property of the

City and its inhabitants during the time of such crisis; and

WHEREAS, Section 3.07 of the Charter further provides the Mayor, or person authorized

by the Charter to carry out the duties of Mayor, or the Council by a majority vote, shall be

authorized to declare the emergency terminated; and

WHEREAS, Governor Abbott issued Executive Order GA-08 on March 19, 2020 Relating

to COVID-19 Preparedness and Mitigation (“GA-08”) incorporating Guidelines from

President Trump and the United States Centers for Disease Control (“CDC”); and

WHEREAS, because it is imperative that the City take action to slow the spread of COVID-

19, the Council has reviewed current City functions, including the use of City facilities, City

services and operations and public gatherings and has determined it necessary and

appropriate to adopt this Ordinance for the preservation of public health, safety and

welfare.

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