Today, the Board of County Commissioners did not extend its current public health order, which includes requirements for physical distancing in public spaces and the wearing of face masks. That order was effective from 12:01 a.m., on Friday, March 26, through 11:59 p.m., on April 30, 2021. Instead, the BOCC authorized a resolution that establishes public health recommendations to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in our county.
“Going forward, the pathway to normalcy is to follow our strong recommendation that everyone who is eligible get vaccinated,” said Chairman Ed Eilert, Johnson County Board of County Commissioners. “There are many opportunities to get vaccinated, and you can contact the Department of Health and Environment if you need assistance.”
The new resolution recommends several actions be taken whenever possible, including getting vaccinated, wearing masks indoors, maintaining 6 feet of physical distance and following guidance and recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, Johnson County Department of Health and Environment and our Local Health Officer, Joseph LeMaster, M.D. The resolution also recommends that businesses and other organizations strongly encourage or require customers and employees to wear masks indoors, maintain 6 feet of physical distance and adopt other strategies to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
When it authorized its current public health order on March 25, the BOCC also approved the establishment of COVID-19 community goals, which, if met, would allow public health mitigation strategies in Johnson County to move from orders and mandates to strong recommendations.
“Current data shows we have made significant progress in meeting the goals our public health experts set last month,” said, Dr. Sanmi Areola, Director of Johnson County Department of Health and Environment. “Due to a data reporting lag and the fact that our data does not capture Johnson County residents who traveled out of state for their vaccination, we believe we have surpassed our primary goal of at least 50% of eligible residents receiving their first dose. We thank the community for all of their efforts to help us control the spread of the virus and appreciate them continuing to do so.”
Resolution 032-32 goes into effect at 12:01 a.m., on Saturday, May 1, and remains in effect until it is amended, revoked or replaced. It is not an order of the Johnson County Local Health Officer, BOCC or Board of Public Health.