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The Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners has canceled its meetings for tonight (Wednesday, January 19th) due to high levels of COVID-19 transmission and exposures in Washtenaw County and across the state. The agenda did not include time-sensitive items. This includes the following meetings:
Working Session Meeting – January 19th @ 5:30 pm
Board of Commissioners Meeting – January 19th @ 7 pm
“Masks, vaccines, and social distancing are all extremely effective ways to protect yourself and others from COVID-19 transmission,” said Sue Shink, Chair of the Board of Commissioners and Commissioner for District 2. “Given the high level of community transmission, it is also important to limit exposures to others whenever possible. We want to make sure we are doing what we can to keep county staff and residents safe while continuing to make progress on addressing issues important to our community.”
Earlier this month, the Board of Commissioners returned to in-person meetings in compliance with state law. This would have been the first week following a new meeting schedule, where the Working Session meeting starts at 5:30 pm and the Board of Commissioners meeting follows at 7 pm, which would have resulted in an extended period of potential exposures for all in attendance.
“COVID continues to stretch healthcare thin: There are blood shortages, staffing issues at area hospitals, and high occupancy rates across the board. This coupled with ongoing cancellation of school makes this decision practical to protect residents and county staff,” said Katie Scott, Commissioner for District 9. “I urge our state lawmakers to pass legislation that will allow us to continue meeting remotely, at least until this current surge wanes. In the meantime, county residents should continue to use high-quality masks and limit social interactions. Consider donating blood if eligible, get a booster shot, and stay safe.”
This decision follows the lead of the State Legislature, which has canceled all its voting for the current week due to a high number of legislators and staff currently testing positive or having been recently exposed.
“As the Commissioners continue to monitor best practices related to their in-person meeting schedule, Washtenaw County government will continue working hard to serve our residents,” said Gregory Dill, Washtenaw County Administrator. “We continue to push out necessary resources and services for the betterment of the community.”
The Board will continue to assess the situation and will plan to resume its regular meeting scheduled on February 2nd. At that time, the Board will read and take action on the items that would have been considered at the canceled meetings.