The below link to a front-page article in the Sunday, March 29th edition of the Atlanta Journal Constitution summarizes eloquently what a difference just 3 weeks can make in the lives of the people of Cobb County.
Read full article here.

On Tuesday, March 24th, when I signed the Declaration of Emergency, that required sheltering in place, the County had approximately 80 cases of virus. Tonight, as I type this update, we have 228 with 9 deaths. The reality is that these are only the cases of which we know because (1) we don’t have enough kits to test the whole County (2) it’s taking 5-10 days for the results to be reported, (3) there are people who are carrying the virus but don’t have any symptoms and (4) there are those who have the symptoms and are isolating themselves and we don’t know who they are.

We are moving inexorably to a point in which the capacity of our County health care system may be jeopardized. It is the responsibility of elected officials to take all the measures necessary to preserve the responsiveness of that heath care system. While I understand the desire to “get some fresh air”, the acts of civil disobedience by many who are using the closed parks, especially the Silver Comet Trail, to do so are only creating the conditions for a long-term recovery from this pandemic. Staying home and other measures of social distancing will work but only when everyone finally starts realizing that the virus has the initiative, is gaining momentum, and doesn’t play favorites, young or old. Whether it takes one month, two months, or more to defeat this pandemic is in the hands of the people.
Mike

All

In the interest of keeping you informed on a timely basis, the below is cut and pasted from the Cobb County web site with some minor revisions:

“Cobb County will transition to a limited operational status Wednesday, March 18, that will mean many publicly-accessible buildings will be closed, except for essential employees. County services will continue and public safety will remain fully staffed.

“We need to follow the latest public health guidelines and advice on how to slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus,” Deputy County Manager Dr. Jackie McMorris said. “This action will help protect both the public and our employees by limiting the number of people in buildings and public spaces.”

The change in operational status will begin at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, March 18, and will remain in effect until the county manager deems it safe to end. Department managers will determine which employees are essential and which employees can work remotely. The Cobb County Board of Commissioners approved policy revisions today that will ensure payment to those employees during this time, including those sent home to telework.

During a special-called Board of Commissioners meeting Monday, Commission Chairman Mike Boyce canceled Tuesday’s zoning hearing saying holding a meeting with a large group of people would send the wrong message.” Next Tuesday’s Board meeting on 224 March has also been cancelled. Below is the link to the video that summarizes the Board’s actions on Monday and some other thoughts

“Some highlights of the status change include:

  • Most public lobbies will close, and departments that take payments from the public will make arrangements to accept those payments by other methods.
  • Lobbies that must stay open will limit access to indoor spaces and require a six-foot buffer between employees and other patrons.
  • Libraries, senior centers and recreational facilities will remain closed throughout this period. Outdoor parks will remain accessible and any restroom facilities at those parks will undergo cleaning at regular intervals.
  • Cobb County’s administration building at 100 Cherokee St. will be closed to the public with access by essential employees only.
  • Cobb County courthouses will remain open to handle essential matters to ensure due process and to protect our community.

For more information on Cobb’s COVID-19 response, visit here.”

By now many of you may feel saturated with the coverage about COVID 19. I’ll simply say that the best source of information continues to be the Center for Disease Control.

Although I am obviously biased, the most current information is the Cobb County web site.

There are still many passengers from the cruise ship at Dobbins Air Reserve Base. If you have questions about them, please go to:

media@hhs.gov

I was at Dobbins Sunday afternoon helping members of the Chamber of Commerce unload food supplies for the cruise ship passengers. Congressman Loudermilk arrived at the same time on a fact-finding mission about the status of the passengers.

I am not canvassing further until I see what impact the widespread measures are having on controlling the spread of the virus. It was a difficult decision since this effort has given me an opportunity to talk to people across the County. But leadership starts at the top, and I have to set the example, particularly as the Chairman.

In the meantime: (1) if you are sick stay home; call your health care provider before you go to them since such an action may spread the virus (2) wash your hands regularly and for 20 seconds (3) sneeze into tissue, discard the tissue, and then wash your hands (4) maintain social distancing (5) gather your information from credible government and medical web sites. We are entering a new normal for an unknown period. It may be a era when we have more time with our families and hobbies. For those who believe in a higher power, this is certainly time for prayer or other quiet periods of mediation or reflection. I am confident that we shall emerge from this challenge because I am already seeing the resilience of people as they reorganize their lives sensibly and confidently to confront the unknown.