Wyoming governor issues statewide closure order

Bay County health officials say six people have been tested for the coronavirus locally. Of...
Bay County health officials say six people have been tested for the coronavirus locally. Of those six tested, four results have come back negative; two test results are still pending. (MGN)(WJHG)
Published: Mar. 19, 2020 at 7:49 PM CDT
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Gov. Mark Gordon has endorsed a decision by the Wyoming State Health Officer to close public places for a two-week period to help slow the community spread of COVID-19.

The closure order extends through April 3 and include schools, theaters, bars, nightclubs, coffee shops, employee cafeterias, self-serve buffets, salads bars, unpackaged self-serve food services, gyms, conference rooms and museums.

Restaurants will be closed to dine-in food service but may remain open for curbside take-out or drive-through food service. Under the order, childcare centers will be closed except for those serving essential personnel.

Wyoming currently has 18 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and the Wyoming Public Health laboratory has completed nearly 300 tests, as of March 19, 2020. Additional testing is occurring at commercial laboratories. A nationwide shortage of testing supplies is impacting Wyoming, like all states. Social distancing measures are the most effective means of slowing the spread of COVID-19, according to Dr. Alexia Harrist, state health officer and state epidemiologist with the Wyoming Department of Health.

In addition, Wyoming Supreme Court issues an emergency order implementing measures to protect the health of the public and court personnel throughout Wyoming. The Wyoming Supreme Court will still permit essential functions to proceed in a timely manner.

The Order advises all District and Circuit Courts to suspend in-person proceedings, except in certain specified circumstances where required by law and the constitution. Judges are encouraged to use video or telephone conferencing to the extent possible, all civil trials should be rescheduled, and reasonable attempts should be made to reschedule all criminal trials, “subject to the requirement that defendants be provided speedy trials as required by law.”

“We are fortunate that our branch has invested in video technology and upgraded our hardware in recent years so that we can perform many judicial functions remotely,” Chief Justice Davis said. He also encouraged individual judges to issue orders specific to their needs as this health situation evolves.