Since the state’s “Stay-at-home” order has been lifted and replaced with a less-restrictive “Stay safe” order that allows for businesses and offices to reopen under certain conditions, the Cambridge City Council approved modifying some of their previous decisions regarding city offices being open to the public.
City Administrator Lynda Woulfe asked the council to allow City Hall to reopen to the public on Tuesday, May 26, which is the day after Memorial Day.
Mayor Jim Godfrey asked if it would be better to wait until June 1 to reopen, which is the day the Isanti County Government Center is set to reopen. Woulfe explained she would rather open on May 26 since the two-week filing period for running for election to the City Council has begun, and she would rather have City Hall open for more than just two days of the filing period.
Woulfe said multiple masks have been given to every staff member to wear. She also said since the plexiglass the council ordered hasn’t arrived yet, they would place tables in front of the main counters in order to maintain proper social distancing.
Public Works Dept
The one exception to the reopening is the Public Works Department, whose gates will remain closed to the public throughout the entire summer.
“Our water and wastewater staff and public works staff are high-need, highly essential,” Woulfe told the council. “As much as we can prevent infection from getting in there, the better off we will be.”
Public Works Director Todd Schwab added they don’t get too many people needing to enter their building, but the ones that do have gotten accustomed to the process for requesting access.
Store manager Bobbi Mix asked the council to allow the store to reopen on Mondays beginning on June 1 and through at least June 30. She said they would still prefer to be closed on Sundays to allow for uninterrupted cleaning of the entire store. The hours will be from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
City council meetings
In part due to half of the council being in the “high-risk” category, the council decided to conduct a hybrid meeting in the month of June. Mayor Godfrey will at least be present in chambers, with the rest of the council given the option to be in person or via zoom.
Citizens will be allowed to attend in person as the Governor’s 10-person limit does not apply to government meetings. However, if six-foot social distancing can’t be maintained, some of the attendees may be asked to view the meeting on the television in the lobby.
Even when the full council resumes meeting in person, the council decided they would still like to have meetings live streamed on Facebook Live.