March 27 Update from Mayor and Council Regarding Coronavirus

Social Circle Georgia City LogoAs of noon today, there are still no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Walton County. This means that no one who lives in Walton County has tested positive for COVID-19. This does not mean that we are safe from being exposed or that we should be any less careful. Every county bordering Walton County does have confirmed cases. Experts know that people can be contagious even before they start showing symptoms. Please continue follow CDC and Presidential guidelines for safe practices to continue to protect our entire population from the threat.

  • Stay home except for necessary trips.
  • If you or someone in your household are sick, stay home.
  • Practice social distancing when you are out.
  • Practice good hygiene.

We appreciate our residents and businesses for making the best of the situation. Keep posting pictures of your Chalk the City project and the bears you’ve found on the Bear Hunt! See the Downtown Social Circle, Ga Facebook page for details. Look for the Social Circle schools Honk & Wave Parade on April 3 at 5:30 pm. Details and maps on the Social Circle City Schools Facebook page.

Some recent changes to be aware of:

  • Governor Kemp has ordered that schools stay closed until at least April 24. Social Circle City Schools will continue to deliver meals to students, except for the week of spring break (April 6 – 10).
  • All local restaurants have discontinued on-premise dining, including any patio or sidewalk seating, but you can get food to-go. Please call the restaurants about placing to-go orders.

You can follow us for updates on the following social media platforms:

Twitter - @socialcirclegov
Instagram – cityofsocialcircle
Facebook – cityofsocialcirclegeorgia

Please continue to monitor official Local, State, and Federal sources for continuing information, provided below:

City Updates - https://socialcirclega.gov/city-covid-19-resources/
Walton County Updates - https://www.waltoncountyga.gov/
Georgia DPH Updates - https://dph.georgia.gov/novelcoronavirus
CDC Updates – http://coronavirus.gov

March 26 Update from Mayor and Council Regarding Coronavirus

Social Circle Georgia City LogoWe are happy to see all the ways the community is making the best of the current situation while maintaining social distancing. Check out the Bear Hunt organized on Facebook. People have put bears in the windows of their homes and businesses so that parents can drive their children around to look for them. Walton County Chamber has organized “Chalk Your City”. Today they are promoting #ThankfulThursday. See the Downtown Social Circle Facebook page for more details on both these fun activities. The school is planning a “Teacher Parade” through neighborhoods on Friday, April 3. We’ll post more details as it gets closer.

Governor Kemp will be hosting a town hall meeting this evening at 8:00 pm. You can tune in through your favorite local television station.

After reviewing ways of sanitizing the playground equipment, we have decided it’s safest to close the two City playgrounds – the Post Office Park and Burks Field Park. You are welcome to play in the areas while maintaining social distancing, but please stay off the playground equipment. We encourage parents to keep their children away from playground equipment in neighborhood parks as well.

The latest updates from the Georgia Department of Health have listed no reported cases of COVID -19 in Walton County. The one reported a few days ago was evidently a clerical error. Thank you to everyone for continuing to follow the Center for Disease Control’s guidelines for helping to stop the spread. We will get through this together.

We suspect that most of you are going on information overload about the COVID-19 situation. We are also aware that more and more “fake news” is appearing. Please use the resources below and on our web site to keep yourself informed.

Please continue to monitor official Local, State, and Federal sources for continuing information, provided below:

City Updates - https://socialcirclega.gov/city-covid-19-resources/
Walton County Updates - https://www.waltoncountyga.gov/
Georgia DPH Updates - https://dph.georgia.gov/novelcoronavirus
CDC Updates – http://coronavirus.gov

March 25 Update from Mayor and Council Regarding Coronavirus

Thank you to all our residents and businesses who have followed our recommendations to help stop the spread of COVID-19 and are following the CDC recommendations for social distancing and are sheltering in place. We do now have one reported case in Walton County. It is even more important to contain the spread by continuing the recommended practices.

To our residents: Please continue to support our local businesses as they adjust to doing business with social distancing in place. Call your favorite restaurant to place to-go orders. Call your local businesses to see what their current operation status is. Some are offering online shopping with curbside pickup, while others are open but working within social distancing guidelines.

To our businesses: Thank you for making the adjustments we requested. If you have questions, please call City Hall at (770) 464-2380.

In response to comments from citizens, we are going to extend our social media presence to Twitter and Instagram. For those who do not have access to the internet, we will continue to post the daily updates at City Hall.

Please continue to monitor official Local, State, and Federal sources for continuing information, provided below:

City Updates - https://socialcirclega.gov/city-covid-19-resources/
Walton County Updates - https://www.waltoncountyga.gov/
Georgia DPH Updates - https://dph.georgia.gov/novelcoronavirus
CDC Updates – http://coronavirus.gov

March 24 Update from Mayor and Council Regarding Coronavirus

Social Circle Georgia City LogoThe Social Circle Mayor and City Council held an emergency called meeting last night to consider additional actions in response to the COVID-19 situation.

An ordinance was adopted, that will expire at noon on April 6, that will allow business and necessary activity to continue, and will help protect our citizens and prevent the spread of the virus. There are currently no reported cases in Walton County, and we’d like to take actions that help keep it that way.

The following provisions were adopted:

  1. A Public Health State of Emergency was declared due to COVID-19. This allows the City to seek and to accept federal and state aid.
  2. City Council, boards and commissions can meet by teleconference. We will publicize meetings on Facebook and our website and provide a way for the public to listen in live. The next scheduled meeting is the Downtown Development Authority on April 9 at 10 am.
  3. Dining, consumption of alcohol and entertainment in Bars and Restaurants is prohibited until noon on April 6, unless this ordinance is extended. These businesses can sell food for delivery, pick-up, take-away and to go. Restaurants licensed to sell beer and wine may sell unopened containers of beer and wine with food orders during this period.
  4. Gyms and exercise centers are ordered to close.
  5. All other businesses and industries can continue to operate as long as they establish operating rules that follow CDC best practices; i.e. maintain six feet of separation between all persons at all times.
  6. Assemblies of more than 10 people are prohibited. This does not apply to employers with more than 10 employees as long as they follow the CDC guidelines, which include the physical separation.
  7. There will be no utility cut-offs this month so that citizens can follow CDC recommendations of hand washing.
  8. All residents are encouraged to follow CDC guidelines. These guidelines are to protect you as well as to prevent the spread to others. (https://www.whitehouse.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/03.16.20_coronavirus-guidance_8.5x11_315PM.pdf )

The full text of the ordinance can be seen at https://socialcirclega.gov/documents/an-emergency-ordinance-declaring-a-state-of-emergency-in-the-city-of-social-circle/

Thank you for your compliance with these items and taking actions to maximize the potential for you and your friends and family to stay healthy.

Please be aware of COVID-19 related scams that are beginning to spread faster than the virus. They may contact you by phone, email or even show up at your door. Never give out your Social Security Number, or any other private information to someone you do not know and did not contact first.

Finally, many are stepping up to help during this anxious period. We appreciate your kindness, the generous supportive volunteer spirit that is throughout this community.   Please see the Community Resources link at https://socialcirclega.gov/local-resources/.

If you have suggestions for needs to be met, please send a comment.

Please continue to monitor official Local, State, and Federal sources for continuing information, provided below:

City Updates - https://socialcirclega.gov/city-covid-19-resources/
Walton County Updates - https://www.waltoncountyga.gov/
Georgia DPH Updates - https://dph.georgia.gov/novelcoronavirus
CDC Updates – http://coronavirus.gov

March 23 Update from Mayor and Council Regarding Coronavirus

Social Circle Georgia City LogoAs we continue to practice social distancing, just a few reminders to help prevent the spread of germs.

  • Please stay home
    • If you feel sick or have a fever
    • If anyone in your household is sick
    • If you are a member of the high-risk groups
  • Limit your contact with others
    • If you must gather, keep the group size to 10 or less
    • When you are out, try to maintain six feet distance between people
    • Get food at restaurants to go
  • Practice good hygiene
    • Wash your hands after touching commonly touched surfaces
    • Disinfect frequently used items and touched surfaces
    • Avoid touching your face

Remember this is to protect you as well as others you may come in contact with. People may not have any symptoms but could still be contagious.

  • The City has suspended Transit service. If you need to go somewhere and do not have another way to get there, please call 770-464-2953.
  • The City Council has called an emergency meeting this evening at 6:30 to address COVID-19 health concerns. We will stream the meeting live on Facebook.
  • The W. H. Stanton Memorial Library is closed until March 31. They will reassess the situation at that time. All overdue fines are suspended.

Please continue to monitor official Local, State, and Federal sources for continuing information, provided below:

City Updates - https://socialcirclega.gov/city-covid-19-resources/
Walton County Updates - https://www.waltoncountyga.gov/
Georgia DPH Updates - https://dph.georgia.gov/novelcoronavirus
CDC Updates – http://coronavirus.gov

March 20 Update from Mayor and Council Regarding Coronavirus

Social Circle Georgia City LogoWe join our national, state, and local leaders in encouraging everyone to work for the common good. We each have the ability -- by our actions and attitudes -- to influence the future of this crisis. Continue to follow the guidelines on social distancing to help stop the spread of the disease.  Continue to support your friends, neighbors and local businesses in any way that you can. We believe that once this crisis is over, our community will rebound and be stronger than ever.

The City of Social Circle continues to provide all services with adjustments to protect our employees and our citizens. City Buildings are closed to walk-in traffic to limit in-person interactions. Provisions have been made for some employees to work from home, to enhance our ability to continue services to our community and enable our employees to care for their families. Information on changes to operations is provided on the City website and Facebook page, and daily posts are being issued as services are updated. Please see socialcirclega.gov/city-covid-19-resources/ for current information, community resources available to our citizens, City services adjustments, and information in support of our local businesses during this crisis.

  • From Advanced Disposal, our trash service provider: In the best interest of the health and well-being of our employees, we are asking the City of Social Circle to suspend household bulk item service at this time and to refrain from extra garbage bags outside of the cart. These items may pose the biggest risk to our employees because the virus can survive on some objects from inside the home up to 72 hours or more.  Essentially, we are asking that garbage collection will be cart contents only on a temporary basis.  Normal bulk item service will resume when the CDC lowers the risk factors.

We cannot know how long this will last, but we do know that by helping each other, by sharing kindness and grace and looking for opportunities and solutions we will comfort and brighten each other and push toward a brighter tomorrow.

Cornelia Lambert has a new video on why social distancing is important now.

Please continue to monitor official Local, State, and Federal sources for continuing information, provided below:

City Updates - https://socialcirclega.gov/city-covid-19-resources/
Walton County Updates - https://www.waltoncountyga.gov/
Georgia DPH Updates - https://dph.georgia.gov/novelcoronavirus
CDC Updates – http://coronavirus.gov

March 19 Update from Mayor and Council Regarding Coronavirus

A message from the Georgia Municipal Association (GMA) President Phil Best and GMA Executive Director Larry Hanson sets the tone for today’s update:

“This is a unique time in our nation’s history. It is a time when we’re being asked to make decisions we never thought we’d have to make in response to a crisis we never thought we would face. It is a time of both faith and of fear. It is a time in which we must have faith to overcome our fears. This is a time for local leaders to shine…and we know you will.”

To that message we’d like to add that this is a time for our citizens to shine … and you have!

Thank you to all the local businesses who have worked to balance their need to continue to do business as usual with the need to follow the social distancing guidelines recommended by President Trump. Restaurants are encouraging patrons to call in orders and come by and pick them up. Some stores are closing but giving their customers the option to shop online. Other businesses are helping to support social distancing while continuing to provide necessary services. Churches are taking their ministry outside of their walls to serve their neighbors.

Thank you to all citizens who have taken it upon themselves to step up and help their neighbors, who have seen a need and worked to fill it. Continue to reach out to friends and neighbors over the coming weeks to make sure they are ok. Emotional support is as necessary as making sure physical needs are being met.

The City is compiling a list of local resources on our web site. (socialcirclega.gov/local-resources/)

You can find information on local businesses on the Downtown Social Circle, GA Facebook page. (https://www.facebook.com/socialcirclega/)

Please continue to monitor official Local, State, and Federal sources for continuing information, provided below:

City Updates - https://socialcirclega.gov/city-covid-19-resources/
Walton County Updates - https://www.waltoncountyga.gov/
Georgia DPH Updates - https://dph.georgia.gov/novelcoronavirus
CDC Updates – http://coronavirus.gov

March 18 Update from Mayor and Council Regarding Coronavirus

Social Circle Georgia City LogoThe Coronavirus situation has become a global crisis. The President has declared a National Emergency. The Governor has declared a State Emergency. The Mayors and County Commission Chairmen are working together to do all we can to prepare and protect our communities, but the key to stopping the spread of the Coronavirus is the behavior of each citizen. By following the guidelines for “social distancing”, we can slow the spread of the Coronavirus and keep from overwhelming our health systems.

  1. SPACE yourself at least 6 feet from other people.
  2. AVOID Social Gatherings of more than 10 people.
  3. Use CARRYOUT, PICKUP, or DELIVERY from restaurants rather than eating in.
  4. LIMIT trips and social visits.
  5. DO NOT VISIT nursing homes, retirement homes, or long-term care facilities.
  6. WORK FROM HOME if you can. Follow CDC Guidance to protect you and your coworkers, if you can’t.
  7. PRACTICE GOOD HYGIENE.

Social Circle is known for the community spirit of its residents, small businesses, and corporate citizens.  Our willingness to work toward the common good is part of the City’s character. It is time for all of us -- every individual, family, business, church, organization, and club -- to do our part to protect our families, our friends, and our vulnerable neighbors from a potentially deadly infection. We are encouraging each of you, and every business and organization, to follow the President’s guidance for “social distancing” now.

In the words of Social Circle resident, Cornelia Lambert, “This is a moment for us to perform service to the community, and a moment to practice our shared value of loving our neighbors.”

We may never know whether we did far more than was necessary to limit the spread of this virus, but we will surely find out if we did not do enough.

Thank you to all the citizens of Social Circle for doing your part to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

Please continue to monitor official Local, State, and Federal sources for continuing information, provided below:

City Updates - https://socialcirclega.gov/city-covid-19-resources/
Walton County Updates - https://www.waltoncountyga.gov/
Georgia DPH Updates - https://dph.georgia.gov/novelcoronavirus
CDC Updates – http://coronavirus.gov

Joint Statement from Municipal and County Governments of Walton County

On Monday, February 16, 2020, Chairman Little met with city officials to discuss the coronavirus and its impact on county and city operations.

EMA Director Carl Morrow led this meeting and discussed ways the cities and the county can work together to alleviate the burden of COVID-19 on resources that may affect daily operations.

During this time, the cities and the county will work together to ensure a continuity of operations, especially in public safety. Citizens should know that public safety will continue to operate at the highest level possible and will continue to deliver quality service to the community. Fire and law enforcement agencies will continue to honor mutual aid agreements and assist each other when needed.

Each city has taken steps to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 to the public and its employees by minimizing person-to-person contact. The Cities of Social Circle and Monroe have closed city hall and only have essential personnel reporting to work. The City of Loganville and the City of Walnut Grove are both in full operation and are taking steps to ensure the safety of the public by ramping up cleaning and disinfecting of high contact surfaces and areas in their public buildings. Walton County Government is still in full operation except for the Walton County Recreation Department. All gyms and community centers are closed, and all organized recreational activities canceled.

The situation is being monitored closely, and each organization will adjust operations as necessary.

As COVID-19 spreads throughout Georgia, everyone is urged to follow the guidelines recommended by the Centers for Disease Control (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html) and the Georgia Department of Health (https://dph.georgia.gov/novelcoronavirus).

 

March 17 Update from Mayor and Council Regarding Coronavirus

Social Circle Georgia City Logo The City has been following the recommendations of President Trump and practicing social distancing while still providing essential City services.

City Council meeting tonight

Social Circle Transit

  • Social Circle Transit will continue to provide services, with limitations on passenger loads to maintain social distancing guidelines. Please call (770) 464-2953 to schedule your ride at least 24-hours in advance.

City Hall

  • City Hall front doors are closed but City Hall continues to function. Utility payments are being accepted at the drive-thru. For all other City business, please call the main City Hall number – 770-464-2380.

Court

  • The court docket for Wednesday, March 18 has been adjusted. From Social Circle Municipal Court Judge, Jeffrey Foster, “I have signed an order for continuing all arraignments, trials and sentencing matters until after April 13. If [there is] a client currently incarcerated, or facing a probation petition, those matters involve liberty and are of an immediate public safety concern. We will have court on those matter March 18, at 1:30 pm, with appropriate safety measures and distancing in place.”
  • If your court date was set for March 18, and you have not received a letter telling you when your date has been rescheduled to, please call the Court Clerk at (770) 464-6904.

Social Distancing,

Please continue to monitor official Local, State, and Federal sources for continuing information, provided below:

City Updates - https://socialcirclega.gov/city-covid-19-resources/
Walton County Updates - https://www.waltoncountyga.gov/
Georgia DPH Updates - https://dph.georgia.gov/novelcoronavirus
CDC Updates – http://coronovirus.gov