LaPorte County Health Officer’s Order as requested by Mayors, County Elected Officials and local legislative delegation to address late Fall, 2020 surge in Covid-19 cases in LaPorte County, Indiana
WHEREAS, across the State of Indiana and LaPorte County, cases, deaths and hospitalizations from Covid-19 have reached new alarming highs in the past few days,
WHEREAS, LaPorte County now has 3,265 cases reported with positivity rates up to 12.1 percent and 78 deaths, placing this county among the Orange category of counties, warranting an urgent and unified response, and
WHEREAS, pursuant to the laws of the State of Indiana, I have the authority under I.C. 16-20-1-24 to “forbid public gatherings when considered necessary to prevent and stop epidemics,” and I.C. 16-20-1-25 also allows me to “abate” any condition that may “transmit, generate or promote disease” and,
WHEREAS, I have consulted with a range of local elected officials including our county commissioners, county council president, the Mayors of both the City of LaPorte and City of Michigan City as well as our local state legislative delegation,
Whereas, the Governor has instituted some new restrictions that are incorporated herein and he has given discretion to local health departments to take other such actions as are necessary to address this pandemic,
NOW THEREFORE PURSUANT TO THE AUTHORITY VESTED IN ME BY THE LAWS OF THE STATE OF INDIANA, I HEREBY DECREE AND ORDER THE FOLLOWING
1. Consistent with the Governor’s executive order 20-48 on restrictions for Orange counties – social events are limited to 50 persons. (If the county shifts to a Red designation, then the applicable limitation of 25 persons will apply.)
2. Special events of more than 50 people will need approval from the LaPorte County Health Department. Specifically, special or seasonal events including concerts or musical performances, movie screenings, fairs, festivals, weddings, wedding receptions, convocations and sporting events that anticipate attendance of more than 50 persons must obtain approval from the Health Department and/or applicable state agency.
3. Governor’s mask mandate remains in full force and effect with both employees and patrons at any establishment required to wear a mask that fully covers both the nose and mouth.
4. Indoor and outdoor capacity for bars, restaurants and entertainment venues to be governed strictly by CDC social distancing guidelines.
5. Self-serve buffets and salad bars, as well as karaoke, are banned.
6. Maximum party size at individual tables in restaurants, bars and clubs will be reduced to six.
7. Midnight closure requirement for all bars, restaurants, and clubs.
8. Retail establishments limited to 2 persons per 1,000 square foot of retail space with all carts sanitized and shall not exceed two hundred fifty (250) persons in any retail establishment at any time. Retail establishments with 2,000 square feet or less may allow up to five (5) customers at one time.
9. Gyms and fitness studios, including locker rooms are subject to strict adherence to social distancing requirements.
10. Libraries, funeral homes, swimming pools are also subject to strict adherence to social distancing requirements
11. Inspectors from both the City of LaPorte and City of Michigan City may assist the LaPorte County Health Department with enforcement and compliance of the above and will be paid by CARES Act funds provided to LaPorte County and/or funds offered by the Governor to assist with local compliance measures. (Such city inspectors will be paid by county government as “extra hire” personnel for duties conducted after normal work hours with their respective city.)
12. Employees, patrons or members of the general public are encouraged to contact the LaPorte County Health Department Covid-19 hotline at 219/362-2525 with reports of non-compliance with this Order.
ALL OF WHICH IS ORDERED THIS 16th DAY OF November, 2020 and will continue in full
force and effect until further notice.
Sandra Deausy, M.D.
LaPorte County Health Officer