Both Eufaula and Barbour County officially declared a state of emergency last week during special called meetings, each a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey previously declared a state-wide state of emergency on March 13.

The emergency declaration was made pursuant to the Alabama Emergency Management Act of 1955. During times of emergency, the Alabama Emergency Management Act allows state and local governments to declare a state of emergency in order to waive procedures and formalities related to such matters as performance of public work, entering into contracts, appropriation and expenditure of public funds, and other essential government functions. In addition, the Act permits the City Council to appropriate and expend funds for emergency management purposes, undertake emergency planning, and take other actions with respect to emergency disaster relief.

In addition to declaring a state of local emergency, the City Council authorized Mayor Jack Tibbs to act on its behalf in exercising authority to ensure the health, safety, and welfare of the citizens of Eufaula.

The City Council closed all city buildings to the public, with the exception of offices providing essential services to the public.

The state of emergency is effective immediately and will remain in place until April 6. The authorizing resolution allows City Council President Johnny Knight to extend the state of local emergency for up to six weeks.

Both Barbour County Courthouses were to be closed to the public at the end of business on March 20. Employees will report to work as usual. Notices will be posted on the doors with contact names and telephone numbers. In the event that conditions change rapidly and we have to send employees home, Barbour County will forward the main office telephones to cell phones for the elected officials (Probate & Revenue Commissioner) for the County Commission.

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