City closing offices due to coronavirus
Brazil Mayor Brian Wyndham says he is heading the recommendations of “those in the know” when it comes to the COVID-19 crisis.
The City of Brazil announced closings of public buildings Thursday to reduce the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) following Federal recommendations.
“The City will still be operational. There will be employees able to help residents on the phone, online, by fax, or even text. There’s a lot of technology available to us right now,” said Wyndham. “The offices will just not be open to the public, but everything will still be working like normal.”
Locations including City Hall, City Garage, Water Treatment Plant, and the Wastewater Plant will be closed to the public beginning noon Friday, March 20.
Wyndham said the facilities should reopen to the public Wednesday, April 1, but the health situation will be reviewed before a firm decision is made.
“We are trying to do what our commander-in-chief, the president, recommends. I figure the officials in Washington and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention know a lot more about this than we do,” Wyndham said about the response to the COVID-19 outbreak. “I figure they got the answers because they have the experts working on this problem, the best there is. We’re going to follow those guidelines.”
Wyndham explained the shifts for workers have also been staggered slightly, allowing people to come to work, get their assignments, and go to work before the next shift comes in for the day. Lunch schedules are also being staggered to help maintain “social distance” and limit contact.
The Brazil Police Department has also established plans and staggered scheduling to help keep officers apart while maintaining their duties and provide service for residents.
“We are a small department and can’t afford to have several officers get sick all at once,” said the mayor, who added officers had been supplied with materials to protect against the virus, including special suits. “We also have the masks for any employee who feels they need one.”
To make payments for water bills, apply for building or handgun permits, or pay for car impound fees can call the departments. Payments using money orders can also be dropped into the City Hall payment dropbox on the4 west side of the building, or payments can be made online.
“We are not taking cash payments during this time,” said the mayor.
Scheduled meetings will continue unless otherwise notified.
“We encourage attendance at those meetings only if absolutely necessary,” Wyndham said. “This is uncharted territory, to say the least.”
When a tragedy happens, the mayor said, that is usually when you see the best of humanity, but there are always a few cases of the worse.
“I’ve never experienced anything like this in my lifetime. I admit it’s stressful,” Wyndham said. “I worry for our older residents who can’t get out or those who require something. Hoarding right now is not necessary. If we all just shopped for what we needed, there wouldn’t be a shortage of anything.”
If a resident is in dire need of help, the mayor said they could call City Hall.
“We have people who have volunteered to help, and I will do everything I that’s in my power to help,” he said. “We have employees who are willing to help too. I believe we are going to get through this by working together.”
For additional information, the mayor said to call the proper departments. A copy of the City’s press release, with various department phone numbers, is available at www.thebrailtimes.com and also on the City’s website at brazil.in.gov.