Courthouse closed for cleaning after potential COVID-19 exposure

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BLAIRSVILLE, Ga – Union County Courthouse will be closed to the public until Monday, April 13 for deep cleaning after the building experienced potential exposure to COVID-19.

Sole Commissioner Lamar Paris explained the situation on his Facebook on Sunday, April 5. Last week, March 31, “a small, impromptu swearing-in ceremony took place” for a new circuit court employee. The commissioner was unaware of the ceremony taking place.

At this event, an out of town guest attended, who received notification on Friday, April 3 that a “very close friend” had tested positive for COVID-19.  Neith this individual nor the friend were from Union County.

Union County government has chosen to err on the side of caution and close the courthouse for “extreme cleaning” over the course of the next five days. The public can continue to conduct their courthouse-related business over the phone starting on Tuesday. The staff will be working from home. They are sorry for any inconvenience this might cause Union County residents.

Paris urged everyone to “PLEASE practice social distancing and STAY HOME, as much as possible. Shelter in Place! This Corona Virus is so dang easy to spread. Stay safe and DO NOT take COVID-19 for granted. Small mistakes can lead to large ones!!!”

Due to Gov. Brian Kemp’s shelter in place executive order, many precautions the county and city took to limit spread were undone. County commissioners can now only pass ordinances that enforce Kemp’s and any previously passed ordinances, not in accordance, were overturned. The order makes it impossible to pass or enforce an ordinance that bans rental properties from operating during the state of emergency.

County governments also have no control over state parks, which are open for business until the gov. decides to close them.

At this time, the Georgia Department of Public Health had reported one confirmed case in Union County.

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