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File #: 22-353    Version: 1 Name:
Type: Report Status: Work Session
File created: 7/6/2022 In control: Board of Supervisors
On agenda: 8/17/2022 Final action:
Title: COVID-19 Reconstitution Update
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AGENDA DATE:  8/17/2022




COVID-19 Reconstitution Update



SUBJECT/PROPOSAL/REQUEST:   Receive a COVID-19 Reconstitution update of local COVID-19 metrics and operational plans for public meetings


ITEM TYPE:  Regular Information Item


STAFF CONTACT(S):  Richardson, Henry, Herrick, Burton, Coltrane, Kilroy, Stewart


PRESENTER (S):  Trevor Henry, Emily Kilroy


LEGAL REVIEW:   Not Required


REVIEWED BY: Jeffrey B. Richardson


BACKGROUND:  On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization declared the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, and the disease it causes, commonly referred to as COVID-19, a pandemic. On March 12, 2020, the County Executive, acting as the Director of Emergency Management, declared a local emergency because of the COVID-19 pandemic pursuant to Virginia Code 44-146.21, and this declaration was confirmed by the Board of Supervisors on March 17, 2020. Beginning on April 1, 2020, all public meetings have been held virtually, pursuant to and in compliance with Ordinance No. 20-A(16), An Ordinance to Ensure the Continuity of Government During the COVID-19 Disaster.

On March 30, 2020, Albemarle County closed its office buildings to the public and transitioned to virtual service delivery, with key exceptions in public safety, inspections, and maintenance. Throughout the pandemic, adjustments have been made to County operations in-line with guidance and best practices from federal and state public health and safety agencies.

At its March 2, 2022 work session, the Board provided direction to begin meetings of the Board, Planning Commission, and School Board (Tier 1 public bodies) in April 2022 and approved a framework for Tier 2 “virtual public access” meetings and Tier 3 “in-person meetings” for its various Boards and Commissions - Tier 2 being reserved for those with legislative or judicial function and Tier 3 being for those with an advisory function. On May 18, 2022, due to projected rising cases, the Board endorsed holding further reconstitution of public meetings until the Continuity of Government period ends, in September 2022, and for staff to return to the Board with a final briefing in August 2022.


STRATEGIC PLAN: Mission - To enhance the well-being and quality of life for all community members through the provision of the highest level of public service consistent with the prudent use of public funds.


DISCUSSION:  To prepare for in-person public meetings, investments have been made in equipment, software, and training to allow for some meetings to have elements of virtual participation and/or virtual access for the public, under the 3-Tier framework for public meetings. Staff have been trained on the new system and are prepared to transition public meetings to be held with members of public bodies convening in-person, in compliance with the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Staff expects all public meetings held beginning September 1, 2022 will be held under the new framework.


BUDGET IMPACT: There is no budget impact associated with this transition.




Staff recommends the Board receive this update.


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