Ripon City Hall will be closed to the public from now through the end of the month.
For that matter, so are all Parks & Recreation programs along with the recycling center and the Blossom Express Transit Service, to name a few.
City Council met Monday afternoon for an emergency session, approving such suspensions in an effort to safeguard the community against the spread of COVID-19.
“Much has quickly changed during these last few days,” said City Administrator Kevin Werner, referencing the guidelines from federal and state to reduce the spread of the coronavirus disease.
He added: “This is constantly evolving.”
Flag football season, for starters, was scheduled to begin this week. This Parks & Rec program will be suspended through the end of the month, at least for now.
“We could move forward in a couple weeks and possibly still get in a full schedule,” Werner said.
All facility rentals are canceled – those who paid for these places to conduct their special events in March are in line to get a full refund or a reschedule.
The Ripon Recycling Center is closed through the end of the month. The City along with Ripon Unified and American Recycling has a program in place that benefits students at Weston, Ripon Elementary, Ripona, Park View and Colony Oak.
“We’ve already contacted Superintendent Ziggy Robeson (on the closure) – she’s on board,” Werner said.
City Council – outside of emergency sessions – along with the Parks & Rec. and Planning commission meetings are canceled.
As for City Hall, the front doors will be locked and the lobby is closed to the public.
“We’re here to serve the community,” Werner said. “We can still meet with those who schedule an appointment.”
The Ripon Memorial Library, as a branch of the San Joaquin County Public Library, is closed through March 31.
Activities at the Ripon Senior Center – the seniors are more at-risk with the coronavirus disease – are also suspended, for the exception of the meal programs.
In addition, the Blossom Express Transit Service, with the elderly making up a good portion of its ridership, has been placed on hold through the end of the month.
Werner said that he recently met with all of the department heads on these decisions on safeguarding the community, calling it “a team effort.”