Declaration extension?

In a special meeting this evening, the Assembly will hear public testimony on a possible sixth extension of the Declaration of Civil Emergency to halt the spread of the coronavirus. The declaration first was issued in March by then-Mayor Ethan Berkowitz and is scheduled to expire in a few weeks.

Whether the wide-ranging declarations have been effective is arguable. Whether future declarations will be more effective in halting the spread of COVID-19 also is arguable. The effects on such declarations on the city’s economy and business community have been horrendous, as has the virus itself.

What is not arguable is that Anchorage is experiencing a deadly surge in COVID-19 infections and the big questions remain: How do we deal with it? Do the declarations do any good?

You may want to weigh in on the debate tonight. The meeting begins at 6 p.m. in the Assembly chambers in the Loussac Library. Instructions on testifying in person, in writing or by telephone are listed here.

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