On Thursday, May 14, 2020, Governor Kate Brown and the Oregon Health Authority determined that Marion County's application for a limited reopening must be deferred to a later date. While many counties across Oregon will begin reopening on May 15, others, including Marion and Polk counties, will not yet reopen. Our application will be reviewed by the state again next Wednesday.
Meanwhile, statewide and in Marion County, some stand-alone "Main Street" retail businesses, such as furniture stores, art galleries, jewelry stores, and boutiques, can reopen on May 15 if they agree to follow safety guidelines. Additionally, childcare, summer school, camps, and youth programs can reopen with specific limitations and guidelines. We also want our community to know that all county parks and boat ramps will be open for day use beginning May 15 (playgrounds will remain closed).
In response to Governor Brown's decision, Commission Chair Colm Willis shared, "My heart goes out to all of the people who have been affected by this virus, including all of the family-owned businesses and their employees who have not had a paycheck for more than two months. We will continue to do everything we can to fight the spread of COVID-19 in our community and get the people of Marion County back to work as soon as possible."
We remain committed to working with the Governor's office, the Oregon Health Authority, and local health and community partners. We are reviewing the information provided by the Governor's Office and are considering all of our options in moving forward toward timely reopening.