Responding to the news Monday that Pierce County will move back to Phase 2 of the state’s Roadmap to Recovery plan, Pierce County Council Chair Derek Young issued the following statement:
“The news that our county will return to Phase 2 effective April 16 is discouraging. This setback is a gut-punch to all of us, especially our Pierce County businesses that made it through the winter.
Council is prepared to make $4 million available from the county’s general fund to aid small businesses and non-profits. We hope this helps retailers, restaurants, and fitness centers that recently expanded operations under Phase 3 to avoid layoffs and stay in business to get through what we hope is a short duration event.
Pierce County was allocated $88 million from the federal government in its first round of funding from the American Recovery Plan Act. We haven’t received the money yet, but Council is already looking at ways we can invest in the community to help with recovery efforts so that once it is received, we act quickly.
The hope is once we receive the federal funding, we can continue to support the recovery of our community, as well as reimburse the general fund for this $4 million expenditure that is needed now.
To help get us back to Phase 3 we need to see average case counts drop below 200 cases per 100,000 people and hospitalizations below 5 over a seven-day period.
We can all help these local businesses by continuing to support them through to-go orders, outdoor dining and by following public health safety guidelines:
- Wear a mask in public
- Don’t gather in large groups
- Maintain social distance from others outside your household
- Wash your hands frequently
Additionally, this Thursday all Washington residents 16 years old and older are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine. Residents are encouraged to get vaccinated to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 and its variants in our community.”
The Pierce County Council will take action on the proposed $4 million allocation at its regular meeting Tuesday, April 13 at 3 p.m.