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COVID-19: Camp Verde goes back to Phase I safety measures

Beginning Nov. 30, Camp Verde Town Hall will be open to the public by appointment only. Anyone entering Town Hall is expected to wear a mask. VVN/Bill Helm

Beginning Nov. 30, Camp Verde Town Hall will be open to the public by appointment only. Anyone entering Town Hall is expected to wear a mask. VVN/Bill Helm

CAMP VERDE — With COVID-19 cases increasing nearly fivefold since September, the Town of Camp Verde will revert to Phase I safety measures beginning Nov. 30, Town Manager Russ Martin said Wednesday.

This also means that council meetings will return to a Zoom-only component, Camp Verde Deputy Clerk Virginia Jones said Tuesday.

“You must notify the Town Clerk at 928-554-0021 should you require accommodations that do not allow you to attend by zoom,” Jones said.

A complete breakdown of Phase I safety measures is at campverde.az.gov.

Martin explained that the plan to return to Phase I was intended “when the numbers show that community spread is significant, currently 16% in Yavapai County, rolling two-week average.”

“Things have changed rather dramatically again, especially locally with the percentages and hospital occupancy rates leading to this decision to alter the current plan and take a step back here in Camp Verde,” Martin said. “We encourage the public to prioritize their health and the health of their family and as such the town is going back to Phase 1 which means a slight change to our operations.”

Although the library will continue with its current hours – 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday – patrons will be limit to no more than one hour on the library’s computers, as well as no more than one hour in the library, Director Kathy Hellman said Wednesday.

The library’s meeting rooms, as well as its quiet/study rooms, will also not be available to the public during Phase I.

Safety protocols of other Verde Valley municipalities

The City of Cottonwood will not return to Phase I, City Manager Ron Corbin said Tuesday. “Not at this time.”

“While we have employees (who have tested) positive, none of them contracted the disease because of an interaction with a customer,” Corbin said. “The only employee-to-employee transmission was in the fire department, and of course we are not shutting down that department.”

Wednesday, Sedona City Manager Justin Clifton said he will speak with Mayor Sandy Moriarty about possibly returning to Phase I.

Should Sedona revert back to Phase I, city offices would be closed to the public, except by appointment, Clifton said.

Town managers for Clarkdale and Jerome explained Tuesday that their towns have exercised great caution since the pandemic.

Jerome Town Hall has kept its doors locked and serves the public via phone, email, and when necessary, by appointment.

“We have not labeled the phases,” Town Manager Candace Gallagher said. “But (we) have remained in the same response since the beginning, very cautious.”

Anyone who enters Jerome Town Hall must be masked, Gallagher said.

“We sanitize surfaces regularly and provide hand sanitizer at our front door,” she said. “Town Hall staff is masked when dealing with the public, and if in close proximity to each other. All meetings are conducted via Zoom. Some staff members are teleworking during part of the week.”

Not only are Clarkdale staffers on a staggered schedule, but the town also takes appointments if the public needs to speak to staff face-to-face, Town Manager Tracie Hlavinka said.

“All town operations are still functioning and will continue to do so,” she said. “With the holidays and the cases spiking, we continue to assist the situation and make necessary changes to keep the employees and public safe.”

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