Commissioners for the City of Helen met in an Emergency Commission Meeting on March 31, 2020. They voted for additional restrictions to be implemented to help avoid the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus).
The following businesses are hereby ordered closed effective immediately (specifically included, but not limited to):
- Hotels and motels (Current guest must leave by April 1, 2020 at 12:00 noon; essential service guest are excluded.)
- Short term vacation rentals of houses and cabins
- Arcades, amusement parks, and related businesses
- Horse carriage rides
- Any outdoor commercial day use picnic table areas
- Any and all other businesses not listed as being permitted to remain open (See below.)
- All city parks, public areas, playgrounds, recreational areas, or similar places (Individuals or families may continue to use sidewalks for walking or other exercise, provided that six foot social distancing parameters are maintained.)
The following businesses may remain open during the Local State of Emergency due to the nature of their operation provided six foot social distancing parameters are maintained:
- Restaurants and other facilities that prepare and serve food, but shall ONLY be permitted to remain open for drive through or curbside services. If restaurants remain open for drive through or curbside service, customers MUST remain in their vehicle throughout the process and food MUST be taken from the premises by the vehicle. If a restaurant is licensed to sell beer and wine for on-premises consumption, such restaurant, during the effective dates of this ordinance only, shall be authorized to sell UNOPENED bottles or cans of beer or wine for take-out consumption off-premise.
- Grocery stores, convenience stores, and other establishments engaged in, as their primary purpose, the retail sale of canned or packaged foods, fruits, and vegetables, pet supplies, meats, and/or any other household consumer products (such as cleaning and personal care products). This includes stores that sell groceries and also sell other nongrocery products, and products necessary to maintaining the safety, sanitation, and essential operation of residences.
- Gas stations, convenience stores, auto-supply stores, hardware stores and related facilities
- Banks and related financial institutions
- Plumbers, electricians, exterminators, and other service providers who provide services that are necessary to maintaining the safety, sanitation, and essential operation of residences and essential businesses
- Laundries/Laundromats, provided that the social distancing parameters required are enforced
- Sanitation Services
- Large scale outdoor recreational facilities, such as golf courses, provided that the social distancing parameters required are enforced
- Home Offices or such businesses conducted solely as "home businesses" and not open to the public
- Any business that is identified as a critical infrastructure business as designate by the Governor of the State of Georgia or so identified by U.S. Department of Homeland Security Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency.
To view Ordinance 20-03-02 in its entirety, please click the following: link: Ordinance 20-03-02: COVID-19 State of Emergency Additional Restrictions
If you have any questions, please feel free to call Helen City Hall at 706-878-2733, Monday - Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.