County residents have inquired about when County recreational facilities such as ballparks would be able to be used based upon the closures and limitations established by the Governor’s Executive Orders.
Previously, the Governor had issued Executive Order No. 17 prohibiting social gatherings of 10 or more people which would have prohibited the use of ballparks and other facilities for sporting events.
Later the Governor issued Executive Order No. 30 continuing to prohibit gatherings of 10 or more people and specifically stated that this included youth and adult sporting events. He specifically stated that persons in the state of Tennessee shall not participate in social or recreational gatherings of 10 or more people. His order also stated that “social and recreational gatherings include youth and adult sporting events”.
On May 17, 2020 later the Governor issued Executive Order No. 35 continuing to prohibit gatherings of 10 or more people and provided that sporting event venues such as ballparks would remain closed until further orders. He specifically provided under 11.a.iii that “sporting events” shall continue to be closed to members or to public for the time being.
It is expected that the Governor within the next few days will issue additional information concerning the use of those facilities. If in fact they are allowed to be open at some point and time it is expected that several restrictions will be put in place before they can be used. Likewise, Macon County in cooperation with the various sports leagues will develop a plan that could lead to the use of those facilities, if a process can be put in place to protect the children and others participating.
The Macon County Commissioners and the Macon County Mayor have thoughtfully and with a great deal of concern enacted provisions to protect the use of county facilities so that county employees and our citizens have a measure of protection during the COVID-19 crisis. The Macon County Commissioners and the Mayor have also thoughtfully considered the liability faced by the county and its taxpayers in the event that the use of its facilities causes the sickness or death of facility users. The Macon County Commissioners and the Mayor will continue to strike a balance between protecting the health of all the county residents, especially the children, the pocketbooks of the taxpayers and the interests in being able to use county recreational and other facilities.
Based upon the current orders of the Governor and trying to balance the best interest of all Macon Countians all county recreational facilities will be closed “for the time being” and the dates for which those facilities can be opened will be determined depending on the Governor’s Executive orders.