Clackamas County Board of Commissioners Chair Tootie Smith statement related to Governor Kate Brown’s recent announcement about counties moving into Extreme Risk

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Clackamas County Board Chair Tootie Smith issues the following statement:

It is time Governor Kate Brown take another approach to reducing the spread of COVID-19. The plan that she has been using for the past year to slow the spread of the disease by keeping businesses locked down has not adapted to this dynamic pandemic. Her metrics for reopening are eroding trusts in many communities including Clackamas County.

Governor Brown’s plan is an abject failure, driving businesses to bankruptcy, people to the unemployment line and harming the mental health of adults and children alike.
It is time for Governor Brown to hand control over back to the local public health authority and county commissions as outlined by law. We know our counties. We know our communities. We know how this disease is spreading in our communities.

It is time to try new innovative and proven technologies to fight COVID-19.

As more and more people are being vaccinated every day, it is time for a new approach that does not penalize businesses. I ask that the state use the data driven approach they have touted to make decisions about business restrictions. If the state were truly using a data driven approach we would not be restricting restaurants and closing gyms.

Clackamas County residents, I want to be clear, please continue to wear your mask, watch your distance and keep good hygiene so we can open up. Businesses, please prepare to shut down, again, with little notice from the state.

I am so sorry these lockdowns continue. As the Chair of the Clackamas County Board, I am going to continue to advocate to the state that they come up with a sensible approach to slow the spread of COVID-19 without causing additional harm to our community and businesses.