Wilkes Journal Patriot
A letter from the Wilkes County commissioners seeking authority to lift certain mandates imposed by Gov. Roy Cooper to help fight the coronavirus will be mailed to Cooper according to the Chairman of the Wilkes Board of Commissioners, Eddie Settle.
“Please accept this letter as an official request to allow all county governments the ultimate authority to reopen businesses, churches and industries” in their counties, stated the letter Settle shared with the Wilkes Journal-Patriot. The letter, on Wilkes County government letterhead, is identified as being from Settle and three of the other four county commissioners. Settle said Commissioner Gary Blevins didn’t want his name included.
The letter references Cooper’s March 27 stay at home order, intended to help prevent the virus from spreading. The order, which expires April 29, resulted in some businesses temporarily closing and cut profits of others. Restaurants can only serve food via take-out, drive-through or delivery. The order bans mass gatherings of more than 10 people statewide, but allows gatherings of up to 50 people at funerals.
It says the longer businesses can’t operate due to restrictions, the further each county and the state “will descend into economic chaos.” It notes the importance of sales tax revenue for funding local public services and cites the freedom of religion, speech and assembly rights under the U.S. Constitution.
The letter also commends Cooper and his team for their efforts to combat COVID-19.
According to the Charlotte Observer, the Lincoln and Gaston county commissioners recently urged Cooper to hand future decision-making regarding the reopening of restaurants and businesses to them.