OLYMPIA – Today, the Thurston County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously to extend and amend the resolution declaring the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak a local emergency in Thurston County through midnight on Sunday, May 31, 2020. The original resolution, passed on Thursday, March 12, 2020, expires on Wednesday, April 15, 2020.
The declaration of a local emergency allows the county, by state law, to undertake emergency purchases and activates the Thurston County Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan. The declaration authorizes county departments and offices to enter into contracts and incur obligations necessary to combat the emergency and protect the health and safety of persons, property, and the environment, and provide emergency assistance to the victims of the emergency. As of 3 p.m. today there were 81 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Thurston County.
The resolution was amended as follows: Public access is closed to all county facilities, with the exception of the Sherriff's Office, Prosecuting Attorney's Office, District Court, Superior Court, the Clerk's Office, and county trails, from Friday, April 3, 2020 through Friday, May 15, 2020. The resolution also states that the proclamation of a local emergency and modifications of business hours of county offices and departments will be rescinded, without further action of the Board, if the Governor does not extend his Stay Home, Stay Healthy Order beyond Monday, May 4, 2020.
The Board then unanimously voted to pass an ordinance aimed at economic security and relief during the COVID-19 emergency. The ordinance temporarily allows extensions of the expiration date for certain development related building applications and approvals. Extension timelines include:
|Title/Section||What is addressed||Existing Timeline||Extension|
|14.17.030||Building Permit expiration||Valid for 1 Year with no activity||Extended automatically to September 30, 2020|
|18.10.050||Land Use Applications - Response to additional information requests||Valid for 180 days with no response||Extended automatically an additional 180 days|
|18.12.150||Preliminary Plats||Up to 15 years (depending on type of subdivision)||Extended automatically to September 30, 2020|
|18.16.110||Final Plats||5 years||Extended automatically to September 30, 2020|
|18.32.140||Short Plats||1 year||Extended automatically to September 30, 2020|
|18.32.245||Short Plats in relation to zoning requirements||5 years||Extended automatically to September 30, 2020|
|20.54.040||Special Use Permits||3 years||Extended automatically to September 30, 2020|
|24.45.090||Reasonable Use Exception||3 years||Extended automatically to September 30, 2020|
This emergency has the potential to delay reviews and impede project progress, including the delay of public hearings and other requirements for development project approvals. The intent of the ordinance is to address these potential economic impacts of the COVID-19 emergency.
The following resources are a trusted community source for more information about COVID-19:
Thurston County Public Health and Social Services – COVID-19 website
Mental Health and Coping
COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions
Thurston Strong Economic Recovery Initiative
Thurston Economic Development Council
Thurston County Facebook Page
Thurston County Twitter Page
Public Health and Social Services Facebook Page
Public Health and Social Services Twitter Page
Washington State Department of Health
Centers for Disease Control
FEMA Coronavirus Rumor Control
Washington State Coronavirus (COVID-19) hotline at 1-800-525-0127
Business Hotline at 1-888-821-6652