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City and health department officials urge COVID caution for businesses

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Quincy Mayor Kyle Moore and public health administrator Jerrod Welch joined a zoom call Friday morning with a number of local businesses.

In their words, it's time for everyone to buckle down on their COVID-19 prevention efforts or the state could step in and send the region back down to earlier phases.

Local buisness owners said another shutdown would be a nightmare.

"For us, the economic impact would be difficult," Three Branches co-cowner Kris Kutcher said

It's for that reason, masks are required inside the store.

"We all have our own opinion, one way or the other," Kutcher said. "But for us, just to basically save our industry and save our business and many others like ours, we have to start doing something."

City leaders and health officials urge businesses across the city to follow suit.

"(If) we get upwards of 75 to 80 percent of people to mask most of the time, we can break this disease cycle," public health administrator Jerrod Welch said.

They say this time their pleas are more urgent.

"Across our region, the disease burden grows, the positivity rate is increasing," mayor Kyle Moore said.

Moore said it has already attracted the attention of the governor.

"But make no mistake as our statewide numbers continue to increase, the governor at any moment could start mitigation efforts."

He said any move backwards could have disastrous consequences.

"We know that our bars and restaurants cannot take a single day of being closed in addition to what they've already been closed," Moore said.

So officials and businesses are asking people tonight to mask up, order out, and socially distance for a simple reason.

"Generally as the mayor said, keep our destiny in our own hands," Welch said.

Moore said a number of suggestions for businesses, including having employees work remotely if possible and having a plan to ensure continuity of business if an employee has to quarantine.

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Blake Sammann

Blake Sammann is a reporter and weekend anchor at WGEM News.

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