Sweet Home moves to assist busineses

Sweet Home moves to assist busineses

SWEET HOME – The Sweet Home City Council has approved measures to ease financial burdens on local businesses and the general public affected by the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic through the Sweet Home Pandemic Response Plan.

City Manager Ray Towry said the council has declared a state of emergency, although as of Monday, there are no known COVID-19 cases in the community.

Businesses that have to close due to the COVID-19 pandemic rules, such as take-out or drive-through restaurant meals only implemented by the state, will be allowed to shut off their utility account so new monthly charges don’t accrue.

Also, the city will not charge shut off and reconnection fees.

“They will be paid for from our economic development funds,” Towry said.

The fee waiver is allowed only once, Towry said.

Residential customers may also request negotiation of payment plans or deferrals as well as a waiver of late, shut off turn on fees, Towry said. The transactions must be between the account holder and the city.

Businesses and residents can call 541-367-5128 for more information.

“We also will not shut off services for any utility account due to non-payment,” Towry said.

The council is also considering ways to assist business owners who apply for Small Business Administration loans as part of the emergency, but those plans have not been finalized.

The council also gave Towry authority to waive any other city fees during the current emergency.

The city will continue to provide services at the following levels:

City Hall: Closed to the public. The city will conduct normal business via telephone (541-367-5128) or by electronic means.

City Parks: Closed

Library: Closed until further notice. Library patrons can access books online through Library2Go. All due dates have been extended. Dates for items on hold have also be extended.

Municipal Courts: Closed to the public. Call 541-367-4660 or by electronic means. Proceedings are postponed until May 13 and after. Letters with new court dates are being mailed.

Police: Open normal business hours. No public fingerprinting and the public should limit visits to lobby area to emergencies only.

Public Works: Fully operational, but closed to the public. Not accepting deliveries.

Community partners:

— Senior Center: Closed until further notice. Wednesday lunch will be take-out only.

— Sweet Home Emergency Ministries (SHEM) Food Bank: Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday from 9-11:30 a.m.

— Linn County Public Health COVID-19 Call Center: 541-967-3888, open from 8:30 a.m.–5 p.m. seven days a week.

— Meals on Wheels: Preparing and delivering meals on Monday, Tuesday and Friday. All other meals take-out.

— Sweet Home School District: Schools will be closed March 16 - April 28. COVID-19 Resources for Families and Online Learning Resources to assist families.

— Boys & Girls Club: Closed until April 28. Serving to-go lunches between 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. The to-go lunches can be picked up outside the building. Children must be present to collect the to-go lunch.

— Sweet Home Sanitation: Collection trucks are running on schedule. The Transfer Station is open normal hours. Customers are asked to remain in their vehicles. Only 2 vehicles will be allowed in the yard at a time. The office is closed to the public. Call 541-367-2535 Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Payment box is located near front door.

— Community Pool: Closed until further notice.

— Linn Shuttle: All 10 regular routes running. Start time of 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., with six routes on Saturday.

— Sweet Home Shopper: Regular service from 6 a.m. to 8:40 p.m. Monday through Friday; Saturday service from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

— Sweet Home Dial-A-Bus: Regular service from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

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