The latest town council meeting (March 8) was the first in 2021 to be held inside the chambers.
“It’s been since November 23 that we all sat in the same room together and had a council meeting,” noted mayor Jeff Genung as he opened the evening.
“It seems like way longer, but also sometimes it seems way shorter. Who would have thought a year ago this time we’d be where we are today and grappling with what we are, in the globe, in the community and everything that we’ve gone through.”
This is the second time that council meetings have ‘returned’ to the RancheHouse’s council chambers following the local arrival of COVID-19.
The March 9, 2020 meeting had been the last to be held physically, before moving to Microsoft Teams for the March 23 meeting following the first closure of public facilities. Meetings were held virtually through last summer.
On September 14, 2020, meetings returned to council chambers for the first time since the pandemic, with plexiglass dividers and adjusted gallery seating. The November 23 meeting had been the last to be conducted in this fashion, before what is commonly referred to as the ‘second wave’ of the pandemic forced meetings back to virtual.
“It’s so nice to be able to be back in-person today, we are doing this as a bit of a ‘baby step’ forward to show that with the lifting of some of the restrictions, that we can model that as an organization and do that with our council.”
He took a moment to note the continued plexiglass, mask and sanitization efforts in place.
“We’ve made a lot of protocol changes, but here we are in person: safe, and it feels so good.”