Letter from the City Manager
What a difference a couple of weeks make. Just as spring was upon us and we were planning to attend spring sporting events, work in our yards and attend end of the year school functions, the COVID-19 virus arrived in our great state and our community. Now, not only have numerous events been postponed, many public facilities had to be closed to public access and many large gatherings across the State and region are being put on hold. Governor Lee asked that all schools remain closed through April 24th and issued a stay at home executive order until April 14th. The COVID-19 virus is a very fluid issue that has developed. The realization of the need for prudent, preventative actions has become more and more apparent. Most importantly, everyone in the community can contribute to the community’s well-being by being diligent in practicing widely published actions like handwashing and social distancing to inhibit the spread of the virus.
“Social Distancing” is likely the single most effective action we can take to “Flatten the Curve” as it has been described widely in the media. The primary goal of flattening the curve is to reduce the peak number of infections. If the peak is allowed to develop unfettered in the U.S. and in our great city, it could overwhelm our healthcare system. This is what has happened in Italy. In the US, the hoarding that has led to empty shelves in stores, is not unlike what can happen to the limited capacity of our local healthcare system. We are used to having access to healthcare when we need it. As the spread of the COVID-19 virus in our community occurs, it will lead to healthcare not being able to respond to all of the need that develops. If we, as a community, take the prudent actions that are prescribed to reduce the rate of community spread of the virus, it will be a caring act for all residents of our city.
The public should know that there has been extensive inter-agency communication taking place over the last several weeks as response plans were developed to address this health challenge. Agencies include but are not limited to Local Emergency Management Agencies, Tennessee Emergency Management Agency, Tennessee Department of Health, Center for Disease Control and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. These agencies will continue to communicate as we all work through this time.
Residents desiring to stay completely informed of local information, including closings and cancellations may do so by visiting the City of Goodlettsville - COVID-19 webpage at www.goodlettsville.gov or by the social media platforms of facebook and twitter.
Over the coming days, there may be more closures of public events and facilities. This reduction in social activities will impact members of the community, in particular, our senior members, who rely on gatherings of their social groups for contact and support, and will find the lack of contact difficult. Please keep our seniors in mind and provide assistance when you can while keeping everyone within your radius safe.
The City of Goodlettsville’s collective goal is to make sure COVID-19 is only a great big inconvenience instead of COVID-19 becoming a tragedy, as is happening in Italy and China before our eyes.
Finally, if you think you or a loved one may have contracted the virus, please contact your healthcare provider by phone so that they can direct you on what actions to take. Secondly, if you have any questions and don’t know who to call locally, please call our local COVID Hotline at 615-851-2200, a trained staff member will be able to assist you with the information you may need. The Hotline is staffed Monday through Friday 8:00-4:30.
As Ben Franklin said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” This could not be truer than it is right now. Goodlettsville has overcome many challenges in the past. Together, with compassion, we will overcome this one.
Stay the course and stay calm, because we are Goodlettsville and we will overcome.
Tim Ellis, City Manager