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Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman implores governor to shorten business shutdown

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Posted at 2:47 PM, Mar 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-19 01:03:10-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Just one day after Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak announced a shutdown of all casinos and nonessential businesses, the mayor of Las Vegas fired back.

"I know we, and they, cannot survive any total shut down of the economy for any length of time beyond the immediate week or two," Mayor Carolyn Goodman said Wednesday during a city council meeting. "So many, working in the hospitality industry (more than likely in big hotels) … and also those mom & pop small, privately-owned businesses -- these are most definitely at the greatest risk

"They cannot survive any lengthy shutdown."

RELATED: What are essential, nonessential services in Nevada?

Mayor Goodman has been critical in the past of the media's coronavirus coverage, saying it was "absolutely destroying us."

On Tuesday night, Gov. Sisolak ordered all casinos to close, gaming machines to shut, and asked Nevadans to stay at home as much as possible over the next 30 days in order to contain the coronavirus outbreak in the state. To date, there are 42 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 1 death in Clark County.

RELATED: STAY HOME FOR NEVADA: Gov. Steve Sisolak announces closures of nonessential businesses

Below are the full comments by Mayor Goodman as provided by her office:

In this time of unprecedented challenge and uncertainty, each of us is being called upon to follow the national mandates of the president of the united states and those of our governor of Nevada, Steve Sisolak. Clear, open communication and variable instructions-to-follow, call for all of us to work together, to remain calm, and realize there is and will continue to be, over-riding plans to follow. ..Patience, civility, self-control, and having strong faith must prevail, for fear and fear alone can and will impede us.

It has been my intent as mayor of this great city of Las Vegas that we would be able to remain open for business … even when realizing that there could have been constraints put upon us to which we would have reasonably adhered. Because not only do I understand, but also because I am painfully aware and sensitive to the very many who live paycheck to paycheck, I know we/they cannot survive any total shut down of the economy for any length of time beyond the immediate week or two.

So many, working in the hospitality industry (more than likely in big hotels) … and also those mom & pop small, privately-owned businesses ---these are most definitely at the greatest risk…they cannot survive any lengthy shutdown…thus my full out efforts will be focused on keeping as many of our people as possible, employed and asking the governor to shorten the projected shutdown.

Know the facts: in the past 20 years alone and without any shutdown: we have survived the West Nile virus in 2002; SARS in 2004; the bird flu in 2005, 2006 ecoli; 2009 swine flu; 2014 ebola; 2016 zika virus, and annually “the general flu” and we’re still here!!!-

Any full-out shutdown will cripple this state’s recovery not only now but for several years to come… we are unique; we are not new york, l.A., san francisco…our economy depends on tourism and being open for dining, entertainment, gaming, sports …42 million people come to us every year as tourists… and our own 3 million nevadans depend on the income from that tourism for their livelihoods. . . Shutting down for any lengthy time will create untenable hardship!

Now, according to the cdc, this corona virus, covid-19, like other viruses before it tends to have an incubatiion period ranging from 2 to 14 days. It, like other viruses, oftentimes targets those with compromised health issues, and of course too often, the elderly.

Covid-19 is most contagious beginning a day before symptoms show up and remains transmissible until about 8 days thereafter. Thus the call for self-isolation before and during the onset and until the contagious period is concluded, is beyond prudent, and we can do this.

The Governor has mandated and encouraged self-isolation when appropriate… distance separation (one from another) at all times…and before last night’s mandate…cutting business occupancy to 50% to help control the spread of the virus. Of course we have and should always follow all standards and practices of sustainable good health.

We are adhering to those demands and do so in trust and in good faith ….But we will always be cognizant that the government of this country and in all states --- is of the people, by the people, and for the people…

So as we are permitted, the city of Las Vegas will seek ways for people and businesses to control their own lives, make their own choices, create and follow their own destinies….And live being assured they have the right to do so in dignity, earning a livelihood, providing for their families and even helping others to enjoy those same rights and dignities as they can ---and even as we struggle to survive even this virus.

Please governor, we need to be able to live our lives, support our families… and yes, keep Nevada strong together…but we can’t do that if we are house-bound unable to work for such a lengthy time. Please be assured that the city of Las Vegas and our staff will continue to do our expected duties with vigor and determination for the people of Las Vegas and Nevada.