Mayor: Tucson to delay reopening city buildings, Parks and Recreation services

Mayor: Tucson to delay reopening city buildings, Parks and Recreation services
(Source: Walton, Elizabeth)

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Mayor Regina Romero said she will delay reopening city buildings and Parks and Recreation services for at least two weeks, citing an uptick in COVID-19 cases.

Romero said the decision, which she, City Manager Michael Ortega and City Attorney Mike Rankin came to Friday, June 5, followed talks with leaders of the Pima County Health Department. The move would push back the city’s phase one reopening day from Monday, June 8 to Monday, June 22.

“We saw some very disturbing figures for June 1, 2 and 3,” Romero said. “COVID-19 cases spiked up incredibly aggressive in those days.”

On June 1, Pima County reported 14 new cases, by June 2, cases jumped to 114, according to data from county health officials recorded by KOLD News 13 staff. Pima County confirmed 131 new cases on June 3, 42 on June 4 and 214 on June 5.

In the past few days, Arizona has had a record number of COVID-19 cases confirmed overnight: On Friday, June 5, the state health department confirmed upward of 1,500 cases statewide. As of Saturday, June 6, Arizona has 25,451 confirmed cases, with 2,950 of those in Pima County, according to the Arizona Department of Health Services.

“It only impacts City of Tucson buildings and Parks and Recreation services. That is what we have at our disposal in terms of making decisions with any types of reopening plans,” Romero said.

Romero said she will continue to monitor the data leaders from the county health department release and revisit reopening at a later date.

“It’s better to be safe than to put our employees or the public in danger,” she said.

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