Pima County imposes mandatory curfew
Will stay in effect until new case numbers drop significantly
TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Citing an escalation in coronavirus cases, Pima County has passed a resolution calling for a mandatory county wide curfew, including all incorporated communities.
The curfew begins on Dec. 15, 2020 at 10 p.m. and ends at 5 a.m. daily.
The county imposed a voluntary curfew on December 4, 2020 and in an effort to check on compliance, sent it’s inspectors to observe 400 businesses on Friday and Saturday nights. It discovered 15% of those businesses were not in compliance.
“Mostly bars or the bar restaurant combination,” said Pima County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry. “As you fail to contain the virus, you up the mitigation strategies.”
The vote was 3-2 in favor with the two Republicans on the board, District 4 Supervisor Steve Christy and District 1 Supervisor Ally Miller voting against it.
Miller likened the county’s inspections as “Gestapo tactics.”
District 2 Board Chair Ramone Valadez said the case spread in Pima County now is four times higher than it was during the peak in the past summer.
“If nothing else that tells us very, very clearly that what we’ve been able to do isn’t working,” he said. “In order to keep our community safe, we have to try other things.”
The city of Tucson passed a mandatory curfew earlier this month, but it doesn’t appear to be working well.
Huckelberry said the inspectors also surveilled hundreds of businesses inside the Tucson city limits.
But until the numbers are crunched, Huckelberry says he doesn’t know the city/county split but would later.
The names of the businesses were also not revealed.
But the curfew is a move the board members said they did not take lightly.
“This is not something we want but this is what we’ve been handed,” said District 5 Supervisor Betty Villegas. “We have to look at this from a perspective of life and death.”
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