Brookings City Council sticks with pandemic restrictions

BROOKINGS, S.D. (KJJQ) – The Brookings City Council voted to stick with the current pandemic restrictions for another 60-days. They had given first reading June 9 to a new ordinance that would have changed those restrictions to guidelines. That was amended June 30 to go back to the original emergency restrictions.

City Manager Paul Briseno talked about the guidelines.

Among those testifying in favor of keeping the restrictions in place, South Dakota State University President Barry Dunn. He says they have to send the message to students and their parents that Brookings is a safe place.

The vote to keep the restrictions in place was 5-2 with Leah Brink and new Council Member Joey Collins voting “no.” Collins says he looked at hospitalizations.

Council Member Nick Wendell says there is clear guidance from the CDC which says reopening should not happen until there has been declining case numbers for 14-days. He says Brookings is moving in the other direction.

Without any action, the rules would have expired on July 13. It was also noted they can be revisited at any time.