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LIVE OAK — In an emergency called meeting Thursday afternoon, the Live Oak City Council unanimously declared a local state of emergency.

City Attorney Fred Koberlein advised that his opinion is the council will not have to meet every seven days to renew the state of emergency because the entire State of Florida is under a state of emergency. Koberlein said by making the date of the local resolution retroactive to matching Gov. Ron DeSantis’ executive order which stated for 60 days, the council should only have to meet to rescind the local state of emergency prior to that time.

“We did not feel comfortable making the community or the local government to come back every seven days,” Koberlein said.

Councilman Don Allen asked if there were any supplies or services that the city is anticipating a need to order. Finance Director Joanne Luther said the city is looking to obtain a disinfectant sprayer for the Live Oak Police Department and Live Oak Fire Department to be able to use. Luther also said the city is looking into getting some of the protective suits to have on hand. Sharon Hingson with the Suwannee County Sheriff’s Office - Emergency Management Division said she is working with all the local agencies to place those requests with the state.

In the short meeting, the council also unanimously approved to cancel its April meeting.

“Under the circumstances, I would say that we should,” District 3 Councilman David Burch said in making the motion.

City Clerk John Gill said City Manager Ron Williams and Live Oak Community Redevelopment Agency Director Gabrielle Redfern would make the decision on whether or not to hold the CRA meeting in April. The CRA’s March meeting has already been canceled, Gill said.

Jamie Wachter is the editor of the Suwannee Democrat, Jasper News and Mayo Free Press.

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