On March 13, 2020 The Board of Commissioners signed Resolution 25-2020 “In the Matter of Declaring a Local State of Emergency Due to COVID-19 (Coronavirus) to make certain we are able to swiftly deploy the personnel and resources necessary to address, the possible occurrence of coronavirus in Columbia County. 

This state of emergency gives Columbia County Oregon Health Authority and Office of Emergency Management all resources at the state’s disposal to limit the spread of the coronavirus.

The state of emergency will remain in effect until August 13, 2020

Columbia County has declared a state of emergency under ORS 401.309 that authorizes the Board of County Commissioners for Columbia County to declare that a state of emergency exists in Columbia County and to establish procedures to prepare for and carry out any activity to prevent, minimize, respond to or recover from an emergency.  This emergency declaration does not indicate that the public is at any greater risk.  The declaration is meant to give our county public health staff the flexibility and support it needs to quickly purchase supplies, organize our response over the weeks ahead and seek potential state and federal resources as they become available.

The Board has determined that a state of emergency exists in Columbia County due to the following conditions; COVID-19 is a highly contagious and novel Coronavirus for which there is no vaccine, and the public is at risk for contracting the disease. We want to ensure the safety and protection of our most vulnerable population. 

Columbia County Board of Commissioners may take all necessary steps authorized by law to coordinate response and recovery from this emergency, including but not limited to, requesting assistance and potential reimbursements from the State of Oregon and the appropriate federal agencies.

Everyone can help reduce the spread of infectious diseases such as the flu and COVID-19 by doing the following:

  • Washing hands often for 20-30 seconds with warm water and soap.
  • Coughing or sneezing into your sleeve or a tissue, not into your bare hands.
  • Staying home if sick.
  • Keeping your immune system strong by eating a healthy diet, getting enough sleep and regular exercise and by taking care of underlying health conditions.

There are also basic steps households should take to prepare for any unexpected event, such as:

  • Establishing a child care plan in the event your kids need to stay home from school.
  • Making sure your household has the necessary food, drinks, medications and pet supplies if members of your household need to stay home
  • Limit your contact with other people for a couple of weeks.
  • Reach out to your neighbors, especially those who might need extra help, such as older adults or people livening alone, to ensure they have access to medicines and other supplies.

For updated Coronavirus information please call 211 or visit the Oregon Health Authority’s web page.

For more information on Columbia County’s Declaration please visit

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