NEW PORT RICHEY — City Council will hold its next regular meeting April 7 but it will not be open to the public in order to as to comply with public health regulations during the coronavirus pandemic.
Residents can still view the meeting remotely, as always, either online or on television. The website to view New Port Richey meetings is newportricheyfl.swagit.com/live.
Residents wishing to speak under the Vox Pop portion of the meeting or on a particular agenda item must submit comments to City Clerk Judy Meyers, at email@example.com, no later than Monday, April 6. All comments received will be read aloud by Meyers during the meeting.
The city has suspended work sessions, board and committee meetings until further notice and is updating its website, www.cityofnewportrichey.org, with new procedures, closures and cancelations.
As of March 25, public access to City Hall was limited to Billing and Collections to establish new water service, the Development Department to drop off development plans or pick up permits, and Economic Development to drop of grant paperwork through the drive-up window. All water payments must be made at the drive-up window or through the payment drop box.
As of March 25, the New Port Richey Public Library was slated to remain closed through April 1. Online materials may be accessed at www.nprlibrary.org.
The New Port Richey Recreation and Aquatic Center has closed its indoor areas and pools until April 19. Outdoor areas, including the tennis courts, skate park and basketball courts, remain open to the public.
All city playgrounds, park bathrooms, picnic pavilions and the splash pad are closed until further notice. All other areas in the city parks are open to the public.
Reservations for Peace Hall and picnic shelters are suspended until April 30. Call 727-841-4560 for more information.
City Council’s last public meeting was held March 18.
“As we as a city respond to the ongoing COVID-19, this might be an appropriate time by me to try and inspire a degree of confidence in the community that we are responding,” City Manager Debbie Manns said during the March 18 meeting. “We are certainly not the unit of government that’s being shown on the news, but our plans are real and our efforts have been to continue to carry out the essential services and functions of the city and to do so while protecting the public and our employees from the coronavirus.”
“It’s going to be a rough few weeks or couple of months depending on how this shakes out,” said Mayor Rob Marlowe. “We just all need to work together and muddle through.
“We have some fairly large companies that are going to be hurting, but the businesses on Main Streets around the country; they don’t have those multi-billion-dollar reserves, so I am concerned for them”
Marlowe also encouraged residents to find time to fulfill their civic duty of completing and submitting the 2020 Census.
“It is important. The tax money that the city gets, the county gets, the state gets is all tied to the census. So we need to have everybody fill the things out. And it also affects our representation in Washington, so please everybody do that.”
“Be safe. Don’t go out if you don’t need to. Let’s all try to get through this together.”