JOINT PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
City of Astoria, Clatsop County, and Port of Astoria leadership provide March 16, 2020 update to Astoria’s upcoming cruise ship season and COVID-19
Joint Statement of Astoria Mayor Bruce Jones, Clatsop County Commission Chair Kathleen Sullivan, and Port of Astoria Executive Director Will Isom
Astoria, OR – March 16, 2020 – Joint Statement of the Port of Astoria, City of Astoria, and Clatsop County on protecting our community by slowing the rate of transmission of COVID-19.
7 days ago, we met to decide on a collective approach to reducing the risk to our community of transmission of the COVID-19 virus from cruise ships. At that time we agreed that passenger-carrying cruise vessels would be considered “public gatherings” for the purposes of the Governor of Oregon’s restrictions on public gatherings. This resulted in the cancellation of all cruise vessels carrying more than 250 persons as long as the Governor’s restrictions remain in place.
After careful study of the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation, new social distancing restrictions and recommendations from public health authorities, and threat of rapid transmission and resultant overwhelming of our health care system, the Port of Astoria, City of Astoria, and Clatsop County have collectively agreed to cancel ALL passenger-carrying cruise ship visits to Clatsop County through June 1.
This decision is not taken lightly. Cruise ship visits provide a substantial portion of the Port’s annual revenue, funding critically needed facility maintenance. Cruise ship passengers bring needed revenue to many small business in Clatsop County. However, at this critical time of national and local crisis, it is important to lean forward together in the interest of public health and safety.
This stance will be reevaluated on a regular basis throughout the public health emergency.
SIGNED: Astoria Mayor Bruce Jones, Clatsop County Commission Chair Kathleen Sullivan, Port of Astoria Executive Director Will Isom
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