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Huntsville mayor explains stay-at-home order during coronavirus outbreak

There is currently no curfew in Huntsville.

Posted: Apr 6, 2020 6:26 PM
Updated: Apr 7, 2020 8:35 AM

WAAY 31 took a closer look at Gov. Kay Ivey’s stay-at-home order and the more than 200 business exemptions.

On Monday, Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle said community resource officers have spent time working with big box stores to make sure they are following the order and to make sure groups aren’t playing team sports in local parks.

Battle said he expects the number of coronavirus cases to peak next week in Huntsville when most people should be home. City hall remains open. Battle said they are trying to get masks for all employees that come in contact with the public on a daily basis.

WAAY 31 asked Battle if he believes all of the businesses deemed essential by the governor, which include bookstores and dry cleaners, are actually essential.

"The first order before this one, the stay in place, covered most of your retailers and covered your retailers where people were going to gather in place, where you had gatherings. Could have gone to a total lockdown? Probably could have, but I think she went to the places where you'd have gatherings and you have social contact and you have touching," he said.

Last week, the mayor said a stay-at-home order would bring a curfew to the area, and would be the only difference to the health order restrictions in place at the time. On Monday, the mayor said there are many different types of curfews.

"Stay at home is a modified version of a curfew, and I think it very much needs to be put in place. I think it's something that makes us safer," he said.

The Huntsville City Council extended the local state of emergency in Huntsville, allowing Battle to make decisions quickly if needed. He has the power to put in place a city-wide curfew, but hasn't put one in place or alluded to any plans to do so.

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