Riverton mayor says he will not enforce order limiting public gatherings to 10 people or fewer

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A rendering of coronavirus via the CDC.

RIVERTON, Utah (ABC4 News) – In a statement issued on Friday, Riverton Mayor Trent Staggs expressed his commitment to the health and safety of Riverton residents without enforcing Salt Lake County’s order to limit public gatherings to 10 people or fewer.

Utah Governor Gary Herbert has since repealed Salt Lake County’s Public Health Order.

Mayor Staggs stated the following:

As mayor, my priority is always the health and safety of Riverton residents. It is critical that we preserve our institutions and constitution especially when times are uncertain. During this time of a declared state of emergency, I strongly encourage Riverton residents to act responsibly and make safe choices to protect themselves and their families. And, I have faith that they will do so.

Last night, I learned that Salt Lake County, through the County Mayor’s Office, issued an order limiting all gatherings in the county to 10 people or less. Violating this order can be punished as a class B misdemeanor – equating to 6 months in jail or a $1,000 fine. It appears the Governor has now weighed in on this, seeing how problematic such an order would be, and is urging repeal of the order.

I am asking Riverton’s chief of police to direct his officers to protect public peace and continue to act with public safety in mind. At this time, I have asked that officers do not enforce Salt Lake County’s order and will ask that none of these individuals be prosecuted. Committing valuable police resources to enforcing such an order, to me, would not at all be beneficial, nor prioritizing the health and safety of our residents. It seems disingenuous to me that the county would have created this order at a time when courts are shutting down and only prosecuting the most serious of crimes.

I have faith that the people of Riverton and the entrepreneurs who have located in Riverton will make appropriate precautionary measures including ceasing operations if it is the correct decision for them.

Mayor Staggs ended the letter by telling Riverton residents that the city continues to function despite challenges posed by the virus and that hygienic practices are being followed to prevent the virus’s spread. He stated that residents and businesses should visit Riverton’s website for more information and to access critical resources if needed.

Watch Mayor Stagg’s full statement here or on Riverton’s website:

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