Three Lanett City Hall employees test positive for COVID-19

Published 3:06 pm Wednesday, April 8, 2020

LANETT — Three City of Lanett employees have tested positive for COVID-19, Lanett Mayor Kyle McCoy told The Valley Times-News Wednesday afternoon.

McCoy said the first of the employees to test positive had not been feeling ill but had a temperature when checked while entering city hall. When the reading was above 100 degrees, the employee was told to go home and call (334) 528-SICK. The employee was then directed to the testing site outside EAMC-Lanier Hospital in Valley, where a nasal swab was collected and sent to a medical lab. The test came back positive.

“That’s the scary part,” the mayor said. “The employee was asymptomatic. He felt fine but had it.”

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Two other employees were directed to call (334) 528-SICK after calling in and reporting that they didn’t feel well. They were tested outside EAMC-Lanier, and the lab report determined positive COVID-19 cases.

McCoy said that none of the three employees have been hospitalized, but they have been directed to be in isolation at home.

As a precaution, additional city employees were tested, but their lab tests came back negative.

At Monday’s virtual council meeting, the mayor announced that city hall would be closed on Friday for four days of intense cleaning. That’s been moved up to Thursday. Steve Arndt of Sparkling Clean Reflections will be sanitizing the building over a four-day period.

“He has the equipment and the sanitizers to do it,” McCoy said.

“The good health and wellbeing of our employees and our citizens is our highest priority,” McCoy said “We have been in contact with the East Alabama Medical Center regarding our positive tests and are following their directives in order to ensure the safety or our employees and our citizens.”

Due to the current coronavirus crisis, Lanett residents will be getting a break on utility payments. Cutoffs and late fees for the April 5 and April 20 billing cycles have been suspended. The city previously suspended the March 20 billing cycle. The normal billing structure will resume in May. It will be subject for further adjustment at that time, pending the severity of the ongoing crisis.

Lanett residents are encouraged to use the drop box near the drive-in window at city hall to make utility payments. They may also keep their payments current by going online to www.cityoflanett.com/pay.

Plans are to reopen city hall at 8:30 a.m. EDT on Tuesday, April 14, but the lobby will remain closed to the public.

As a precautionary move, McCoy said that the city will continue to monitor employee health every day. He urges anyone experiencing COVID-19 symptoms to call (334) 528-SICK.