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Sevier County leaders urging non-essential businesses, services to close amid COVID-19 outbreak

While Sevier County does not have the authority to order businesses to close, leaders are urging them to follow the state's Executive Order 17.

SEVIER COUNTY, Tenn. — The mayors and city managers of Sevier County, Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, Pittman Center, and Sevierville are strongly urging non-essential businesses and services in Sevier County to temporarily close to the public due to the COVID-19 outbreak, according to a release on Sunday. 

This request coincides with Governor Lee’s Executive Order 17, which called for businesses to use alternative business models. The order is in effect until April 6.

RELATED: Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee signs Executive Order 17: suspends in-person dining, closes gyms, takes other measures to slow coronavirus spread

ESSENTIAL businesses and services, as defined by the state, include:

  • Grocery and beverage stores, farmers markets, food banks, catering, convenience stores selling food, agriculture, food processing, feed mills and other businesses that directly support the food supply
  • Health care, mental and behavioral health, and biomedical research and businesses that directly support the healthcare industry including health information technology, staffing and supplies
  • Sanitation and waste removal businesses and services
  • Energy, water, and sewage businesses and services
  • Pharmacies and medical supply businesses, and other businesses that directly support the drug and medical supply pipeline
  • Vehicle fuel, support, service stations and businesses
  • Banks, savings and loans, insurance companies, accounting businesses and other business that directly support the insurance and financial services sector
  • Legal and judicial services
  • Laundromats/laundry/cleaning services
  • Home and business repair, hardware supply
  • Warehousing and storage
  • Construction and facilities design businesses
  • Product logistics, transport, and distribution businesses
  • Parcel transportation and delivery businesses
  • Veterinary and pet supply business and services including agricultural services and the caring and feeding of all livestock and farm animals
  • Home and business cleaning and maintenance services
  • All businesses which rely upon deliveries may continue, including florists, Internet and telecommunications systems (including the provision of essential global, national, and local infrastructure for computing services, business infrastructure, communications, and web-based services)
  • Essential city, county, state and federal government functions including law enforcement, transportation, post offices, airports and businesses that provide government programs and services
  • Certain other businesses and services that the Office of the Mayor determines are essential for the continued safety and security for the citizens of Sevier County.

Metro governments, such as Knoxville, Nashville and Memphis, operate under different laws and charters and have the authority to order the closure of certain businesses. 

RELATED: Sevier Co. leaders asking state to close bars, limit dining occupancy after residents concerned coronavirus guidelines are being ignored

Sevier County and the cities do not have the same authority, but leaders wanted to strongly urge citizens and businesses to follow this request.

RELATED: Gatlinburg couple in self-quarantine to prevent spread of COVID-19

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